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The Incredible Hulk: Struggle for Control

lapis molari

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The Incredible Hulk: Struggle for Control edits the 2008 Norton film. Not to be confused with Hulk: Daddy Issues which edits the 2003 Bana film. I plan to complete both in 2021.

UPDATE: VERSION 2 is released in 1080p. The SD deleted scenes have been properly upscaled.

Here are two cover options for The Incredible Hulk. Which would persuade you to watch this edit?

Hulk%20(2008)%20cover.jpg


Hulk%20(2008)%20cover%20v4-comic.jpg


The filmmakers have said their cave scene was inspired by Loeb's Grey Hulk story. But Jack Kirby and Bill Everett got there first, and they did it in green which I like better on our hero. For anyone who reads the text balloons: I replaced everything on the left page, but only 3 balloons on the right page.
 
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Jrzag42

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I prefer the second cover personally. I don't know what it is but I feel like the first one looks a bit plain to me. I also generally love the idea of using comic covers as posters/covers for fanedits.

I'm very excited to see what you do with this, I'm a big fan of Tomahawk's extended edition and I hadn't really considered what could be cut out or otherwise changed from it.
 

Dawnrazor

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I think both covers are great!
Especially the comic cover but it may not suite the Edit as I expect that cover is for an Cartoon movie.
So even if I like the comic cover more I Would choose the first one.

Great work on both!
 

lapis molari

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Hulk - Struggle For Control is ready to smash ... your loudspeakers with Hulk's thunderclap. 🙂

I had planned to release this edit as a double-feature together with my in-the-works HULK: Daddy Issues. However, I lost a bunch of files in the QNAP NAS ransomware attack this year.
- Fortunately, Struggle For Control was completed days before the ransomware hit. But many work files were lost, making it so much harder to revisit the edit for additional tweaking.
- Daddy Issues was not so fortunate. Though after losing progress to two computer problems, it's obvious that the third time must be the charm! This Hulk too will see the fanedited light of day!

But I digress. Back to 2008 Hulk: The edit is only in 720p, because the 480p deleted scenes really didn't look good enough when rendered in 1080p. I don't have any proper upscaling software, I simply rendered the SD scenes together with the HD blu-ray file in Vegas. If any of you really want to test it for yourselves, let me know and I can share the 15GB, 17Mb/s, 1080p version with you. I find the transitions more jarring than in the 720p version (having viewed both on tablet, PC, and projector screen). I did add surround channels to all deleted scenes, so the audio is 5.1 throughout.

I admit that am not completely satisfied with this edit. Then why release it, you ask? Because it's the best that I think it can be, though it falls short of what I want it to be. Gone is the bloat that the theatrical and Tomahawk's version suffer from, added are all the deleted scenes with references that pay off in later MCU movies, minimized are the shots where Hulk and Abomination look like computer-game avatars, and reduced are the shots of Betty staring past the camera like a deer in headlights. Now if I just had access to Marvel's editing room to update all the CGI in this movie, AND remaster the deleted scenes, and ... and ... and. You get my point: the available material limits what this edit can achieve.

All in all, I present you with the still-flawed but more-enjoyable story of Banner and Ross' STRUGGLE FOR CONTROL!

P.S. @tomahawk , thank you again for your edit. That was my starting point more so than the theatrical cut!
 
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lapis molari

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@bionicbob, That's an impressively fast review! Thanks for the thorough feedback.

I'll check for the jitters you mention. I didn't notice that on my PC or projector. If I can find the cause, I will certainly fix that! :sick:

And I'll double-check the audio transitions and volume you mention.

Interesting that Coulson stood out for the superior picture quality. I guess I could have down-scaled that part to SD before rendering it in 720p.
 

Dwight Fry

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I'll check for the jitters you mention. I didn't notice that on my PC or projector. If I can find the cause, I will certainly fix that! :sick:
Shooting in the dark here, but might that be a case of the old common "pulldown flags" thing from the days of DVD?
 

lapis molari

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Hm. I put the 29.97fps SD deleted scenes into Vegas and rendered them at 23.976fps at 720p (with a little color adjustment and sharpening). I figured Vegas knows better than I what to do. Is there a better way? One that gets a smoother result?

To fix Betty's out of sync "It's okay", I have to re-rip my blu-ray anyway. So if you have a recommendation for improving the picture quality, better than what Vegas got me, do tell. :)

The deleted scene of Ross saying "I want what's inside of him" on the airplane is extra shaky because they filmed it that way. It's the cheapest way to suggest they're in motion, but the cameraman overdid it. I'll put that scene through Deshaker to test if it looks better, but then I lose pixels on all sides making the resolution even lower. Perhaps the smoothing trick could work that @The Scribbling Man is using in his Jason and the Argonauts edit?

@bionicbob, I think the dialog in the deleted scenes is correctly volume matched to the other scenes, But in the above-mentioned airplane scene, the surrounding noises are noticably quieter than in the preceding scene (which has fairly loud music). I'll raise the volume of the airplane hum without increasing the dialog.
 

Dwight Fry

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Hm. I put the 29.97fps SD deleted scenes into Vegas and rendered them at 23.976fps at 720p (with a little color adjustment and sharpening). I figured Vegas knows better than I what to do. Is there a better way? One that gets a smoother result?
As I suspected, it appears to be the pulldown flags issue. In a nutshell, the material in the disc is most likely already 23.976 actually, but DVD standards dictated it had to be 29.97 so pulldown flags were added to have it play as such. You need to remove them upon ripping (haven't done it myself in about 10 years, must check how to do so again, most probably is in the old Captain Khajiit tutorials though) and that'll get rid of both the frame rate issue and of most "combing" problems derived from interlacing.
 

lapis molari

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Here's the clip of Ross in the plane.

First is the original blu-ray rip at 29.97fps (with audio):

Second is that file changed in Vegas to 23.976 WITHOUT dropping frames (note absolute frames, change frame rate, stretch back to correct absolute frames). Rendered in 1080p without upscaling, which in itself shouldn't make the image better or worse.

I think the 29.97 footage looks correct, but that's of course also the speed of movement that I'm used to seeing in this scene. What do you think?
 

The Scribbling Man

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I would personally never trust Vegas to convincingly convert different footage at different framerates. When you have all your footage in your timeline to edit, you want it all to be the same framerate - otherwise it's either going to look blurred or jittery, because it is dropping or blending frames to make it fit the project. I also wouldn't rely on it to deinterlace. Your project settings need to match up with your source, or it's liable to look funny. This kind of thing (fps conversion and interlacing etc.) always gives me a bit of a headache, and I try to avoid it if I can because it's not one size fits all and I'm not very knowledgeable on the subject - I've typically relied on the advice of others. As Dwight Fry has mentioned, there are some technical guides on the forums that may be helpful. Cap Kahit is very knowledgeable on this stuff, but sadly he is no longer active here. His threads and posts remain though (I think).

The 29.976 deleted scene doesn't look terrible, but it does look wrong. It is low res, but part of the fuzziness and what keeps it from sitting well with the eyes is not to do with the shaky cam, but because of stuff like this:

1629125787659.png


Note the little bumps around the light which should be straight. It looks to me like something akin to interlacing (I don't know if you rendered this out with vegas deinterlacing, but if you did - case in point).

If you download mediainfo (unless you already have it), you can use that to check all the details of your file. If it says it is interlaced footage, it likely needs to be deinterlaced. If it says it's progressive, then the footage probably looks that way because it was interlaced previously and has been badly converted for the blu-ray release. This is important to determine because if it is the latter, there's not going to be much you can do about it. Dwight Fry sounds like he knows more than me and may be on the money, but I would suggest making sure with mediainfo first to be sure.

Beyond that, I hesitate to comment further. I am far from being the most technically minded person on the forum. My process for my argonauts edit involves increasing framerate and creating new frames to fill in gaps. That's not going to help in this scenario, and the shakiness of the footage isn't what needs resolving.
 

lapis molari

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@Dwight Fry , thanks for pointing me to the right thread. I'll go experiment with that!

In the mean time, I rendered the clip of Ross on the plane a few different ways.
v1 = original (29.97 interlaced).
v2 = deinterlaced at 23.976fps and rendered at 1080p using Vegas. It looks slightly blurred, not crisper.
v3 = deinterlaced at 23.976fps using Handbrake. To my surprise it looks no better than the original.
(v4 not shown = deinterlace AND medium deblock in Handbrake. Looked worse.)
v5 = deinterlace at 23.976 and rendered at 720p using TMPGenc Video Mastering Works 5. Specific setting: inverse pulldown and combing reduction prioritized. I like this best. Improvement is also noticeable when watching the video. (y)
(v6 not shown = use TMPGenc with the default deinterlace settings. The result was similar to Handbrake and the original.)

So if Captain Khajiits thread doesn't get me to a better result, I can at least improve the image to the degree I found in v5. Ugh, I do not know enough about the technical details of these conversions.
 

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  • v2 Vegas (23.976 progressive PAR1-1).jpg
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  • v3 Handbrake (23.976 deinterlaced PAR 32-27).jpg
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  • v5 TPMGEnc (inverse pulldown, combing reduction prioritized).jpg
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Dwight Fry

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Better remove the pulldown flags upon ripping if possible. Think of them as a fake mustache: let's say you are clean shaven (23.976) but for a particular purpose (NTSC DVD standard) you need to appear to have a mustache (29.97). So you put on a fake one (the pulldown flags). So far so good. But now you need to appear clean shaven again, so you can either peel off the fake mustache (remove pulldown flags upon ripping) or cover it with flesh-colored makeup (process the video any other way).
 

bionicbob

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Wish I could be of more help or offer suggestions, unfortunately I am a newbie with Vegas and I am still struggling to learn how it all works. But please don’t let a few technical hiccups detract you from taking pride in the improved narrative you created with this fan edit. 👍
 

lapis molari

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Thank you, @bionicbob. You're too kind!

Yes, I am proud of the improved narrative. This film certainly deserved it, and I'm happy with the narrative outcome.

I'm not even beating myself up too much over the inferior picture quality of the deleted scenes. It's inherent to this material. I will experiment some more this week to get the image calmer. Not just for this edit, but as learning experience for future edits.

What does flat out embarrass me is the two audio glitches of Betty's out-of-sync line and the raw audio transition when Banner's eyes change in the factory. I know better. I've already cleaned up the factory audio, it was as simple as 1) let the "eyes" audio run 8 frames longer, 2) audio from the next shot 5 frames shorter, and 3) add a 3-frame crossfade.
 

lapis molari

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Alright! The correction is done:
- The two audio flaws are corrected.
- The deleted scenes picture quality is improved in three of them: Ross on plane, Ross in General Joe's office, Ross smoking in his own office. Now the deliberate shaky-cam on the plane is not so troubling anymore, and the cigar smoke in Ross' office floats smoothly.
- I didn't achieve a useful improvement for the other deleted scenes.
- I rendered at a higher bitrate (matching the deleted scenes bitrate on the blu-ray, to minimize their quality loss).
- Number of frames, commentary track, and subtitle tracks are unchanged.
 

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"I didn't achieve a useful improvement for the other deleted scenes." What issues were you seeing or had you just not tried them yet? There are so many great nuggets in the deleted scenes of this movie.
 

lapis molari

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"I didn't achieve a useful improvement for the other deleted scenes." What issues were you seeing or had you just not tried them yet? There are so many great nuggets in the deleted scenes of this movie.

Oh, I used lots of the deleted material. My "didn't achieve" refers only to the new convert I did to get the 29.97fps interlaced deleted scenes to look better in 23.976fps progressive. In 3 scenes that yielded a visible improvement, but in the other 7 scenes the difference was negligible.
 
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