Monday, May 9, 2011

3D Not for Me

It’s raining out, it’s Monday and I’m blogging. What else is a boy too lazy to put on real pants supposed to do? To entertain myself I’d like to bring up a subject that I have been debating with myself and a few close friends: 3D movies – Visual nuisance or visual awesome?

I watched Thor yesterday and shelled out the extra 6 or 7 bucks to see it in 3D. After the movie was done I was left wondering if it was worth it? Did it add anything to the movie? I came to the conclusion, for this particular flick, it did not. Not only do I find wearing glasses troublesome while I’m watching a movie (sorry to my four eyed friends, but God gave me near perfect vision, Suckas) but I found the 3D effects not worth the extra cash. Sure they were neat at the beginning, but it just seems like a gimmick to charge extra for a movie ticket. Does 3D add anything to the story? No. Is it taking away from the actual visuals on screen? Yes. Look at it this way. The film was not shot in 3D but was drug through a post production process I’m going to call 3D-affacation, the process which a movie shot on a normal movie camera is infused with (caps for dramatic effect, please read in deep voice) REAL D 3D. So the director really had nothing to do with this and it was never his intention for it to be seen in 3D. Let’s take Avatar for example. James Cameron fully intended this movie to be in 3D and the visuals he filmed/created were meant to blow our minds, and for the most part, they did. Thor was not filmed in 3D, and, although the visuals at times were different, I can’t say they were enhanced.

As an amateur filmmaker I would want people to see my movie the way I directed it. If that movie was shot in 3D you better believe I intend that you watch it that way. But if I shoot it in good old digital “2D” (I quote 2D because these movies aren’t really in 2D but are projected on a 2D plane, blah blah blah..) I sure as heck want you to see it in that format. Makes me think of pan and scan, the process that 16:9 films are transferred to fit on your dinosaur 4:3 screen in effect cutting away a lot of the visuals the director meant you to see -- yeah I know there are black bars on the screen, just deal with it old people, that’s how movies are supposed to be seen. If the director wanted to shoot the thing in a 4:3 ratio, he damn well would have, so you should respect him and watch it in the intended format. Directors pour their lives into movies, the least you can do is put up with the black bars or buy a TV fit to watch 16:9 movies (they’re cheap as peanuts now anyway, sorry for the pan and scan rant). The point I’m making here is that like pan and scan, 3D moves the picture away from the author’s vision, and therefore isn’t a true representation of what he imagined. I’m not saying that directors appose 3D-affacation, but I think it should be known that some never intended it to be that way and that it’s a way for studios to cheaply add “value” to any given product. Anything can be transformed to 3D now and it’s sad that the choice is usually out of the director’s control (as far as I know anyway).

I guess what I’m trying to say here is don’t buy into the whole 3D experience, it’s only there to make money, not add to the story. If you’re in the mood for it, go for it, but please, for the love of film, don’t let it become the way you see movies in theaters. Would Casablanca be any better in 3D? If you say yes, then you’re missing the whole point of film. What do you guys think? Comment away!

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