A mix of neural networks and depth-aware video frame interpolation

Friday, February 14th, 2020

YouTuber Denis Shiryaev took the Lumière Brothers’ 1896 short clip “Arrival of a Train at La Ciotat” — digitized at 640-by-480 resolution, and 20 frames per second — ran it through some neural networks, and upscaled it to 4K resolution, at 60 fps:

As you can see, it’s not exactly impressive by today’s standards, so Denis used a mix of neural networks from Gigapixel AI and a technique called depth-aware video frame interpolation to not only upscale the resolution of the video, but also increase its frame rate to something that looks a lot smoother to the human eye.


  1. Skeptical Guest says:

    It’s not the same video. Not even close. Judging by the size of the trees in the second video at least 30 or 40 years elapsed between the first video and the second.

    Try again.

  2. Bert says:

    Wow, I didn’t even notice that. Similar setting; didn’t bother to compare. Still, it’s too heavy-handed to be a fraud, so the question is: joke or honest mistake?

  3. Graham says:


    I’m actually left torn.

    That one big tree near the station sign on the left, in front of the station house, appears absent in the original, which does suggest the lapse of many years.

    It’s a nearly decisive case by itself, I admit.

    The train appears to be the same, at least without close inspection. Not impossible it is the same engine or the same class over a span of a few decades in Europe, especially France, even in an age of rapid railway tech development. But noteworthy.

    The style of dress of the people is less indicative of change. On the whole, looks more turn of the century than 1930s, though, even in the “new” video. How little did people’s clothing change in rural France in that era? There’s one woman in the new video dressed VERY old-fashioned for any age group in the 30s.

    The station house on the left of the original is still visible in the new version, with the two oddly pointy trees visible over its roof, so at least it’s likely the same station, not just a similar one.

    Based on the distance to that last, it definitely looks like separate footage taken from significantly farther back on the platform, such that said station house is farther away from the camera. The angle is also different.

    I have doubts, but is the change of angle such that the big tree might not be as near to the sign as it appears from a distance in the “new” video”, and thus is just out of the shot in the original?

    Possible conclusions:

    1. They upgraded a segment of the old film shot from farther down the platform than the before segment shown us. But still 1896.

    2. The whole thing was created using re-enactors and vintage rail equipment, in recent times, using the same station, which at least appears the case.

    3. It’s from circa 1935 and just an old train and a bunch of poorish locals wearing hand me-downs and of conservative disposition.

    The only definite thing is that it’s the same station.

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