November 26, 2012

Canon C500 4K Short Film 'ALEX' Puts the Camera Through Its Paces

Aside from the short film Man & Beast shot by Jeff Cronenweth, ASC, there hasn't been much footage showing off what the already shipping Canon C500 is capable of. Since it has the same sensor and identical internal recording, footage shot right on the cards within the camera should be similar, if not identical to that of the Canon C300. What most people (including me) really want to see, however, is more footage that has been recorded externally using the superior RAW output of the C500. That's exactly what DP Nino Leitner has done with a new short film, ALEX. Click through to check it out.

Thanks to cinema5D for the link to Nino's post and film:

Here are a few tidbits he gave from his blog post about the camera. It was shot mostly at 850 ISO (with the exception of a couple shots) and then converted from RAW to DPX using Blackmagic DaVinci Resolve and color graded using Nucoda:

The Automatic mode of the C500 fan does not seem to care whether the camera is currently recording or not. It simply spins up when the camera gets too hot, and that seems to happen easily and quickly even at room temperature. We had several takes in which the fan started spinning half way through the take, making it hard for our sound recordist, so we had to reshoot takes because of that...

The C500 features a “Lens Exchange” button, which, when pressed, puts the camera in a kind of standby mode which makes it safe to swap lenses. After you put on the new lens, you press the button again and it’s back up immediately. You still have to think about pressing that damn button before you take off the lens, but at least it makes the whole process a little faster (although the C300 & C500 are extremely fast to boot up anyway)...

For the grade we went to Matthias Tomasi, a professional colorist working at a big post production house in Vienna, and he graded the film using the Nucoda suite. For the first time, we saw the 4K material in its full glory on proper monitors and we were astonished. Even without any grading, and still looked at in 1080p, the image was clearly superior over the internal MXF files from the camera.

Nino and the team shot on the Gemini 4K recorder to uncompressed RAW. At the time of shooting this was the least expensive and most readily available recorder capable of handling the massive RAW files coming from the Canon C500. This is going to change relatively soon with the release of the AJA Ki Pro Quad, but for now, there aren't too many options to shoot 4K on a budget with this camera (though at 1TB per hour of RAW footage, it's going to be difficult to shoot on a budget in 4K with this camera anyway). They also were able to use the new Canon Cinema primes, and they did a little bit of a comparison to Zeiss lenses which they also had on the shoot (a simple Zeiss/Canon comparison of one focal length will be online soon.)

In a welcome change to most camera tests, I was actually watching for the story -- instead of for the look of the camera -- after a couple minutes. This is the way ideally all camera tests would be done (at least in part), but normally money and circumstance don't allow for anything extensive like this. I think the look of these cameras is becoming less and less important the more information we have to work with. So many films are shot with post in mind now that much of the look is made up in color grading, so the actual camera itself is less important -- especially if you're getting a RAW file. Of course, there are certainly differences between each camera system, but those differences are far less drastic than the comparisons of 8-bit 4:2:0 footage from DSLRs.

I may not think the price is very competitive in terms of the competition, but there is no question this camera can deliver a great image. Regardless of where Canon prices anything though, they tend to fly off shelves and are consistently out of stock at rental houses, so I don't really expect the C500 to be much different. What is interesting to me is that there are a lot of quirks and issues that RED was also dealing with when they first introduced the EPIC. It's clear that if you're shooting in 4K, you need serious cooling, and no small camera is going to escape this. The workflow is also foreign to most people, as opposed to the very mature RED codec which is now native to the major editing platforms. There are definitely advantages and disadvantages to compressed and uncompressed RAW, but I think 1 Terabyte per hour is going to keep a lot of people from using the 4K mode on every project -- just specific ones.

While they weren't able to get the 120fps mode working, this is either firmware related or it has to do with the way the files themselves are recorded. I don't think this will be a big deal, but it's just another issue that most new cameras deal with as the firmware matures and the third party support gets better around the camera.

Nino has written an extensive post about using the C500, and it's really a must-read for anyone who is interested in learning more about shooting with the camera or working with the footage. In addition to some RAW still frames that he has posted, he will also be uploading a 4K file and posting the film to YouTube in 4K.

What do you guys think about the footage? What about the workflow involved to actually get working with these files? How about the file sizes, would 1TB an hour be a deal-breaker on most projects, or are you already dealing with this kind of data on a daily basis?

Link: Canon EOS C500 – Review & short film “ALEX” -- Nino Film Blog

[via cinema5D]

Your Comment

86 Comments

Ahh The Irony of Naming a film shot raw on a Canon... ALEX (A).

November 26, 2012

1
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Tulio

Totally not impressed by this short, it hasn't got a cinematic feel. Feels video-ish...
May be the DOP's fault or the camera, but not impressed by this short...

November 26, 2012

1
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Ardon

Same here. Felt like the music made it very cheap sounding, lacked suspense etc...
reminds me of the millions of comments talking about how HOW you shoot is more important than WHAT you shoot with. Then again, here we are...

November 26, 2012

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Paris

Really video ish looking. The bar scene looks like TV soft porn, with all due respect to soft porn..
Maybe is a DP fault, the original demo video for the C500 looks 10000 times better than this.

November 26, 2012

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Martin

Agreed. Not impressed at all. Music and DPing certainly play a roll too though.

November 27, 2012

1
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michael

We made a mistake in the grade - we were trying to go for to different looks, interwoven in each other, because of the two different storylines. Only problem: it doesn't work and nobody gets it.

We will do a re-grade. And also give you guys some of the raw footage to play with.

Please read my detailed comment on this:
http://nofilmschool.com/2012/11/canon-c500-4k-short-film-alex/comment-pa...

November 27, 2012

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Except for the color grading I like it. But for the time you did it in I thought it was a good effort. I want to see the regrade for sure. And I did think it had a good feel to it. I wouldn't listen to the haters most of them haven't done any better I'm sure.

November 29, 2012

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Gary Simmons

The motion in some of those wides just scream 'video', particularly when they first enter the apartment.

Some nice stuff though.

November 26, 2012

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Ant

Plus the director breaks the line at litterally the first possible moment. :)

As a short film this is pretty much nothing, but it's okay for a camera test.

The French aren't doing too much to help canon's C line. Remember that C100 launch video with girls in bikinis and people waving 'C' flags? :)

November 26, 2012

1
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Ant

lol

November 26, 2012

-1
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VINCEGORTHO

Not a single French person involved in the making of this film.

Other than that, please read my detailed comments on some of the criticisms: http://nofilmschool.com/2012/11/canon-c500-4k-short-film-alex/comment-pa...

November 27, 2012

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ahhh the atypical film school students....if u r referring to the beginning, the line was crossed but no rule was broken , people cross lines all the time in movies to symbolize change...BTW those so called rules r not stickers!!

November 27, 2012

1
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thadon calico

Yep so true. The line is really broken all the time. You just have to make sure you don't disorient the viewer. An actor who leaves the frame on the right can't come back from the other direction when cutting. Really obvious stuff if you watch it obviously. But you have to plan for it when shooting so it works in the edit.

November 27, 2012

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I used to be a fan of canon's color science... but the pastel-pallet has worn on me quickly. I much prefer the more vivid/clear color of Red/BMC/GH2 and such. Everything is pink/blue with canon, I don't get it.

November 26, 2012

1
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bwhitz

Looks like this camera has the same problem with motion as the C300. Not impressed but then again if someone who didn't know what they were doing shot 35mm you would end up with crappy looking footage. I don't like the skin tones or the sterile, clean look of this short. The short Cronenweth shot looked very nice and showed off the capability of the camera but considering how expensive the raw output is going to be from a storage and acquisition standpoint, not sure who this is aimed at (too much for TV, too expensive for indie, not as good as Alexa or F65 for major players).

November 26, 2012

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the colour looks really weird, skintone doesn't feel pleasing at all..

Also clipped ugly highlights are everywhere.

what's going on?! (I like the narrative by the way)

November 26, 2012

1
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Marvin

The two different looks in the grade that we went for were intentional because of the two different storylines taking place at the same time (but in the same places). But it doesn’t work and it’s our fault.

A re-grade will be done as soon as possible.

We will replace the video next week.

Read my detailed comment here:
http://nofilmschool.com/2012/11/canon-c500-4k-short-film-alex/comment-pa...

November 27, 2012

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I think its the coloring that makes this feel kind of "video-ee". Seemed too globally warm on some scenes. color didn't really match the mood.

November 26, 2012

1
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It looks like a soap opera lol

November 26, 2012

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john jeffreys

Stopped at the bar scene, can't finish it. Bad direction and lights, no pacing, terrible music, random stuff in the bar just to showing off the 4K and badly. Looks like an attempt to replicate the Soderbergh' Ocean films. Why shooting this test/short film with no ideas? IMO are just a waste of time and bad advertising. A good movie should get me for the story, the atmosphere... everything should go in the right direction.

November 26, 2012

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Okay, time to be a critic.

Lighting is pretty bad in terms of basic lighting technique, and the color temperature is all over the place.

Seems like they didn't bother to do any basic cinematography techniques, like gel lights/match color temperatures of the light sources, etc. The first shot with the steadicam in the hallway, the color temp is a yellow/neon green! :(

They shot too telephoto, more TV/soap opera style, not cinema style. I didn't see any decent compositions, in terms of the framing and the way it was shot.

The story didn't mean anything, no point.

Okay, done being a critic. :)

November 26, 2012

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Robert

Yep.

November 27, 2012

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Ron

The two different looks in the grade that we went for were intentional because of the two different storylines taking place at the same time (but in the same places). But it doesn't work and it's our fault. A re-grade will be done as soon as possible. We will post the video again next week.

Read my detailed comment here:
http://nofilmschool.com/2012/11/canon-c500-4k-short-film-alex/comment-pa...

November 27, 2012

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Yes that wasn't exactly memorable in any capacity but I don't think you can blame the camera for any of it. A good audio post tech (sadly rare still) will be able to whack the varying fan noise OK though yes it's a bit more work.

My C100 is being shipped out right now and it looks to be the absolute least painful camera to use both in capture and post I can think of. It uses this same sensor and with a Ninja 2 I get direct to ProRes 422 HQ. 12stops over 8bits isn't terrible, and the new Wide DR gamma looks just about ideal for accelerating post workflow without harming highlight rolloff.

All I needed to add was two 64GB cards (5 hours of internal recording with redundant safety) and two knockoff batteries, total under $150 and I'm ready to shoot with my existing DSLR rigging. (I also have the Zacuto EVF and Ninja 2 already.) I'm getting the Gefen locking HDMI cables too for security, which may even be overall more reliable than SDI for short runs. All I'm really missing is slomo and 4K/RAW...plus a lot of you may not like the Canon C look. Fine, but the C100 anyway is not overpriced TCO and its awesome low light performance saves budget on lighting. And again, it looks to be a camera far easier to swear by than swear at, and should carry me through the remainder of the 1080p era. I will update.

November 26, 2012

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Peter

Depends on what you want to achieve with the C100.
It wont look like film. The C300 doesn't even do that. Best choice at low cost is the BMC.

November 26, 2012

1
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VINCEGORTHO

?... People are still interested in the Black Magic camera? Wasn't that a summer fad? Did they ever manage to ship anything? ;-)

It would be cruel to the Aussie company to compare pain-in-the-arse factor between the BMCC and the C100.

Film didn't have moire, false color, a green cast, etc. either. I predict the C100 at double the body price but about equal the ready-to-shoot price crushes the BMCC completely. I think Canon will make a lot more money off the C100 than BMD will off its first attempt at a camera, for good reason. I am hopeful for BMD, they may have a truly competitive product by early 2014 or so. And they have already put a bit of scare in the Japan companies (C100 should be $8K but is $6.5K). I don't hate them, I'm rooting for them, but they don't have a real product yet. We'll see if they are still relevant in the camera biz a year from now.

November 27, 2012

1
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Peter

Not sure why you would even compare these two cameras - they're for completely different purposes.

November 27, 2012

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Clayton Arnall

So 4K can't make up for bad filmmaking - bummer I was hoping it would...

November 26, 2012

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Lance Bachelder

In this case 4K may have over-resolved it into looking videoish rather than filmic...the poor makeup etc was too visible. Just like clean 60p looks more video and grainy 24p more filmic, it's what you leave out that matters more.

Then again, there is always blur/grain in post to taste, yet you can't recapture resolution and detail. What people are complaining about here is a lack of taste and skill...the camera arguably overperformed and shouldn't be punished for doing so.

November 26, 2012

1
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Peter

Yeah I agree. I saw too much.

November 26, 2012

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I was more interested in the story and the acting of the talents rather than the 4K camera. Is it not true that the content is more important than the container?

November 26, 2012

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Tas Khan

The content could be narratively brilliant, but if it's poorly executed you've lost your audience. Personally I would take an average story told brilliantly over an amazing story told poorly.

November 26, 2012

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Nick

I can't believe that French have made such a crap to promote the C500. Unbelievable.

Awful grading, Terrible acting (and I know what I'm talking about, I'm French), and the Music !!! GOD, have they figured out the first scene was actually changing to a dinner?? It feels completely wrong that soundtrack with the Spy kind of music...

Anyway I haven't even finished the short, I'm not sure if I will it is so So so disappointing.

November 26, 2012

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Isn't that C100 made by French guys as well? That was also horrible.

November 26, 2012

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why do canon insist on giving these cameras to French people to test :)

November 27, 2012

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Peter Kelly

Please do your homework before commenting, or read the blog post ... not a single French person was involved in the making of this film.

November 27, 2012

0
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Well, and what do you think of the acting, exactly ?

November 26, 2012

0
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My question is for Tas Khan...

November 26, 2012

1
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We're gonna be due for a nice, 4K raw shootout come March next year, once we've got a full fleet of the BMCC, Ikonoskop, Scarlet/Epic, C500, F5/55/65, Alexa to all compare. I'd love to see an even playing field to compare DR, highlight roll off, colour matrix, and then, most of all, the limits to which those images can be pushed in post.

In the meantime, I'm happy for more and more demos like this keep popping up.

November 26, 2012

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Ben Howling

Very inconsistent look overall

November 26, 2012

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carlos

The two different timelines have a different look. But nobody gets it, and that's our fault. We are doing a re-grade. Please read my detailed comment: http://nofilmschool.com/2012/11/canon-c500-4k-short-film-alex/comment-pa...

November 27, 2012

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Joe i think you said it better here

So many films are shot with post in mind now that much of the look is made up in color grading, so the actual camera itself is less important — especially if you’re getting a RAW file.

People is going crazy with new cameras and what they need to focus is on creativity, because bits or 4ks wont give you that "extra" talent.

November 26, 2012

1
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Pablo

Hey Pablo, you are right, we are doing a re-grade of the film. This can look way better.

Please read my detailed comment on this: http://nofilmschool.com/2012/11/canon-c500-4k-short-film-alex/comment-pa...

November 27, 2012

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Looks like video to me. I think it looks like really nice DSLR footage. At the price that the C500 is at there is no way it can compete. Maybe it will find its market in television.

November 26, 2012

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I have no idea where this camera can exist. For about the same money one can get a Red Epic. I still wonder if anyone already told Canon.

November 27, 2012

2
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michael

I'm not particularly fond of the video. But you guys do know that the original blog post has a zip file with some of the DPX stills, right? http://nino.macbay.de/ALEX_C500/DPX_stills_ALEX.zip

Maybe people can grade those files instead of getting so negative on a person who put his own free time into sharing his experience with a new camera. Just a thought.

November 26, 2012

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Ken

Thanks Ken. One reasonable person in a forum of trolls, much appreciated!

November 27, 2012

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I don't think that is a nice thing to say just because people didn't like something that you did. You don't come off very well caling names.

You can obviously defend what you did or why you did it -which is futile since it is such a subjective thing that we are talking about - but insulting everyone who reads a blog is a lame attempt to make yourself feel better.

In my opinion you can do whatever you want, you can light it any way you want and you can obviously put it on the internet for people to see.But you can't expect or force people to like your work.

Despite how bad some comments make you feel you can learn from them or just ignore them.

I once had the cruel experience of showing a work in progress in a full theater and it didn't go very well.It was something i was not used to (still not-never will) but made me think so much clearer than any encouraging words ever will.

Sorry for this.

November 27, 2012

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konstantinos

Sorry konstantinos, you are right, and I have to apologize. I overreacted and most of the criticisms here about the film here are far from I understand as "trolling".

To be honest I was pissed off at some particular comments which I received, most of them not even here on this site, which were totally personally insulting and had nothing to do with the film at hand. If people don't like something, they can say it, and everyone is entitled to their opinion. But getting personal and essentially libelous is way out of line.

I am truly not fishing for compliments, everyone who knows me knows that, all I ask for is constructive criticism. And that's missing here in many comments, and just look how many of the readers here hide behind anonymous short names. I want people to tell things to my face without hiding in the dark.

It would just be nice if people actually realized that we did this for the community alone, nobody involved gains anything from this financially. It was fun to do, we wanted to get this opportunity to shoot with the camera, and off we went with it, half-prepared as you often are for no-budget shoots.

Having reviewed a lot of the constructive criticisms, we have decided to take the following steps:

1.
We will re-grade the entire short as soon as possible (early next week).

What people didn't understand (and that was my worry from the beginning) is that the story deals with two interwoven storylines, which are not taking place at the same time. The viewer is led to the assumption that Eric entering the hotel happens at the same time as Maxime sitting on the bed. That is not the case and it's resolved when we see Alex kill Eric; it happened before she met Maxime and went back to the hotel with him.
The difference in grading needs either to be stronger (for instance, have the past events in black and white) or not there at all. I think we will go with the latter version, because that's what we lit for.

Not to sound apologetic to what we did, but the grade had to take place within 3 hours or so in the middle of the night, and it definitely needs a lot more work. We fell short on that and we make it right.

2.
We will try to put up an ungraded "raw" version of the short for people to have a play with. It won't be 4K DPX sequences as this is way too big for the Internet. But we are trying to find a way to put at least a ProRes version of the ungraded short online for people to fiddle around - at least a series of scenes.

3.
The sound mix will be re-done. This was planned anyway, our sound guys and the composer just didn't have the time to do the fine-tuning yet. We went out with the short to be the first ones to put something out that was shot with the C500, and some parts of it were definitely not ready yet.

4.
Tiny bits will be re-edited.
The "bar details" shots (quick focus pulls through glasses etc.) will be taken out. They were too short to be appreciated anyway, everything is out of focus, and we were never really happy with the shots at that position in the film. They were supposed to indicate the passing of time, but it doesn't work.
The fight scene lacks coverage from some perspectives because we literally had 40 minutes to shoot all of this before one actor had to leave. This will be covered by cropping into some of the 4K takes. We don't know if it will work, but the editor will give it a try. We'll see.

Looking forward to hearing what you guys think of our ideas.

November 27, 2012

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". It won’t be 4K DPX sequences as this is way too big for the Internet. But we are trying to find a way to put at least a ProRes version of the ungraded short"

i'll love that! i'm migrating to Piranha 7 @my linux box, and that will be a hell of fun to try some grading with this! =D

November 27, 2012

1
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guto novo

In my opinion you don't have to defend the short film.It is what it is and the writer - director is much more responsible for it. I will however make a few observations.

1) What has happened here is that Canon has pissed off a lot of people with its marketing and pricing tactics and you are getting a lot of negativity for it.

2) The execution was mediocre.Some of the compositions were ok but overall i think the coverage was very
unimaginative and the movement of the camera was lacking motivation at times.I think the script didn't help at all.

3) I did read your blog post and i wonder why you shot wide open.Didn't you have enough lights? I think the shallow depth of field was not a very smart decision if you wanted to showcase the resolution of the camera.It gives a very distinct look that is unfortunately overused.

4) I didn't like the lighting very much for various reasons but that is such a subjective matter.However, i do think you belong in a generation of shooters that know so much more about cameras than they do about lighting and it shows.

5) Being the second person that shoots with a camera after Jeff Cronenweth isn't an easy task. Philip Bloom maybe joking about shooting ducks but had you done so you would have used natural lighting and therefore you wouldn't have put your self in such a difficult position.Narrative stories need to be lit carefully.

6) I was one of the first to respond, not too harshly i think, but i don't like hiding behind anonymity.My full name is konstantinos stag.You can find me on flickr : http://www.flickr.com/photos/56158271@N08/

7)I think you are a smart person and you will probably figure it out.

November 28, 2012

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konstantinos

Nino,

Thank you for taking the time to write up the post and share your experience on this project. I learned a lot, and thanks to people like you who share their work in this way I have resources to go to online that help me become a better filmmaker. I'm sorry you felt you were getting a raw deal with peoples reactions. But that is something we risk when putting our work out there, especially in the internet age. I personally try to avoid commenting on peoples work to much on websites, for a number of reasons which I wont get into. But since this discussion errupted I wanted to share my criticism with you. Please ignore it if you wish.

1. Don't take out the 2 color tones in the re-grade. I think it works. If anything I would make it more subtle. keep the very cool for the 'mob boss' at the beginning, but when Eric is in the hotel room (space he shares with Alex and Maurice) keep it cool, but less cool, so it's less jarring with the warm of the two kids making out. So it's not so obvious. I particularly like the transition from the cool to warm as she comes down the stairs.

My reaction to the color grade (and my undersatnding of the critiques I read - I have not read all the comments) was that it was inconsistent. The problem is not the 2 looks but that each look (particulary the warm on) is inconsistent. Skin looks crisp in one shot and muddy in the next, shapes are defined and then flat. There are some good ideas here, but they are sloppy in their execution.

The grade, like the sound edit, feels rushed. Which you admit was because you goal was to get out of the gate first. That is very telling about this process and it shows in the results. Now that doesn't mean you get a pass. I could be understanding if you some producer or executive was forcing you to put it out, and you were saying, 'but it's not done.' This was a limitation you put on yourself.

2. I didn't care for the story. I felt it was a little simplistic and didn't particularly interest me. Now because of that I start to look everything else, and when that doesn't hold water it's a quick spiral down.

3. Personally I didn't care for the actors performances. They were all good. But I come from and acting background so I am very hard to please and am not satisfied if I'm not wowed in some way. Now that's not to say that these are bad actors, You may not have had time to get rehearse enough, or the director was lacking. I don't know. I have to see more of their work. But from this my reaction was "Meh."

4. Really that's my critique of all of it. It feels rushed. Therefore seems un-inspired and 'Meh'. Not bad, just 'Meh.' The lighting, the choices, the shots chosen, the sound. Personally, when I look at your production shots and see all the resources you had available I think it's such a waste to have put that to use on something as rushed and therefore bland as this. I think that may be some of the source of the vitriol you've had poured on you. This community (NFS in specific and the internet DIY flimmakers in general) is made up of a wide range of people, from those who make a living doing this work, to those who make a living blogging about doing this work, to those who talk about this work but never make anything. From those who can only afford a Canon Rebel with kit lenses for their projects to those who have massive budgets and financial backing. As someone who doesn't have tons of resources I get frustrated when I see those resources wasted elsewhere. But hopefully that leads me (and others) to work harder to make better movies.

All that said. Again thank you for sharing. It's an act of daring for an artist to share their work, and I appreciate the effort you put into all of it. Also, I'm not going to sit here and critique your work without sharing mine. Below is a link to a short I made this summer. Just got my first film festival rejection letter today. Very exciting. For some context: This was shot in 2 days. I spent $300 out of pocket on the production. It's my first narrative short. I'm not terribly interested in being a DP (though I had to on this one). I'm more interested in directing. Please tear it apart, if you like. I would love to hear everything that is wrong with it. You have experience I don't have. I would love to learn from it.

http://www.michaelmarkhamonline.com/2012/08/pinecone/
Password: Beckett

All the best,
Michael

November 28, 2012

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Nino, I don't see anyone trolling in these comments. Just people giving their opinion about your short, nothing is perfect not even your short. Just man up and learn from this constructive critisism...
Very childish of you to whine about so called "trolling"

November 27, 2012

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Ardon

Sorry for the troll comment, it was untrue and an overreaction, I apologize. Please read my detailed reply above.

November 27, 2012

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https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-DL3ovrDNFe8/ULSgpq-P3hI/AAAAAAAAA2E/x...

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-kPetyIDnmSQ/ULSgumrQheI/AAAAAAAAA2M/E...

Thanks for the DPX, I did some quick curves adjustment with photoshop (color won't open the 4K dpx on my computer). And I think that the problem may come from the colorist. When we compare my "grading" (I "corrected" the highlights roll-off that aren't really good) to his grading, his skintones are greenish (and too bright for a bar scene in my opinion). Of course grading doesn't recover a bad cinematography but in this case even if the cinematography/grading looks really french (I'm french and it looks a lot like many other french movies except for video-ish motion, i'm talking about the flat look with no contrast or too much, no subtle lighting...) the problem comes from the grading not the camera in my opinion.

November 27, 2012

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Odysseus

Hi Odysseus, we appreciate your test. Please read my comment above. We know our grade is off and it will be re-done early next week.

November 27, 2012

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@Odysseus, Meh...
On both my color accurate professional monitor and my regular off the shelf consumer monitor, your "corrected" version looks worse. The skin tones look like sweaty chocolate. Like someone from the show "The Jersey Shore."

November 29, 2012

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Ken agree not only is he helping us by showing work, he will also provide raw files, how he graded or not is an opinion and most importantly he is giving an example of a different workflow of raw that is not easily accessible on the web right now. '

Looking for to c100 shots and footage, it might be the camera of choice

November 28, 2012

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Jayyyy

Hey-Ho, let´s troll (since doing a critic analysis is an evil troll activity these days).

I´ve watched the short-movei twice. It´s not bad, but also it´s not good. Cortazar, one of the greatest writers in history used to say that a short story needs to be like a punch in the face with a subtle truth beneath it. Personality I think short-films too. A punch in the face, with a subtle meaning in the root of all that happens in the story guided by a single individual vision makes a short shine.

I don´t think the cinematographer is the one to be called ‘guilty’ by the confusion this short has in itself.
I would say the perpetrators of such confusion and lack of a vision are the director and the editor, mostly.
Why?

Well, as far as I know the shots angles are decided or approved by the director, right? So, if the shots are not that impressive for some viiwers, we should think about the director´s role first. Even Michael Bay is a proud shooter and pays attention in the angles and shots and stuff ( after all, at least in something he has to pay attention! :D) So, someone correct me if I´m wrong, but the director should be the one who chooses camera angles ans stuff.

The editor ‘guilty’ for me is more evident than ever in the parallel sequence of the male killer driving his car in parallel to the couple kissing in the back of another car (a cab probably). It is a bit confusing, can give the impression the male killer is driving the couple, and not that it is a parallel montage. Maybe a shot of the couple entering in a cab could solve this. And the fact the couple has a overall warm light atmosphere and the male killer has a bluish light add to the idea of ‘inconsistence’ in the lightning too.
Also the fight shots sound fake to me. Who to blame? The cinematographer or the editor or both? Doesn´t matter.

About the inconsistence of the lighting, I think it´s not an accident. If we pay attention, all sequence with the couple is filled with warm light, while all the scenes with the male killer is lit with more of a cold, cool colors. The inconsistence for me come out of it, the difference of warm light for the lovin´couple and cold light for the male killer, because by using parallel montage/editing, the shock of these two different looks is strong, since the editing process was not that good in showing the difference and also because the director did not work to give us enough spatial and architectural information when doing the transitions from one timeline to other.

Also I have to agree, the music is almost a caricature, because it tries to add an atmosphere in the movie that was not there, it almost make it sound like a comedy in the beginning.

Sorry for being a troll, nino. But it was a great experience for me, we learn more from ours and other people mistakes than with anything else. Cruel but truth.

November 27, 2012

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guto novo

Troll.

November 27, 2012

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Ant

My troll comment was out of line. I apologize.

November 27, 2012

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Hey Guto,

Sorry about the troll comment, it was unnecessary and untrue, and I apologize. Just a gut reaction to some nasty comments (some on other sites) that I gave in to - we're all just human. I learned from this.

Actually, I really have to thank you for your detailed feedback. It proves to me one thing: The grading idea didn't work.

The director wanted to show the two interwoven storylines in two different ways - they were supposed to look different because they take place at different times, and the viewer only realizes this at the very end. He and the editor actually made the "past" events black and white in post in the first edit. I strongly opposed to that because if I had known that I would have lit it completely differently. So we found a compromise and tried to make the grade look very different - the problem was, for one we had around 3-4 hours in the middle of the night at the grading suite, for another it simply didn't work and we were too blind to see it.

Please see my other responses in this comment:
http://nofilmschool.com/2012/11/canon-c500-4k-short-film-alex/comment-pa...

A re-grade will be done. I will let you guys know when it's up. Appreciate your thoughts on this.

November 27, 2012

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cool nino. I did not want to be atroll either (even my spock ears are so sexy! :D).
I do like a lot your C300 short. Love the shots there. Here, by what you say, i guess you all are suffering from the actual fever of thinking the look in post and not in pre-production. But to shoot fast and to finish fast the thinking process always pay the price. That's why master Kubrick always stressed that having time to think the project (even during shooting) is the gold of filmmaking. :)

I think this could have being a great slick short (as Tarkovski used to say, to make a great short movie is even harder than making a full feature movie!) if you guys had more time in hands! :)

Thanks for the feedback too!
Keep shooting 'till you reach the cinematography heaven, mate! (talent for that, as your other short demonstrate, you have! Take your time and became the diamond inside! :)

luv.

November 27, 2012

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guto novo

November 27, 2012

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michael

it stinks and everyone knows it

4k isn't saving this camera.

November 27, 2012

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James Carr

am i the only one who thinks that the skin colors are very wrong? it's the same as if you film with a 5D2 with the marvel cine profil on it. Seems like the red is shifted to orange so the skins looses depth.

November 27, 2012

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stefan

You are right, our grade is bad. A re-graded version will be posted next week. The camera does better than that. I promise - download the DPX stills, ungraded: http://nino.macbay.de/ALEX_C500/DPX_stills_ALEX.zip

November 27, 2012

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Honestly it woud be hardpressed and hard for anyone to judge based on compressed vimeo footage, However with that sad, judging by the down REs 4k to 1080/720 web videos compressed from 2k or higher, this does not impress much.

Over the years its amazing becuase i can for most videos tell within a few shots/minutes if it was shot on 2k or higher, with that said, im not impressed with this footage vs the internal quality of the C300 footage.

The C300 is the camera im really considering now, long battery life, high iso , light weight, value media storage internally, and most importantly ready out the box /capable of gracing the big screen out the box. Its just the crazy price.

MY real question is and many for that matter is if the C100 footage would match or be similar to that of c300 considering that it will be only 25MBPS, ive been told that it should not matter too much and ALBECINE is saying that it will have same 4k sensor as c300, but will it downrez from 4k and most improtantly how would the h.264 c100 codec hold up on the big screen.

Just wondering can the c100 grace the big screen is it capapble with a h.264 codec internally

November 27, 2012

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Jayyyy

I should be able to get my hands on the C100 next week or so, really curious about what you are mentioning too. Especially when using a Ninja 2 for external recording. Will compare it to my own C300, post the results and share my thoughts.

November 27, 2012

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@Nino that would be great buddy, might even start a fund for you if you do a test with the c100 for us, i guess the real and only important test is what the footage will look like blown up on a projector.

Because honestly i think people put to much emphasis on Raw these days, not to say that it is not important. I if you have an important scene/ establishing shot that needs that right color graded look then Raw is great, but at same time the c300 on big screen was praised for its look and could be gaded just fine.

As far as the short, alot of people are complaining, it may be do to the look they wanted to go for, but all in all thanks NINO for the post and contributions to community, but really want to see if the c100 can hold up on big screen.

Also does anyone know if the c100 will downREZ 4k from sensor to hdmi or is it just 1080p, C100 WITH ATOMOS could be amazing, not a big fan of external recorder rigs , i mean would it be to clubmersome . If i see a compact rig, then its c100 all day.

November 27, 2012

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Jayyyy

Huh. Yeah, I agree with Joe in terms of digital quality. Red (and the Scarlet specifically) is far worse off as a company because of those cooling issues. Fans won't do it. It has to be completely silent obviously. Cool film tho.

November 27, 2012

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Not sure what you mean? You have complete control over the fan speed with Red and can turn them silent during recording. Never experienced a single issue in 10 month with Scarlet.

November 27, 2012

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Michael

Honestly, I think people are being too harsh. First off, a lot of people here criticize and never put up their own work. It's easy to sit around and bash people actually being creative while you sit at your computer feeling superior because you just know that "one day" you are going to create something that is sooooo groundbreaking. You only get better by DOING...not talking. Yes, criticism is necessary. But we can, and should, do it in a way that is helpful and leads us to be better artists. Let's be honest...ain't NO ONE (me included) on these forums that's producing material that's at the absolute top of the field (if we were, we wouldn't be on these forums). We ALL have things to learn. We should be encouraging each other to take big, huge, messy risks and learn from it collectively. I think Mr. Leitner was insulted (and I think rightfully so) because of HOW some people shared their critiques. At the end of the day, it's all just opinions.....and when people speak as if they are the absolute authority...it tends to rub people the wrong way.
Secondly, the short wasn't awful by any means. Yes, there were some things that I feel were better executed than others (again, my opinion) ...but I think it's childish and insulting to the filmmakers to act as if there weren't any positive and successful aspects of this short...because there were. There was artistry involved in this... it wasn't a couple of guys shooting girls in bikini's with a flipcam. I bet if people shared their opinions...positive or negative...in a manner that felt like we were trying to help someone in our community become better at what their craft...we would all benefit from these interactions. But I suppose it's easier to tear people down and sit around convincing yourself that you are the next Fassbinder....

November 27, 2012

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danbury

Thanks, I think you really got my initial gut reaction :-)

November 27, 2012

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I agree. Of all the people who said "not impressed", or pointed out what they thought was wrong with the film, hardly any of them gave more than a first name or psuedonym, and not one of them gave a link to their own work. They offered criticism, but not much that could be considered constructive.

Let's all remember that this isn't a multimillion dollar professional effort that's made to make millions of dollars... a lot of it is for the benefit of professionals and indies like us - particularly since he's giving out the RAW files for people to experiment with.

November 28, 2012

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Ben Howling

For the price you pay for a c500 (and I don't care if you rent it, it's still high in price) you would think that the fan would turn off when rolling. Man Canon is just losing me all together. Of course I started out as a sound Guy and then went on to make my on Projects, and yes sound is very important to me.

November 27, 2012

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Aron Hethcox

Yep I was disappointed by that too. But I already heard that they are working on a fix, actually the one I am proposing in my blog post:
http://ninofilm.net/blog/2012/11/25/canon-eos-c500-review-short-film-alex/

November 27, 2012

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Has a wild things ending.

November 27, 2012

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Aron Hethcox

This short film does no justice for this camera what so ever.
As proven when used effectively by professionals (Cronenweth) it can create amazing images.
The lighting and composition used in the piece robbed it from looking good. Very amateur on all levels.
It was all over the place with Color temp, Camera movement and style. Not to forget cheesy title graphics and poor sound design and score.
As for the Skin tones I'm guessing they were basing things off of the Canon Log image ( raw and basically colorless) unless they were using some sort of color assist while shooting. If not you'll have no luck seeing what color your lights are producing. And leaving you with the idea that you can fix it in post because you shot "RAW" You need to be aware of all light source's within your scene and adjust and control them.
I have the C300 and although it is not my favorite camera I can create far more superior looking imagery than this project. Not to mention the amazing low light capabilities.
At the end of the day these are all just tools for helping us tell our story, it's up to the collaboration of the crew (Director, Cinematographer, Production designer, etc..) to make the film look a certain way.

I look forward to seeing more footage released using the C500, when put in the right hands I think some of you will change your minds.

P.S I'm not saying that this camera is AMAZING and that its worth the pricetag.

November 27, 2012

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Kyle

Guyy great stuff man, appreciate someone actually commenting with facts behind their statement as opposed to just outlash criticism. Appreciate info, still learning composition and other important non dialogue to filming before i even attempt to touch a camera to make a short. I mean i do music videos alot but want my first short/film to be nice, might have to get more info a pay you for filming info, we need more useful insight to help us all, GOOD stuff and info

November 27, 2012

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Jayyyy

JEEZ! A lot of harsh negative comments. Now we are all entitled to opinions and my close friend Nino did get a wee bit defensive with the unnecessary T comment which he was big enough to apologise for, repeatedly like Bart in the opening of the Simpsons...you know what though? This was fun and pretty well made! He had the camera to check out for a few days. He could have done what something less contentious...maybe films some ducks perhaps? But no, he made a sexy fun homage to loads of different films with a HOT as hell leading lady who I now need to work with, obviously just because of her acting talent. NOW, if you had wanted to see ducks I can see if Canon UK will loan me one. I know the footage with be quacking...ARF! ...OK I will get my coat :)

P.S. Always nice to thank someone for making an effort to make something and do mega write up for the community for no pay before you trounce them. It's more polite that way! You know like... "Nino, thanks so much for taking the time to do this and that great write up though, but your film utterly SUCKS!!!"...well maybe not quite like that! :)

November 28, 2012

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I read the comments before I watched the film and I expected a disaster!

You guys are way, way, way off.

You may not like the look of the camera [I'm not a big fan of the C-range], but your criticism of Nino & co are so off-base they are laughable.

They did a really good job of the film.

Tech note: I wonder if shooting at 4k if counter-productive in that, it accentuates every tiny detail - especially in the actors skin. I think it's that added detail that prompted some to speak of that video-y feel.
I think that's more a factor of the camera and resolution, rather than the DP's skillz.

November 28, 2012

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Wayne K.

Hello All,

I am new to the site and love all of the great content here. The Canon C500 is a camera I am excited about. Niño and his team did a great job with this film and camera. I appreciate the use of spatial and temporal continuity to convey their non-linear film. Using colors to distinguished time, characters, and the mood was a nice touch as well.

I can understand all the levels that went into this production from pre-production to post-production; so having this camera (and I'm sure many constraints) was a huge and fun learning experience. From my screen, colors and the smoke looked great. Keep up the good work and I look forward to seeing more from the community!

- Peace

November 28, 2012

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Jeremiah Jimeno

I think people need to remember that this is a camera test. It's meant to show what someone can expect just grabbing this camera and shooting something with it. Sure the lighting may not have been perfect, shooting wide open may not have been the best decision, or the color not what everyone subjectively would have preferred. But it's a CAMERA TEST! Not a Micheal Bay Explosions and Robot blockbusterfest.

Even if this is an example of the worst case scenario of what a filmmaker can expect, then it is a valuable test. So what, Nino and crew aren't Christopher Doyle... But he did offer a lot of his time and effort to offer you a peak at a new camera. Those of you getting hung up over the story and the editing on a camera test need to remember the point of a CAMERA TEST. I highly doubt that more than a small percentage of NFS readers would be able to produce anything better. If so then you would have been contacted by one of the major players in the camera world to do a test.

I for one don't think Nino was out of line with the "T" comment. A lot of the comments are just being overly and repetitively cynical and critical of elements that really don't matter in this instance. The image is what is in question here. not the story. Not the abilities of the camera man or the editor. Sometimes we don't have optimum lighting conditions.

I also love the flip-flop comments on different cameras:
"This DSLR footage isn't sharp enough"
"That 4k image is toooo sharp I can see too many details in the skin"
"That cameras resolving power is soo low, I could never shoot with that"
"I can see her skin, it's so unflattering at 4k"
"wah wah wah! We have cameras that outperform anything we have ever had, at a super low price point. The bourgeoisie now have the potential to shoot great images too... I'm going to complain about everything"

Sometimes we suck as a community. Instead of helping each other grow, we seem to enjoy ripping each other apart publicly, and watching each other squirm instead. Does it really make you feel better about your own craft to be that so uppity?

November 29, 2012

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I must be the only person in the world who doesn't like Cronenweth's style. He's been attached to some of my favorite films and when I go back and watch the trailers to refresh my memory about the look of them, I am surprised at how bad they were lit.
I guess different strokes for different folks. He's much too naturalistic for me.
My dislike of his work came after seeing Hitchcock recently. It was one of the ugliest films I've ever seen!

April 9, 2013

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Anon

I was stunned to read this was a professional grade done at 'a big post prod house'. I can only imagine the CGer wasn't paid and didn't feel the need to put effort in as I think we can all agree looks less than flattering.

March 16, 2014

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KC