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Has 3D Film-Making Had Its Day? 436

Posted by Soulskill
from the i-vote-yes dept.
dryriver sends this hopeful note from the BBC: "'It's three years since audiences around the world swarmed into cinemas to see James Cameron's Avatar. It rapidly became the biggest grossing film of all time, in part because of its ground-breaking digital 3D technology. But, in retrospect, Avatar now seems the high-point of 3D movie-making, with little since 2009 to challenge its achievement. Three years on, has the appeal of 3D gone flat? Nic Knowland has been a respected director of photography in Britain for 30 years. He's seen cinema trends and fads come and go, but never one for which he's had so little enthusiasm as 3D. 'From the cinematographer's perspective it may offer production value and scale to certain kinds of film. But for many movies it offers only distraction and some fairly uncomfortable viewing experiences for the audience. I haven't yet encountered a director of photography who's genuinely enthusiastic about it.'"
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Has 3D Film-Making Had Its Day?

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  • It's not true 3D (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @02:51AM (#42392861)

    It's not popular because it's false advertising. Holograms or bust.

    • Re:It's not true 3D (Score:5, Informative)

      by Sussurros (2457406) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @04:42AM (#42393237)
      Now that's the grain of truth at the heart of every comment about 3D. If it's not a hologram it's not good enough. Since the 1950s there has been 3D after 3D after 3D but all anyone wants is the hologram of Princess Leia from the movie.
      • by mcgrew (92797) * on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @09:12AM (#42394203) Homepage Journal

        Since the 1950s there has been 3D after 3D after 3D but all anyone wants is the hologram of Princess Leia from the movie.

        There are lots of problems with stereoscopic "3D". Your eyes (actually your brain)determine distance both by rangefinding and focus. When the two don't match (and they seldom will in a stereoscopic movie), many people get headaches.

        Then there's the stupid glasses you have to wear.

        Then there's the fact that 3D isn't really necessary.

        But if you like 3D, never fear, it'll be back. It always is. As soon as a new crop of kids come around who think "3D" is new it will ressurect, just as it's done for over sixty years now.

        • Re:It's not true 3D (Score:5, Interesting)

          by Seedy2 (126078) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @11:10AM (#42395049)

          Since the 1950s there has been 3D after 3D after 3D but all anyone wants is the hologram of Princess Leia from the movie.

          There are lots of problems with stereoscopic "3D". Your eyes (actually your brain)determine distance both by rangefinding and focus. When the two don't match (and they seldom will in a stereoscopic movie), many people get headaches.

          Then there's the stupid glasses you have to wear.

          Then there's the fact that 3D isn't really necessary.

          But if you like 3D, never fear, it'll be back. It always is. As soon as a new crop of kids come around who think "3D" is new it will ressurect, just as it's done for over sixty years now.

          I think you hit it with focus part. I always thought the reason I liked the 3D in Avatar was that it was environmental, it wasn't the focus of your attention as much as just there. They might have better luck with it if they kept the 3D to the edges instead of trying to jump your primary focus out of the screen, or at least reduce my headaches. I know I am altering the literal sense of the word focus from your intent, but I still think it applies.

        • by Cinder6 (894572)

          This author may not know any photographers who are enthusiastic about 3D, but I don't know any people who care about it. I teach kids, and even they seem not to care, and many are hostile toward it (due to headaches). Beyond their apathy, it's apparently not even good for young kids to watch. Who's it marketed to, then?

        • by s.petry (762400) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @02:48PM (#42397245)

          Government studies on stereoscopic viewing shows that viewing artificially created 3D can lead to a loss of depth perception. I built 2 different 3D CAVE/powerwall systems at the DOD. Engineers were limited to 5 hours per week which was considered the safe exposure rate. Viewing generated 3D can be used in some cases to treat strabismus, but normal eyes it's known to cause strabismus (more easily termed, permanent lazy eye).

          Of course Hollywood would never tell you about such dangers since it would hurt their bottom line. Here [avsforum.com] is a link of note, which is important to note " 1 + 2 = if you use stereo 3D routinely and intensively, you will develop strabismus, period. Government studies showed that damage is not always from "routine" and "intensive" viewing. 8 hours a week had a very high rate of eye damage which is why we limited Engineers to 5 hours.

    • by Taco Cowboy (5327) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @05:29AM (#42393343) Journal

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Technicolor [wikipedia.org]

      When "Technicolor" was first announced to the world it was BIG NEWS.

      Folks flocked to watch movies shot in "Technicolor" just because they were not black and white.

      Even lousy movies, movies that are worthless/meaningless, raked in truckloads of cash, just because they were in color.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Films_shot_in_Technicolor [wikipedia.org]

      Then, the fancy died down.

      This 3D thing is of course no different.

      • by mwvdlee (775178) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @06:53AM (#42393583) Homepage

        Difference is that color actually added to the ability to tell a story, using color to evoke emotion or focus the viewer's attention.
        I have yet to see any 3D scene where the 3D is used as a storytelling device rather than just a fancy special effect.

        • Difference is that color actually added to the ability to tell a story, using color to evoke emotion or focus the viewer's attention.

          There is no reason why 3D cannot do the same thing if used properly. 3D can create a sense of space or vastness or depth. Flight is inherently a 3D experience which is hard to properly capture in 2D. Just because movie makers have done a generally poor job of using the technology does not have anything to do with the potential uses of 3D if done well.

          I have yet to see any 3D scene where the 3D is used as a storytelling device rather than just a fancy special effect.

          There's nothing wrong with fancy special effects (color is one) though I understand what you are saying. Bear in mind that movie directors mostly still don

        • by Woogiemonger (628172) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @12:55PM (#42396207)

          While it is true that 3D has been largely either "poke you in the eye" or "show it in 3D, even though the director refuses to acknowledge it", there are SOME examples to the contrary. The main one that stood out was Coraline, which I made a point of seeing recently. The director, in an interview, confirmed how I took his approach to be:

          http://www.studiodaily.com/2009/02/director-henry-selick-on-coraline/

          "There was a learning process – mainly not to overuse it. We ultimately used it to help draw the audience into the Other world as Coraline is being drawn into the Other world. The sets in the Other world are actually deeper. In her real world, it’s crushed space with steeply raked floors. For example, the kitchen in her real world is one foot deep. The kitchen in the Other world is four feet deep. I wanted to use 3D in a more subtle way to show what Coraline is going through, that there’s a sense of spaciousness in that Other world. We have a few shots where things poke you in the eye, but when the Other world goes wrong, we crank up the 3D almost to an uncomfortable level to enhance the storytelling."

          Great usage of 3D in my book. It's too bad not many good directors are taking 3D seriously.

      • You can add color without much of a loss. It is closer to the move to High-definition TV.
        The current 3D you don't get much out of it, and they are tradeoffs to get it.
        Most movies are done on smaller sets, so you will need to digitally alter movie to give the correct 3d effect, now when you digital alter something you can run into the Uncanny Valley where any slight imperfection could make the viewer feel ill.
        Next they are still required to wear glasses. Now if you already have glasses that adds more discom

      • by Shavano (2541114)

        No, it is different. Technicolor looks like real-world color. It makes the illusion of cinema much better than black and white. It doesn't cause eye strain and it doesn't require each viewer to use special eyewear just to see the movie.

        But I get your point. Peter Jackson just spent a buttload of money making The Hobbit in 3D. All wasted. He should have spent more hiring actors and makeup artists to create believable orcs, choreographers to make credible combat scenes and editors who knew the differenc

    • Re:It's not true 3D (Score:5, Informative)

      by hairyfeet (841228) <bassbeast1968 AT gmail DOT com> on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @08:11AM (#42393911) Journal

      You kinda had it then missed the mark. Its not popular because not only does it not look good it rarely enhances the story and instead what you get is "Dr Tongue's 3D House Of Pancakes". Man I wish Candy were alive, he'd have had a field day with this.

      But the dirty little secret that they are ignoring or downplaying, which is also why the 3D TVs aren't selling worth a shit, is a LARGE section of the population gets blinding headaches from the crap! I have 4 customers that have bought 3D TVs so far, how many actually use the 3D? NONE, none of them show 3D content on their 3D TV, why? Because at least one person in their family gets a blinding headache from watching 3D which ruins the entire point of having a home theater, the family gathering around and enjoying it together.

      In my little shop I get people from all walks of life and all ages and when Avatar and all the 3D hype started i start asking folks about what they thought of it and I found the headaches are a BIG problem, in fact I hadn't met anybody yet who didn't complain about it giving at least one person in their family a sick headache. In my own family while I can watch it okay, although I do feel kinda fatigued afterward, both of my parents and my oldest simply can't watch anything 3D, more than an hour and they are walking out the theater with a blinding skull thumper.

      So you have a product that 1.-Costs more, 2.-Rarely enhances the story, 3.-Often is only used for cheap effects, 4.-Gives a large portion of the population a negative experience when using it, and they wonder why its bombing? Maybe when they come up with holograms or at least 3D without glasses then i could see it maybe taking off, but this current tech sucks just as bad as the tech used back in the 50s, it just sucks in a different way. I know myself and several friends have gone out to see a movie and ended up changing our minds because we couldn't find a theater showing it in 2D and from the sounds of it more folks are doing the same, its not worth the bullshit.

  • No. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by fyngyrz (762201) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @02:52AM (#42392869) Homepage Journal

    Nor will it EVER have its day until there is a real 3D display system.

    Now, stereoscopic filmmaking may be over, but that's hardly 3D except in the eyes of the bewildered.

    I guarantee you, when a 3D production can be made, distributed and enjoyed, the day of 3D will begin, and it isn't likely to *ever* go back to 2D (or the pale imitation that is stereoscopy.)

    Also, happy solstice + 3. I wish you a suitably bacchanalian event, complete with frolicking, consensual partner of your choice.

    • Re:No. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @03:05AM (#42392941)

      Even if there were real 3D, how would you make use of this properly? Current story telling only works because you can limit and control what people see. How will a horror movie work if half the audience can already see the guy hiding behind the rock before he leaps out? (This is just one example of a ton of problems that would arise)

      I'm not sure that most people who want 3D know what they are actually asking for - personally I think 2D is perfect just leave it alone.

      • by Dyne09 (1305257)

        Even if there were real 3D, how would you make use of this properly? Current story telling only works because you can limit and control what people see. How will a horror movie work if half the audience can already see the guy hiding behind the rock before he leaps out? (This is just one example of a ton of problems that would arise)

        I'm not sure that most people who want 3D know what they are actually asking for - personally I think 2D is perfect just leave it alone.

        You can still have true 3D and mise en scene at the same time. True 3D film would still require a director's eye to progress the story, focus the attention of the audience, and deliver some degree us suspense and drama. One could have true 3D, and not at the same time have it basically be a Holodeck program where the viewer sees everything.

      • Re:No. (Score:4, Insightful)

        by rolfwind (528248) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @03:31AM (#42393041)

        Even if there were real 3D, how would you make use of this properly? Current story telling only works because you can limit and control what people see. How will a horror movie work if half the audience can already see the guy hiding behind the rock before he leaps out?

        I guess I was misinformed and all magicians only exist in 2 dimensions.

      • Even if there were real 3D, how would you make use of this properly?

        Ever seen a play?

        • Yes. And the storytelling was not so much better in the play that I would forego all 2D movies, hence.
          • Depends on the play. Most plays take place on the stage, remote from the audience. A few take place across the theater, including in the rows (mostly comedies, but also works well for horror). The former is not a substantial difference from a 2D movie; the latter is a HUGE difference, with huge potential for telling stories in different ways.

    • Re:No. (Score:5, Interesting)

      by zakkudo (2638939) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @03:11AM (#42392965)
      True 3D will also fail as long as we keep the current ADD-style scene changes. (I can barely stomache them now.) Cutting between people talking is a nightmare for 3D and will always be extremely disorienting. The current filming style in Hollywood is prohibitive to anything that isn't straight 2D and I don't see them changing it. That is just the way it is.
      • by AmiMoJo (196126) *

        It's because Hollywood maxed out on special effects in the late 90s. CGI got so good there really wasn't anywhere left to go, but then they stumbled on the wobbly camera and using editors with ADHD. Your brain fills in what your eyes can't keep up with and it looks good, until you buy the DVD and notice that this time it looks a bit ropey.

    • Re:No. (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Pieroxy (222434) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @03:17AM (#42392985) Homepage

      I don't care much for stereoscopic imaging, mostly because of the ever increasingly uncomfortable glasses.

      However, the 48fps increase I await with much enthusiasm. It is not revolutionary at all but 24fps one of the things that annoy me most about movies these days. As soon as the scene is moving, everything is blurred out and choppy.

      • by shaitand (626655)

        If the hobbit is any indication 48fps is the best thing to ever happen to stereoscopic 3D. 100% flicker and headache free. The image was at least as smooth and easy on the eyes as any 2D content I've seen.

    • Daleks don't frolick. :-p

    • Re:No. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by forkazoo (138186) <wrosecrans AT gmail DOT com> on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @03:57AM (#42393127) Homepage

      Now, stereoscopic filmmaking may be over, but that's hardly 3D except in the eyes of the bewildered.

      That's a very common opinion, but it's wrong. I've done everything from good old 2D 24 FPS through interactive live theater. Live theater is a close analog to what you are talking about, where you can move around and see shifts in perspective. The experience changes depending on what you do. It'll be an interesting tech demo when we get holoprojectors and holocameras. And, certainly there will be some people who use it to great effect.

      But, a key part of the reason that film is so much more popular of a medium than live theater is the fact that the director and cinematographer can ove the camera and make you look at exactly whatever they want you to see. It's an incredibly powerful storytelling tool to be able to show your audience a very specific image. If you look at the original "A Few Good Men" and the movie version, you will see that the writing had to change quite a lot. I think it's a particularly good example of how storytelling changes for the cinema. You didin't need as many expositional monologs in the movie version because the camera could just show you something. That "show" vs. "tell" distinction is fundamental to why just taking a play and shooting it doesn't make a good movie. And, that distinction is why taking away the Director's ability to show you very specific images doesn't improve storytelling, even if it is more 'natural' and more technologically sophisticated.

      Stereo cinematography isn't what it could be, but don't assume that it's just a technical problem. It's largely a business problem because doing a great 3D picture, where the cinematography isn't interesting in 2D simply isn't a good business plan. You need to be able to sell tickets in 2D theaters, and you need to be able to sell DVD's in order to make a profit. So, the 2D version has to have primacy, and that means that 3D cinematography takes a back seat. You won't see big studios really interested in 'artistic' stereo until stereo displays are ubiquitous enough that selling a 3D picture is a given.

    • by Twinbee (767046)
      If you're sitting in one place all the time, then you're not even taking advantage of your 'true 3D' stage. Moreover, everyone in the audience will see a different film to everyone else.

      No, the true future of 3D is what we have now, but tweaked and refined so that 3D objects don't often intrude beyond the front of the screen (there's a gimmick we can well do without). Combine that with a decent frame rate, and a more enveloping view (bigger screen horizontally AND vertically) and then we can talk.
  • it added nothing and enhanced everything -- a lot.

  • by GrumblyStuff (870046) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @02:57AM (#42392901)

    The use of such high visual fidelity should be for things where visuals trump all. Sports (god I hate sports) benefit because you're watching the action. Nature shows (various National Geographic things or the Planet Earth series) benefit because... it's fucking nature and the only sensory experience you can get from a TV is sight and sound. Action flicks or CGI wankfests (Transformers, blah), again, because you're watching the spectacles, not the shitpoor Bruckheimer dialogue & acting.

    But now what's the point of high FPS in a drama? Would Downton Abbey be that much better in 3D? Is a comedy going to be more hilarious in 1080p?

    • by shaitand (626655)

      Saying that high resolution, fps, and 3D don't belong in a drama is like saying a high quality sound system is only appropriate for rock and hip hop and what is the point of using one to play Mozart. The problem with 3D isn't that it is a gimmick it is that it's been marketed as one and it is a relatively poor gimmick. It isn't some stunt to deliver better graphics. Watching a movie in 2D vs 3D is like watching a play vs watching a movie. You are suspending belief which is fine and there is content worth su

      • What I mean with drama is that the kind of subtleties, the emotional responses, the dialogue, those things are not enhanced with greater FPS, resolutions, or stereoscopic "3D". It's a seriously flat plateau as far bang for buck when it comes to quality in genre. Yeah, you probably don't want to watch an old realmedia video with massive blocking artifacts and muffled sound but once you hit SD resolution and stereo sound, that's enough. Minor jump in enjoyability for DVD quality but then after that is just a

  • by Dyne09 (1305257) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @03:03AM (#42392933)
    As much as I hate to say it, the 3D format for film will probably be the future. Even if this current fad dies down, the next iteration of 3D technology will probably carry it forward into the future. It's essentially the next logical step in production, the same way colorization was when it first came out. This is not to say I LIKE the 3D element in films that have been produced recently - I have seen The Hobbit and the Life of Pi in the past two weeks, neither of which where really enhanced by 3D. In fact, when I saw the Avengers in 3D, I wanted to puke from the crappy usage of post rendering. However, if you look back at early usage of colorization, it was gimmicky, and often extremely unrealistic. It took many many years for it to develop into an actual viable tool. Before everyone starts whining about how awful 3D is, there are many techniques for proper 3D rendering that modern artists haven't mastered, or have actively chosen to ignore. As an example, using deep focus to prevent blurring of items in the frame helps the human eye in 3D movies, but it contradicts pretty much most of what modern film theory tells us so far, and as such it's how we've learned to both make and perceive film. It's going to take a great deal of re-working and re-imagining to make 3D an augmentation, and not just an attraction. And this isn't counting the technological constraints of 3D, which still haven't quite made it to critical mass yet. The point is, see The Hobbit in 2D. You'll be much happier.
    • by Announ (1960946)
      Sadly, The Hobbit in 2D is only available downconverted to standard 24 fps frame rate. While the 3D may not be there yet, the higher smoothness is a much-needed improvement.
    • What about the big effing elephant in the room: BRIGHTNESS? One of the things Cristopher Nolan doesn't like about 3D is that the polarized filters in the projector and glasses kills about 2/3 of the original brightness, and they didn't triple the luminance (or whatever) of the projectors to compensate. Everytime I see a 3D flick I feel like I'm going friggin' blind: some scenes in Avengers where apparently made for blind people (w/ dialog only), 'cause the only 5 things I could see where Capn' 'Merica, Thor
  • by TechyImmigrant (175943) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @03:06AM (#42392943) Journal

    The sooner it goes away the better.

    The primary deleterious effect of 3D in my local movie theaters is that the 2 or 3 popular movies at any time now occupy 4 or 6 screens, for the 3D and non 3D versions. This pushes out 2 or 3 other options, so there are fewer options available. This is not a good thing.

    • The sooner it goes away the better.

      Seconded. I *always* go see the 2D version of any movie I want to see.

      And even those suffer, because of the scenes that are so obviously a gimmick for the 3D version. Very distracting and annoying, even in 2D.

      Like so many other applications of technology, we need a better reason than "because we can".

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by fatphil (181876)
        > scenes that are so obviously a gimmick for the 3D version

        Why are you blaming better technology for what is in essence just bad film-making?

        I hated the sounds of early CDs, I was a vinyl lover, and it was only later when talking to a hardware engineer who'd worked in the digital audio field that it was revealed to me why I hated the sound - because they were deliberately engineered to sound as unlike vinyl as possible. And in part, that meant deliberately screwing up the frequency response. So it wasn't
    • by TubeSteak (669689)

      The sooner it goes away the better.

      3D isn't going away for two big reasons:

      1. Theaters have already invested in expensive new projectors and they're going to get their money's worth out of them, come hell or high water
      2a. Animations look good in 3D. Old animations can be cheaply/easily re-rendered in 3D and put back into theaters.
      2b. Because of 2a, even if everyone else forsakes 3D, kid-oriented animations will keep the pipeline full.

    • by tsa (15680)

      I have the impression that around 50% of the people like 3D and the rest doesn't. Because theaters have invested a lot in 3D this means it won't go away for a long time.

  • For one, it's uncomfortable. They eye is constantly seeking, working to maintain the picture, and still there are lots of spots where the depth feels completely out-of-place and breaks all visual immersion. Also, having to wear silly glasses on top of glasses doesn't make it any more fun. Secondly, directors still use it as a "LOOK AT THIS EFFECT!! FUCKING LOOK AT IT!" - gimmick, totally ignoring all logic and coherence and making every effort for that particular scene to pop out as much as possible -- swit

    • ... having to wear silly glasses on top of glasses *FOR THREE FRIGGING HOURS* doesn't make it any more fun.

      TFTFY. Happy Holidays and all that. :D

    • by tlambert (566799)

      This is what the original article claimed as well.

      If you have differences in depth of field for your eyesight, particularly if you've had your eyes lasered into monovision, then yes, I could see it being uncomfortable; however, that's easily solvable by not watching in a 3D theater or by using equal polarization in both eyes so you simply don't see the 3D effect at all, and get the same polar frame in both your eyes. And yes, such "2D glasses" do exist.

      You can also get 3D prescription lenses, which, if you

      • by Cyberax (705495)
        "You can also get 3D prescription lenses, which, if your eyesight is bad enough you need correction in a movie theater in the first place, you are likely already carrying around a second pair of corrective lenses, since polarized sunglasses will back out one or both eyse when using an LCD screen at work, so what's yet another pair."

        Polarized glasses work fine with Real3D system which uses frequency-based 3D.
  • by Zemran (3101)

    More to the point, why are people paying so much to buy 3D TVs? What a complete and utter waste of your hard earnt money...

    • Re:TVs (Score:5, Insightful)

      by nxtw (866177) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @03:31AM (#42393045)

      People aren't buying expensive TVs because they are 3D; they are buying high end TVs which mostly happen to have 3D.

      Now if these 3D TVs had real 120 Hz input (for two frames of 1080p60 in 3D using shutter glasses) it might be a useful feature to use without the glasses on. But so far I think they all only support two frames of 1080p30 at most - standard HDMI doesn't have enough bandwidth, and newer spec hardware and cables are required.

      With 48 fps movies, we may see more TVs using 240 Hz, but probably none with any high-bandwidth inputs, especially if 3D goes away.

    • by 91degrees (207121)
      3D in a TV isn't all that expensive. You just need a TV that can handle a high enough refresh rate, and some cheap electronics to sync with shutter glasses. The rest can be handled by software.

      Expensive 3D TVs are expensive because it tends to be a gimmick added to high end televisions.
  • by IdahoEv (195056) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @03:21AM (#42393001) Homepage

    There are major, but short-lived, bursts of stereoscopic 3D movies seem to come every 15-20 years or so, as another new generation is available to be briefly wowed by a technology that's not new and that doesn't really add anything to the moviegoing experience. People get over it and we move on.

    • by rolfwind (528248)

      Imo, it will probably be more likely to become a fixture in video games than in movies. Just the nature of the beast.

    • by Cyberax (705495)
      And the old generation just constantly bitches at these new-fangled 'computers', 'bookfaces' and all that oranges^H apples.

      In reality, a new equilibrium is found: 3D works great for animated films (they are computer-rendered anyway) and some high-profile pictures ("Cirque du Soleil", "The Hobbit", etc.). Most other films are better off in 2D.
      • And the old generation just constantly bitches at these new-fangled 'computers', 'bookfaces' and all that oranges^H apples.

        I can reveal to you that it has nothing to do with age.

  • by Spinalcold (955025) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @03:40AM (#42393081)
    I know they target the normal vision for these movies, but the fact is that a huge amount of people don't have normal vision and can't watch these 3d movies well. I have astigmatism, and most others I have talked to with a string astigmatism have a hard time with these movies. Personally, my eyes can't focus well, but I know others that get dizzy or headaches. It isn't main steam because they ignored a huge population base!
    • by fatphil (181876) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @07:40AM (#42393749) Homepage
      Both my g/f and I have astigmatism. She also has nystagmus. I also have pretty severe short-sightedness in one eye. For us, The Hobbit's 3D (at 48 fps) worked really well. No dizziness, no headaches, no nausea, and no vertigo except when looking down into a valley from above, which is what we'd hope to feel in that situation.

      So it worked perfectly for us, and we clearly have nothing like normal vision. Certainly astigmatism is nothing to do with your problems. And what's this "[your] eyes can't focus well" bollocks? They don't need to focus - the screen is the same distance away the whole freaking time! Which is the same for 2D and 3D movies. It really looks like you're just pulling random excuses out of your arse.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @03:42AM (#42393091)

    I have a 3d vision projector. Playing Skyrim in 3d is pretty badass. Video games have to store the render geometry somewhere, so it is available to use to create 2 views into a single render scene. No new tech needed, no hard to use filming techniques required, no massive infrastructure investment necessary.

    The same projector, when used in movies, generally sucks. Avatar is basically impossible to buy, and the other movies are mostly terrible. For movies, 3d seems best on documentaries (especially space) where it adds an extra tiny hint of wonder.

  • Extreme "Meh" (Score:5, Insightful)

    by evil_aaronm (671521) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @03:51AM (#42393115)
    I don't care whether it's 2D or 3D, or even wowza effin' holograms: it doesn't matter. What matters is the story. Shit, son, I can be thoroughly entertained by a book - imagination required. The vehicle of delivery means naught if the story doesn't compel. If the story is compelling by itself, I don't need the video embellishments. One could say that if you, as a film maker, have to resort to some form of 3D to draw an audience, that you have failed: you should not rely on the presentation to rescue your ass. Unfortunately, we'll have to learn this lesson over and over again.
  • by future assassin (639396) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @04:07AM (#42393147) Homepage

    can't be made better with 3D.

    Instead of remking shit like Red Dawn into a bigger pile of shit 20 year later give us some fucking good shows and fuck the 3D. No wonder so many people pirate. They'd rather pirate in the privacy of their own home then be seen in public watching crap.

  • Tired (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Pecisk (688001) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @04:16AM (#42393175)

    I'm tired of another one trying to prove that 3D is money grab scheme, or just pompous extra to pay more for ticket. Essentially, *any* technical improvement ends in that bin, so please stop speculate. It all depends how it's used.

    I have seen quite a number of 3D movies for these last years and as usual, it all depends on talent. "Prometheus" was just so well done in 3D - you can discuss about acting, script, but 3D was awesomely done here. Thing there and there, not overdone, but done at right time and place it made wonders.

    "Hobit" 3D with all 48 FPS was also beautiful. It took time to adapt, but when I "forgot" that it moves too fast, it was amazing.

    "Transfomers 3" in same time was kinda shitty, only few scenes like done specially for 3D looked good, but also not immersion, but "ohh nice 3D demo" wise (not that I'm against nice 3D demos, but that's not worth the ticket).

    What about 3D scientific movies (nature movies, ocean movies)? What about Cirque du Soleil new 3D movie, which looks so artistic that I can't hardly see money maker there? What about Life of Pi?

    Look, 3D is technology, essentially it's a tool - as 48 FPS, or Doubly Surround. It all matters how it's used. 3D won't make shallow movie enjoyable to me. But it sure can make movie I like more spectacular.

  • ...to force theaters to switch to digital projectors, and pay for it themselves. Digital distribution is orders of magnitude cheaper than 35mm film distribution, which is why the studios wanted the change. They could say to small independent theaters, "We're not sending you 35mm prints any more, so you better switch or you'll go out of business." But the MPAA needs the big chains like AMC and Regal as much as AMC and Regal need the MPAA. If AMC stops showing Universal's movies, AMC goes out of business, but so does Universal. There were originally negotiations about sharing the cost of the equipment rollout, but no agreement was ever reached. So the studios started making boatloads of 3D movies and hyping them to death so audiences would demand the change. Audiences are starting to catch on that it's just a gimmick, but it's done its job. Most theaters are digital now and the last few exceptions will be switching within the next year or so. And the studios didn't have to contribute a dime.
  • It's not good enough, yet. It being distracting is evidence of that. Make it better, and it'll join color, high definition, surround sound, and other technological advances in their it-doesnt-make-movies-better-but-it-doesnt-hurt status. As always, story telling and character development will and always matter most.

  • Perhaps if the theaters didn't try to rape our wallets for the 3D glasses (every time), then - to add insult to injury - ask us to "please recycle them". I can't imagine the things the theaters sell cost more than a nickle to make in volume. Perhaps if they let us buy a permanent pair and/or bring our own. Ya, I get that's how they try to recoup their expenses for the 3D projectors, etc, but that's their problem, not mine.

    Perhaps it's how the 3D isn't used to add anything of real value to the plot, mo

  • by FaxeTheCat (1394763) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @05:13AM (#42393303)
    Just saw "Rise of the Guardians" in 3D with the entire family. Visually fantastic, and without doubt the best 3D film I have seen. So the clear answer to the OP question is simply "No".
    It may just be that the filmmakers need to learn how to best use 3D, the same way they had to learn using color.
  • The problem is that the movie industry sees it as the new cash cow.

    * When you look at good movies like Avatar and Hugo you will notice that there is such a thing as doing 3D right. The problem is that this is not the case for most movies.

    * Most movies available are (bad) conversions of movies that where never produced with 3D in mind.

    * It is ridiculous expensive not only the movie tickets but you need to see the prices they are asking for one stupid 3D movie here in this country. 28 a 35 euro's...
  • Which film won all accolades last year?

    Hints: it is mostly silent, black and white and most definitively 2D.

    3D is the overall strategy of the big studios to keep milking the blockbuster, a cinematic product whose cost is spiraling out of control and will continue to make money only as long as the average public is shown new shiny gimmicks.

  • HR3D (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Janek Kozicki (722688) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @05:59AM (#42393423) Journal
    I was searching if anyone mentioned hr3d, to mod him up. But unfortunately not, so instead of modding i have to mention it myself.

    HR3D [mit.edu] (high rank 3d display, where rank stands for high rank matrix used in calculations) is the future of 3d displays. It uses the parallax effect, but to much higher extend, using dual or triple stacked LCD displays. Where each display is serving as a special parallax barrier. HR3D is calculation intensive currently, this is why it is not widely adopted. But the computations costs will decrease, and it will become popular. It is not only two viewing angles for two eyes. It can have 16, 25, 36 or even more viewing angles. And you could look from far above, from far below, from far left from far right. And even look behind something. Though generating content for hr3d requires having 16, 25, 36 or even more cameras (each recording from another perspective) instead of just two cameras recording for two eyes. So it is mostly suitable for digital content, or simply put an OpenGL driver to display OpenGL graphics in real 3D. If a movie director wanted to make a movie, with actors, his camera would look like an insect head, due to so many cameras required. Or maybe some special 3D-camera that records everything and recalculated whole scene in 3D.

    I am watching their progress, and can't wait when I'll be able to buy some hr3d display with OpenGL drivers for linux. Also if they went IPO I would buy their stock immediately.
  • by loufoque (1400831) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @07:26AM (#42393705)

    I live in French, where american movies are usually shown dubbed.
    While the dub is usually "quite good", the original version, as played by the original actors, is always better, so I prefer watching films in their original language.

    The problem is that now, with 3D, you either have the following choices: French in 3D, French in 2D, or English in 3D.
    I don't even know why, since 3D and subtitles hardly go well together.

    For this reason I'm forced to either watch sub-par 3D, or listen to sub-par voice-over. Or just download from the pirate bay.

  • by TheUglyAmerican (767829) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @09:06AM (#42394169)
    I went to my first 3D over the weekend, The Hobbit. Here's my take. First the technical aspects are challenging, e.g. holding your head properly aligned, objects near the screen edge get funky, fast moving objects can show color fringes, etc. that gave he headaches at times. More importantly though, I don't think the film industry has learned the art of 3D. There were too many gratuitous 3D effects (like objects flying toward you) that are more appropriate at Disney - they do nothing to enhance the presentation of the story. There were times though when the effect was quite nice and made the characters more real. I'll try 3D again but the film industry needs to figure out how to use the technology to enhance the presentation of the story, and not to be the story itself.
  • by srobert (4099) on Wednesday December 26, 2012 @11:09AM (#42395027)

    Without the 3d, is Avatar just a re-write of Dances with Wolves?
    It's OK as a gimmick once in awhile. If it adds to the story, it could be worth doing. But 99% of the movies I'm going to want to see are going to be 2d. They will rely on story telling to compel me to watch.

Stinginess with privileges is kindness in disguise. -- Guide to VAX/VMS Security, Sep. 1984

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