3D Revisited

November 28, 2007

Real-D Glasses

Last year I made light of James Cameron’s comments about 3D “saving” the film industry, in short I was of the opinion the film industry was doing just fine and hardly needed saving. I argued that what we needed were better films, better theaters and an overall higher quality movie-going experience, not 3D to convince people to come back to the theaters.

Last night I put my money where my mouth was and plopped down twelve dollars (yes $12, $10 + another $2 for the glasses) to see Beowulf in 3D, it didn’t take long to remember why I was reticent to see another 3D film in the first place. I’ve said it once I’ll say it again, those damn glasses (see above) will always limit 3D to novelty status. The glasses provided were about as uncomfortable as anything I could imagine short of a punch to the face. Seriously, who are they making these things for? Certainly not my seemingly normal sized noggin.

The film itself was fun enough, I suppose, but therein lies the problem all over again. In my estimation if Paramount had taken whatever resources that went into making Beowulf “3D” and diverted them back into making Beowulf a better movie, the film might have helped the industry avoid the least attended mid November time-frame in 14 years. I enjoyed Beowulf, I didn’t enjoy the gimmicky 3D nose tickles and over the top ‘look what we can do’s’. However, that’s not to say I didn’t like some of the effects but I felt they added nothing to the overall experience. Also, based on the trailer for ‘Journey to the Center of the Earth 3D’ screened before Beowulf, I think I’ll just skip that one all together.

3D may be poised to become the next big thing in home entertainment but first it will have to become the next big thing everywhere else. Hollywood seems to be fairly certain films like ‘Beowulf’ in 3D will lure us out of our home theaters and back into the real theaters. But here’s the funny thing about all this the theater vs. home theater nonsense, 3D (in some form or another) will eventually make its way to home theater as well. If Texas Instruments ‘Star Wars in 3D’ demonstration at CEDIA is any example, it’ll be sooner rather than later.

I’m still confused by some of the us versus them posturing from the film industry with regard to 3D, after all this is the same film industry that continues to accelerate home video releases to sometimes just a few months after the theatrical release. If Hollywood was really concerned about maximizing theatrical openings they have a very simple solution available to them, delay all home video releases by at least 4 to 6 months from their theatrical opening. Yeah I wouldn’t hold my breath on that one either.



Posted by Bryan Greenway | | Filed Under Commentary


Comments

  • B.Greenway

    Hey Sam, absolutely its a subjective experience. I wouldn’t even rule out changing my mind, maybe I just haven’t had the right set of circumstances line up yet.

  • B.Greenway

    Hey Sam, absolutely its a subjective experience. I wouldn’t even rule out changing my mind, maybe I just haven’t had the right set of circumstances line up yet.

  • SamInNorthCakalakey

    Not sure I agree. I saw Superman at IMAX in 3D and it was great. I since have seen it many times and those viewings pale in comparison. True Superman was had only 20 minutes of 3D and it was strategically placed but it shows that it can enhance the movie if done correctly, at least for me.

  • SamInNorthCakalakey

    Not sure I agree. I saw Superman at IMAX in 3D and it was great. I since have seen it many times and those viewings pale in comparison. True Superman was had only 20 minutes of 3D and it was strategically placed but it shows that it can enhance the movie if done correctly, at least for me.

  • pb

    I saw the IMAX 3d this past weekend…I would not have gone to the theater to watch if it was not in 3d. Aside from the splitting head ache that started to develop 3/4 of the way into the movie, I had a blast!

  • pb

    I saw the IMAX 3d this past weekend…I would not have gone to the theater to watch if it was not in 3d. Aside from the splitting head ache that started to develop 3/4 of the way into the movie, I had a blast!

  • Murray

    Even if you could get 3D without any glasses or any other discomfort, it will never be more than a novelty. It might improve mediocre action films, but good stories make great films, not effects. And that’s never going to change. If James Cameron truly thinks otherwise, he’s a fool. But more than anything I suspect he just sees dollar signs.

  • Murray

    Even if you could get 3D without any glasses or any other discomfort, it will never be more than a novelty. It might improve mediocre action films, but good stories make great films, not effects. And that’s never going to change. If James Cameron truly thinks otherwise, he’s a fool. But more than anything I suspect he just sees dollar signs.