Top 5 reasons 3D sucks

3D films were first showed on mass scale in the 50’s, and come back every now and again, but usually to crappy movies that need a selling point, for example “Jaws 3-D” and this year’s “Clash of the Titans.”

Other movies like “Alice in Wonderland” and “How To Train Your Dragon” and most successfully, “Avatar,” joined a group of 3D films that have made up 33 percent of this year’s domestic movie gross, according to the The International 3D Society, and at one point were #1 at the box office 10 out of 14 weeks into 2010. The society also reports that opening weekend 3D ticket revenues are outpacing 2D ticket sales by margins of 2 to 1. The report states that Alice in Wonderland generated over $81 million dollars, or 70 percent of its opening weekend gross revenues, on 3D screens against $34 million in 2D domestic ticket revenue.

And we’re just baffled by it.

Here’s Matt and Brian’s top reasons that 3D is an overused, poor-quality medium.

5. Wearing glasses over glasses: We know this may sound silly, but as two people who wear glasses, it’s really annoying to have another pair of glasses over your glasses. They don’t fit over them well, bouncing around on your ears because the don’t fit well with the glasses that are already gripping your head. And having another set of glasses resting on your nose is uncomfortable. Plus, you have another layer of glass between your eyes and the 3-D glasses, so it skews the experience.

4. The cost: Depending on the theater you go to, it can cost an extra $5 to see a 3D movie. That’s just crap. The old cardboard ones worked fine, they were cheap, but more comfortable and you didn’t feel guilty about throwing them away. I can’t see why the theaters don’t just recycle the glasses, handing them off to the next audience after a cleaning. The films don’t take any special equipment, so there’s no added cost to them there. To me, this just wreaks of film studios trying to wring a few extra bucks out of crappy movies.

3. Headaches: This doesn’t happen to everyone, but it happens to Brian and lots of other folks. Why go to a movie if it just makes you feel crappy?

2. Poor quality:Avatar’s 3D was well done, and the list stops there. I’ve yet to see another 3D film that 1. was worth a shit and 2. was improved in any way from being in 2D. A lot of these movies have nothing added by the 3D, and we’re guessing a lot of them weren’t shot for 3D, but only to be later made 3D. “Clash of the Titans” had nothing added to it. Once and a while a pillar was in the forefront of the picture… Wow… a pillar. It’s like I’m really standing on Mount Olympus, surrounded by crappy acting and corny dialogue.

1. The movies suck:We know, we know. “Avatar,” which we had mixed reviews on, was pretty good. It was a solid movie with amazing special effects and it looked great on 3D.

But here’s a few examples of movies due out this year in 3D that will suck: “Kenny Chesney: Summer in 3D” “Cats & Dogs: the Revenge of Kitty Galore” “Friday the 13th Part 2 in 3D” “Piranha 3-D” “Jackass 3D” “Saw VII” and “Yogi Bear.”

This is a trendy medium that studios are leaning on to bring in some extra bucks during a tough economy, and we can’t wait for the trend to die.

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21 responses to “Top 5 reasons 3D sucks

  1. I personally like 3-D for the right films and I don’t have a problem paying the extra juice to see a decent film in 3-D (or IMAX 3-D). Real-D, the most common 3-D in use today is the most cost-effective 3-D format but it still does cost more money to equip DLP projectors with and it does cost more money to maintain than a standard DLP projector so I get the price increase (but maybe not as much as they’re hitting us up for).

    However, you’re absolutely correct about ‘Avatar’ being one of the few films worth seeing in 3-D but it also did the industry a disservice by setting the precedent that studios can make mediocre and generic films with recycled plotlines (see: ‘Dances with Wolves’) and not only get record breaking box office numbers, but get rave reviews when if the film wasn’t as “ground-breaking” special effects-wise, would be barely worth consideration for purchasing the ticket to see it nevertheless receiving an Oscar nomination for best film. Seriously, if ‘Avatar’ wasn’t in 3-D would you have paid to see it? I wouldn’t have and since the Blu Ray isn’t in 3-D, I’m not buying it.

    This is typical for James Cameron, though, who in my opinion is one of the most overrated directors in Hollywood (you should do a Top 5 on most overrated directors). He consistently makes mediocre films with late-1970’s porn-film level dialogue and simplistic, redundant plot-lines yet compensates for those inadequacies with high-end visuals and somehow convinces audiences and critics alike that he’s some genius visionary and all of his work is just brilliant (see: ‘Terminator 2: Judgment Day” and “Titanic”).

    His work is generally average to above average at best and now unfortunately, the success of ‘Avatar’ is going to spawn a whole slew of rotten movies who’s only redeeming value is the fact that they will be in 3-D and therefore guarantee the studios more scratch at the box office (Seriously, Kenny Eff-ing Chesney, Cat’s and Eff-ing Dogs and Yogi Eff-ing Bear?). It’s disgusting. I have no problem with popcorn flicks but not every piece of crap is a popcorn flick worthy of 3-D treatment. Hollywood needs to focus more on quality films and less on gimmicks.

  2. Great response, Shawn. I totally didn’t mind paying more for Avatar. It was worth it.

    But Titans is not worth $5 added to my ticket because the 3D is crap. The price increase isn’t justified.

    I think the general public is going to get really fed up quickly with the gimmick and just not go to them, then Hollywood will catch on. The fad will be dead by 2011.

  3. Thanks, Matt and as mixed as my feelings about ‘Avatar’ as a film in general are it was the most unique (read: flippin’ awesome) film experience I have ever had in a theater. However, I agree with you about 3-D in general. It’s wearing out its welcome quickly.

  4. I’ll say it worked for Avatar but I don’t see any real reason to see any other 3-D movies anytime soon. For starters the theatre near me that I go to most often doesn’t have 3-D projectors, so it takes extra effort for me. Plus the expense, the annoyance of glasses-upon-glasses, etc. The only upcoming film I intend to see in 3-D is Tron: Legacy and that’s at least in part because I think the medium works best with anything animated.

    • I’m kinda looking forward to the new Tron. I’ve tried to temper expectations. Sometimes, like the latest Star Trek, I’m pleasantly surprised. I think have Jeff Bridges on board gives it some serious credibility. I’ll probably check that out in 3D.

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  10. 3-D is Soooo bad!!

    Thanks for this post. I thought I was alone!!

    I am only sore as I cannot actually see it. My eyes work independently of eachother so I am basically blind in my right eye. Avatar just made me cry. Not because I was moved by it. Just beacause I was determined not to be the only one in the theater not to be in awe of the film. I spent 3 hours going slightly cross eyed trying to get some sort of convergence going.

    Anyway add the fact 3-D doesnt work. Check this post on my blog for the FACT (add it to the list

    http://www.frontroomcinema.com/3d-work-fact/

    Custard

  11. Great post! I’ll add you to our blogroll!

    • Custard, I don’t know if you’re aware of this but there is a segment of the population simply can’t see 3-D media. There’s nothing with their vision but they just don’t have whatever is needed in their noggin.

      Regardless, my problem is that I just can’t really see it any more. My eyes now adjust very quickly and my brain isn’t tricked any more. When I did my review of Shrek Forever After, I noted that it’s so bad for me now that my eyes adjust during the trailers.

      The problem that I see is that the electronics industry is forcing 3D down our collective throats and it’s jacking up the price of good quality TV’s. I really want a high-end Samsung LED TV but I don’t want to pay the premium for the 3D feature but it seems as if I don’t have much of a choice.

      You’ve got a good blog, Custard. I’m going to add you to the TV-Tastic blogroll as well.

  12. Ever been to a 4D movie? This is where actually things physically come out at you. I went to one in Disney World like 18 years ago ( it was Michael Jackson Moonwalker) and most recently last year at the Baltimore Aquarium. The latter was pretty cool.

    • I’ve been to them several times at Disneyland and at the Star Trek: The Experience attraction when it was here in Las Vegas. They’re fun but I think if it’s overused, it loses its novelty effect just as 3D already has begun to.

  13. Oh and one more thing: get contacts four eyes!

  14. I’m thinking there was a paradigm shift in who pays to see movies, circa 2002ish. The high school crowd will flock to see any tripe whipped up on the screen for date night. Maybe we all have a responsibility to reach out the community and persuade the young folk to reassess the situation. Put on your pilgrim hat and carry the good book, Leonard Maltin’s movie guide. If that doesn’t work, I got nothing against choking a few them out with a plastic bag over there head, as a show of authority.

    • Again, though, and I made this point in Matt’s post where he apologizes for my review of The A-Team, without craptastic blockbusters, the good films would never get produced. The crap subsidizes the art. So basically, if we want to see good films we need to celebrate people willing to pay to see the crap.

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