Fine, natural skin tones, subdued colors... what?? Just cross it, there's much more in there!
According to Fuji this film has extremely fine grain, natural looking skin-tones and subdued color reproduction. Fuji also promises excellent results with pushing up to +2 stops, with “little photographic variation”.
In my experience, all of these are quite true. I got a few rolls of 120 film and a few of 35mm, and shot them on the Diana, the Diana Mini, the Smena Symbol and a Mamiya. I developed in E-6, with and without pushing, and cross processed in C-41. The first 120 roll, which came out of the Diana, I exposed as a 400 iso film (not intentionally). I developed this roll in E-6, pushing it +2 stops. I was pleased with the results: bright colors (nothing crazy), quite accurately reproduced, with nice contrast but with not too much grain. For a +2 pushed film, the granularity was very fine indeed.
Another E-6 processed roll went through the Mamiya, and was not pushed. Nothing exciting here, not in the process and also not in the results. Subdued colors, a bit too much for my taste… The overall look of the photos reminded me of the results coming from some negatives – sharp image, fine details, dull colors.
When crossing the Astia, a beast is released… Punchy, bright colors. Amazing dark blues, beautiful purples and orange-tones. This films cross-tendency is towards the funky purple. You can see it many times in the skies, turning a psychedelic shade of purple… In less favorable light conditions, the purple might take over.
My conclusion is: when not crossed, the Astia likes pushing and plastic lenses (unless you are looking for subdued colors for some reason…), and when crossed, glass lenses take the best out of this shy fella…
So, just buy a few rolls and stick ’em in your camera! If I would read the description of this film first, I am not sure I would have ever bought it… But there more to it the description reads!