I feel like I'm in my own personal Renaissance

I have made it my mission to watch a lot of movies. I love them and wish I had spent more of my youth indulging in them, even though I did pretty well anyway. But now, at this point, I’m enjoying them more thoroughly than I ever did before. That’s partially due to being older, having more life experience, and being able to understand the movies I watch in ways I never could without those things.

Another reason I am loving watching them is the quality of the images themselves. It’s true that the beauty isn’t necessary to make a movie good, but the beauty of some movies is what the movie is about. And all quality movies set out to look good in their own way. The aesthetics are particular to most movies. But where I really want this to go is that when I watched movies as a younger person, I didn’t care about the quality of the images. Honestly, we couldn’t. Our stuff sucked. The only place to see a max-quality image was at the theater. interestingly enough, I’ve always been an iMAX fan. If I want to see a movie and it’s in iMAX, that’s how I’m seeing it. It just never really extended to home.

Old TVs and VHS players are an artifact of a time that is (thankfully) long gone. Personally, I have entered the world of 4K HDR and DolbyVision. These advancements have made watching old movies I was very familiar with seem like I’m watching them for the first time. After years of saying things like, “Don’t rent the HD version, SD is fine” I’ve finally seen the light. A properly graded 4K movie (say, Blade Runner) is stunning. It looks ridiculously good. And it made the movie actually make better sense to me. Seeing it in a clearer way helped!

In fact, the pursuit of top quality imagery in my movies has taken on a life of its own as a hobby. I now buy movies with regularity and spend my time ripping them and encoding them for my personal Plex server (sorry, it’s just for me). I’ve taken pains to get the color correct and have optimized my encoding process so that my movies look great. DolbyVision is a bit of a tough nut to crack, but that’s fine. I keep my discs, so if I need to watch something with that, I’ll pop the disc in and play from the source.

All this was to say that if you were like me and didn’t care about picture quality in movies, take the leap for a bit. I think you’ll find yourself in a much nicer, and prettier, world—at least while you’re watching.