you can make a digital file always look like film but you have to be brave.
blocking the shadows, adding cross color shifts, limiting the color gamut and adding grain and blur is a tough task not everybody is able to do.
the only thing i like and use often is grain it can change the appearance of a print rather strong and lead to a greater perceptual sharpness.
True that, which is why so much digital work looks too clean to me, at least for my editorial and personal work. I think film looks better in print. I'm talking negative film. I'd rather look at some of Sarah Moon's underexposed, blury Type 55 prints than, say, a digital print from a photographer I like, well, lets just say Michael Thompson. I like Michael's stuff. Good prints from a Chromira machine. Nice stuff. I still like my Sarah Moon prints better, all scratched and dark and blury.
The only film that I've used that blocks shadows is Velvia, but most chomes do that. Not sure about color gamut. I know digital can be more accurate than film, no doubt.
In truthe, I've never really been convinced by digital. The Dalsa chips are great. The P30 is awesome. Great files, but I never warmed to it. I'm not trying to argue or change anyone's mind, but a lot of digital work, my commercial work included, seems to have an aesthetic that appeals to anal retentive adolescent boys, striving for perfection at 200%. It reminds me of the that horrific movie "The Transporter". Martial arts, guns, waxing the perfect black paint of the Audi. Gilding the lilly, so to speak. That is not to say that there isn't great digital work out there, I'm not saying that at all. I just think that the nature of digital lends itself to perfection seeking, which is never really attainable, which is why all the boys, mostly, want the latest and the greatest. I think Digital RULES for landscapes and architechture, products, etc. This is where all that perfection and resolution pays off. If I shot buildings and landscapes I would be all digital.