Lots of high-grossing older films including some that were released in the 90s have an almost imperceptible shake that is maybe due to the conversion from film to digital. You can only see it in static scenes and it's easier to notice in objects close to the edge of the screen.

For those of us preoccupied with this kind of artefact, is there a tool or a (ffmpeg, vlc, mpv, mpc-hg, ...) filter that can remove this shakiness ? It seems like a very simplified version of the stabilization done by action cameras, since it looks like roughly all frames are always offset by some small amount (2 to 10 pixels or so).

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This is most often caused by interlace artifacts as televisions and video devices prior to 1998 used interlace to pass video between them. This included VCR's DVD players TV's (even HDTV's at the time) and capture cards used to digitize content. As the displays were also interlaced at the time the images looked good. Today all displays are progressive so content from that era has to be de-interlaced either at the same frame rate or double if content is film source or very fast motion. Use this:

ffmpeg -i infile.mp4 -vf bwdif=0:-1:0 -c:a aac -c:v ibx264 outfile.mp4

Or use this for fast action or sports action:

ffmpeg -i infile.mp4 -vf bwdif=1:-1:0 -c:a aac -c:v ibx264 outfile.mp4

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