Monday, April 18, 2016

Slowing Down The Past

After having just watched a lot of jerky, speeded-up World War I footage, the thought occurred to me: Why not digitize the frames and create interpolated frames between the real frames?  Then slow everything down and presto -- natural motion.

I assumed that early film technology moved too slowly -- that early film cameras couldn't blink fast enough to keep up with reality. Boy, was I wrong.  

Old movies look jerky because there is a fundamental mismatch between older projection speeds and modern projection speeds and television. People in theaters back then actually saw movies that looked natural and not jerky.

Why is this so hard to fix?


rhhardin said...

Projectors have, or used to have, a sound and silent speed. The conventions were different.

Both look fine in their respective speeds, but it's bad to play silent at the sound speed.

AllenS said...

I don't expect perfection from old stuff.

ricpic said...

Wow, that's fascinating. I assumed - I'll bet most others do as well - that the speeded up jerky motion in early films had to do with primitive mechanics.

rhhardin said...

The switch in the middle of Bell and Howell 16mm projector says silent and sound.

chickelit said...

Thanks rhhardin. You are always a trove of forgotten facts & wisdom.