Tuesday, June 14, 2011

3-D is 1-D

I should not have to point out the recent prominence of 3-D films, as anyone who has ever stepped foot near a theater knows. What started out as a gimmick in the 1950s has grown into a gimmick forced down throats of moviegoers everywhere...despite the noticeable difference in production cost. Though several will define it as "cool" or "exciting", mainly those not as concerned with the quality of a picture (rather than cheap thrills), some continue to be less than amused. A notable example is criticism icon and film industry veteran Roger Ebert, who claims that 3-D "creates a fatal break in the illusion of the film". While Mr. Ebert is indeed in the minority, he is certainly not alone. Other names who have expressed their issues include critic Mark Kermode and even director Christopher Nolan, who have both claimed the effect is unnecessary. And though valid arguements have been brought up, 3-D has not only nearly dominated Hollywood, but spread its way to virtually all media imaginable. Starting with the twelve thousand-dollar 3-D TV and even working it's way to video games, with the recently released "Nintendo 3DS" (which doesn't even require glasses). It apears no matter who says what, the gimmick will spread. Part of me awaits the day where I have to put on glasses to read a book.

Where might I stand? Ever since I stumbled upon a single review, Mr. Ebert and I have often seen eye-to-eye...and I was pleased to find out that he shared my opinion. I recall when I first saw a 3-D film in a theater at the age of 10. At that age, not much can make "Spy Kids" better but 3-D. Even that young, it perpetually reminded me of the many pop-out theater attractions at a theme park. And after later seeing the movie normally, I realized not much set it apart from one. If given the chance, watch one in 2-D. You'll see how it truly is to have actors pointing at the camera constantly. It's lucky that cinemas currently have the option of seeing a film in both dimensions, and while picking the "flat" one, it becomes more noticeable what flaws are displayed. Also that you've payed an extra three dollars for lackluster acting, writing, and basically anything else not involved with objects being thrown you. It's dissappointing to think that those said amusement park shows where these things are ignored (attention being put on random 3-D uses for "Ooh!" moments from the crowd) have now merged into mainstream cinema. Exceptions can be made, as it has said to have added depth and emotion to the three billion-grossed "Avatar". This, however, is a rarity. As demonstrated in the lastest "Pirates of the Caribbean" installment, we have again been reminded of how much it reminds us of a pop out book.

Is it realistic? No. Is it worth the extra cash? No. Does it improve a film? To the contrary. Will it make your children amused? Likely. Perhaps that's all something needs to become a worldwide forced phenomenon. I'll admit, I've had my urges to try the "3DS"...out of sheer curiousity. It's been described as the differenece bewtween looking at a painting of fish and looking in an aquarium, which has already been enough for classic games to be relaunched. Even with the rerelease of "Titanic", films are doing the same. The best advice, stick to the 2-D option: your DVD.