Social Question

Snarp's avatar

Are 3D movies really worth it, or is this just a passing fad?

Asked by Snarp (11181 points ) March 24th, 2010

I don’t get it, there’s a big fight now for 3D screens in theaters among the big movie studios, all in the wake of Avatar. But wouldn’t Avatar have done just as well and been just as big a deal if it weren’t in 3D? Now everything is coming out in 3D, but is it really improving the movie experience? Now maybe I’m just jaded because I witnessed JAWS 3D and Michael Jackson’s Captain EO at EPCOT Center, but I really have no interest in a 3D movie. Maybe its also the fact that they give me migraines, even the online demos I’ve seen of the newer 3D weren’t that exciting and gave me a headache. Am I the last curmudgeon who thinks this is all stupid? Will I one day face a choice between a diminished movie going experience and a migraine? Or will this all fade away like it did last time?

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60 Answers

ucme's avatar

Are they worth it? Yes.A passing fad?No.They’re here to stay, which I think is a good thing.

syz's avatar

I have become a convert. Back in the bad old days of red and blue lenses with spear points (and other noxious items) coming out of the screen at you, I hated, hated it. Now that I’ve seen Avatar and Alice at the Imax, I’ll happily pay the extra money. Definitely worth it.

talljasperman's avatar

creative minds sometimes take holidays…I don’t like 3D either… I like my 33 year old Citizen TV. which is older than I am by 1 year.

john65pennington's avatar

How does Avatar compare with the 3D movies of the fifties? anyone here old enough to remember them?

slick44's avatar

3d movies are great. its like being there.I want to see clash of the titans, thats gona be good

Disaster_Porn's avatar

I think it is a fad straight up, a great movie is a great movie.

Not enough people care in my opinion about if it is 3D or not.

Snarp's avatar

@ucme Do you foresee a point at which it will cease to be just an effect, that you’ll have to see it in 3D to really get the movie, or will there always be the option to watch it in 2D?

Snarp's avatar

@syz I’ve heard some movie buffs and critics who say that the 3D in Avatar was a seamless part of the movie, that it fit in perfectly and was really thought out along with the rest of the production elements of the film, but that in Alice it was sort of an afterthought, something done to keep up with the trends but not really well integrated into the story telling. You liked both, do you see a difference between the two?

El_Cadejo's avatar

It depends how its done. If its like avatar to give depth thats cool, but im really not a fan of stuff jumping out of the screen at me, im not five.

My other big problem with 3d is the glasses while not red/blue are still tinted so it really dulls out a lot of the otherwise vivid colors.

Cruiser's avatar

3d movies are awesome! Especially now with the technology that is coming out they are better than ever! I can’t wait for them to come out! 3D is an aboslute rush!

Thammuz's avatar

I see it as a soon to be dead fad, unless they do something about it. As soon as people realize how much these movies lose from not being in 3D when you buy them and bring them home, there’s either going to be a massive death of this particular fad or a massive run to either create holographic screens or, more likely, selling the 3D glasses and putting 3D and non 3D versions of the movie in the box.

Hopefully this will lead to actual 3D porn. I would like that.

Also i agree with what @uberbatman said.

syz's avatar

@Snarp I did. In Alice, the 3D added to the overall attractiveness of the movie, but at the time, I had the thought that I’ve been happy to see it in 2D. In Avatar, the 3D allowed for total immersion in that imaginary world, made it completely believable. I don’t think I would have liked the movie nearly as much without that stunning visual depth.

wundayatta's avatar

The last two movies I saw were in 3D. I didn’t mind. The glasses weren’t a hassle, and I did forget I was wearing them after a while.

I haven’t seen a 2D movie since to compare, so I don’t know if I’ve been spoiled. I’m pretty sure it’s here to stay. Eventually there will be 3D for which glasses aren’t necessary.

Snarp's avatar

@Thammuz 3D porn? No thanks, there are some things I don’t want to see flying at me.

Disaster_Porn's avatar

@Snarp hahaha good point!

ragingloli's avatar

Wasting the vast majority of the budget on CGI will almost invariably mean that the rest of the movie will suffer. Things like the story, the characters, the actors.
As was the case with ‘Avatar’. Great visuals. But the rest was complete poppycock.
I hope it dies soon.

syz's avatar

I think 3D is here to stay

Vunessuh's avatar

To be honest, I hope it’s a passing fad, but it probably won’t be.
I can’t stand to sit there and let shit pop out at me, even if it happens only several times throughout the film. It makes me anxious. I’ve always had a hard time watching 3D movies.
I’m in 100% agreeance with @ragingloli.
Stole the words right out my mouth, yo.

aprilsimnel's avatar

I think they’re in for good. The film industry wants something spectacular to compete with HDTV.

MacBean's avatar

@Vunessuh Makes me anxious, too. I hate it. :(

Trillian's avatar

I remember the first time I saw an IMAX 3D movie. I was a lot younger and can still remember the wonder of feeling the sensation of motion while I was sitting still! The movie was educational, but part of the time it was mounted on a gimbal on a plane that flew into the Grand Canyon.
I don’t need to see every movie in 3_D but I enjoy it. I don’t think it’s going to go away anytime soon and I hope the standards remain high. I read the comment about Avatar being well done vs Alice being an attempt to just use the effects with no real integration. I’m going to see Alice this weekend, so I’ll pay special attention.

Dr_Dredd's avatar

The best movie I’ve seen in 3D was “Up!” The 3D was very understated, but it added so much texture. When the characters were flying, you could almost reach out and touch the treetops. Facial features were much more distinct than usual, and the level of detail was incredible. When I saw the movie again in 2D, I really noticed the difference.

Idknown's avatar

There are premiums to be had. 3d gets the geeks out of their pirating ways and into paying the premium to watch Clash of the Titans.

I’d so watch Matrix in 3d…

Besides the point – you can still vote with your dollars. And I think 3d’s got a ton of votes…

However – the price of a movie has gone up SIGNIFICANTLY. I’m now paying 30 dollars a movie date (in NYC) and really… 2 movies will get me some cheap seats to a Broadway Play. IMAX (real IMAX, not that fake one) tix are 20 bucks a piece, making a date $40.

Broadway Play vs 2 Movies… hmmm…. It’s getting easier to go for the more expensive real life play these days.

I hope the price goes down as more people adopt the tech. Right now, the premium is warranted. It’s new after all.

kevbo's avatar

No and no, IMHO.

Sophief's avatar

Hopefully a passing fad.

Idknown's avatar

@Dibley I don’t understand the anti-3d sentiment. In my opinion, the movies have stopped using cheap “in your face” tricks at playing on the 3d tech.

It only now adds to the experience. I understand if one does not feel enthusiastic for it, however, I am not understanding why one would hope it would pass.

Does 3d detract from your experience of the movie?

Sophief's avatar

@Idknown Personally I would just rather watch a normal film, that’s all.

jaketheripper's avatar

I sure hope thedy are. They give me a headache and that seems too be what everone else I know sais as well ad imo it adds nothing to the film

Snarp's avatar

@Idknown One reason to hope it passes is that with the current shortage of 3D screens some studios are telling theaters that if they don’t give them a 3D screen they won’t get to show the movie at all. That means that some people may not get to see the movie at all when the 3D probably didn’t add that much anyway.

The other is the notion that one day you might not have the option of watching in 2D. Eventually I’m going to have to try one of these new crop of 3D movies, and I would have liked to have seen Avatar, but it’s probably going to be a year before I see a movie in a theater again. I’ll need to know if I can watch one without getting a migraine and if I think it really adds to or detracts from the story telling, but if they continue to give me migraines, and one day I just can’t get the movie without the 3D, that will suck.

hearkat's avatar

IMAX makes a difference – even with 2-D films (such as recent action films: Star Trek, Iron Man, Batman, etc.); and with the IMAX 3-D, I really feel drawn in to the movie.

I usually choose to pay theater prices and deal with the hassle only for those pictures that the visual experience is an important part of the film. I suspect that many other people opt to skip the theater for conventional releases and wait for rentals or even bootlegs to watch at home. So 3-D gives people like me incentive to get to the theater.

As for those of you who have neurological reactions to such special effects, I don’t know if the studios are motivated to continue to appeal to that group by releasing 2-D options… a certain degree of lobbying the studios may be needed to make your voices heard.

Idknown's avatar

@Snarp I see your point. Fortunately, I have never experienced any sort of headaches from watching a 3d film. The only headache came when I tried to watch it without the glasses on (don’t do it).

Currently – I think there is a time and a place for this technology. Maybe it is the current premium, but I would not watch a Romantic Comedy with 3d if I had the 2d counterpart. It’s a waste. But with action movies, and CG movies – I would spring for the 3d effect.

The new tech does not detract from the experience.

As for studios not releasing on non-3d theaters: I don’t think you have to worry. Most of the theaters are run by corporations and Cinemark, AMC, Regal are big on updating all their screens for the new income 3d is supposed to bring in. Now I’m from NYC – so my knowledge can be a crapshoot if you’re in middle of nowhere Minnesota (no offense – and I do have buddies there!). But from what I understand – it won’t be long till at least one 3d theater is near you.

deni's avatar

Some movies I think are sort of meant to be in 3D. Avatar, hell yeah. That movie was fuckin awesome especially because it was totally in your face and you felt like you were on Pandora with them. On the other hand I feel like now, every movie coming out is in 3D even if it isn’t a prime movie to be in 3D. Sorry, but I wasn’t impressed with Alice in Wonderland. Compared to Avatar, it wasn’t all that 3D. It wasn’t “in your face” like Avatar and at some points I almost forgot it was even a 3D movie. Plus they’re expensive!

Snarp's avatar

So I suppose I’m going to be totally missing out on the Avatar experience when I finally see it at the cheapo theater in 2D or on DVD?

Idknown's avatar

@Snarp Actually – yes…

Sorry to say but Avatar was really THAT good in 3d. After the movie – I felt like the Navi were real and although the story itself sucked – the amount of immersion… was breathtaking.

You don’t have to miss out on ALL of it. My gf watched in 2d – she was okay with the movie. Plus you can always get a 3d set up :). Cost you 3k though – not sure this ONE movie is worth it – but hey! Maybe you’ll be a convert to 3d and spring for it. You never know.

OperativeQ's avatar

I miss when movies were about the actual story.

Idknown's avatar

@OperativeQ They still are. As another poster on another thread said – if the moves is crap – 3d won’t save it.

It still won’t! Avatar was GREAT for the experience. The story was still subpar. There are only so many times audiences can be fooled by 3d tech to go see the movie before they just pass.

This time will pass where ppl see the movie cause its in 3d. Your standards will be intact in the long run.

Snarp's avatar

Avatar even got the right Oscars, not Best Picture, which is a good sign for movies with stories.

mattbrowne's avatar

Wait till the movie gets fed into your neurons directly. Talk about real 3D experience.

Idknown's avatar

@mattbrowne I wait for the day… hope I’m not dead.

Snarp's avatar

@mattbrowne Will that be before or after I get a data storage device embedded in by skull?

OperativeQ's avatar

@Snarp You already have one.

Snarp's avatar

@OperativeQ that I can use to replace USB flash drives.

zephyr826's avatar

I’m not sure. I didn’t see Avatar (which seems to be the movie that everyone “had” to see in 3D), but we did see Up, Monsters vs. Aliens (chagrin) and Alice in 3D. Te closest IMAX is 100 miles away, so that’s not really an option for us. I find the technology somewhat distracting. Both my husband and I have to wear our real glasses with the 3D glasses over them, and if they slip even an little, everything rushes suddenly out of focus. I’m waiting with bated breath until I can enjoy without having to sacrifice my vision or my comfort. Until then, 2D is just fine.

Idknown's avatar

@zephyr826 I’m pretty sure they are coming out with glasses – prescription :P.

It seems to me as more and more home-owners buy 3d tv sets – we might be using the very same glasses in the theaters.

mattbrowne's avatar

@Snarp – After, but keep in mind, resistance is futile ;-)

Dr_Dredd's avatar

@zephyr826 I kinda liked Monsters vs. Aliens. It was cheesy, but, then again, it was SUPPOSED to be cheesy. :)

CMaz's avatar

Movies No.

3D TV Yes, sort of…

casheroo's avatar

My husband and I have been seeing Nightmare Before Christmas in 3d since we started dating, as a tradition.
I will admit, it takes my eyes a lot of getting used to the graphics, but I do like it. I don’t understand why they’re doing so many in 3d, I find it annoying. But its rare we get a chance to go to the movies now.

Snarp's avatar

@casheroo Nightmare Before Christmas in 3D? Was it originally made in 3D?

zephyr826's avatar

@Dr_Dredd Actualy I did too, but I felt somewhat sheepish for enjoying it.

Snarp's avatar

I liked Monsters vs. Aliens too, even though it had some major weaknesses, it was fun and funny. Did not see it in 3D.

ucme's avatar

@Snarp Oh I think there’ll always be the standard conventional format & long may it continue.It’s just given the option to watch in 3D then yeah that would be my & certainly my children’s preference.

casheroo's avatar

@Snarp not originally, it comes to the big theaters in my area ever xmas.

filmfann's avatar

It will probably be around for action movies, and childrens films, but most movies are about story, not effects.

Draconess25's avatar

3D hurts my eyes, gives me a headache, & makes me jittery. I hate it. I hope it’s a passing fad. Then again, I thought those damned HDTVs were, too. I hate my luck.

Thammuz's avatar

@Draconess25 It’s probaly not a passing fad. Nvidia has already created 3D graphics cards for PCs and Batman arkham asylum’s game of the year edition comes with 3D glasses. think they’re pretty invested in this, now that they have the resources to finally make it right.

Personally i’m waiting for hologram technology.

xStarlightx's avatar

I don’t see what the big deal about having anything 3D is. I understand High Deff stuff but not so much having those stupid glasses.

I think its just a fad.

Thammuz's avatar

@xStarlightx With movies i completely agree. With videogames, though, it makes a lot of sense: 3D helps the immersion, plus you’ll get a much better idea of where the targets are in relation to you thanks to depth perception.

ragingloli's avatar

Well, I think computer games are a whole other issue. You are actively participating in the game, whereas in a movie you just sit there and watch. Shooting a movie in 3D is also much more costly than making a stereoscopic game, because rendering a frame in a movie takes hours, whereas in a game it is rendered in real time. For a game that means you just have to render two frames from two different POVs at the cost of only a fraction of a second, in a movie it costs you hours for the frame alone and then there is post production. Time and money lost on something will have to be saved on something else. Like the plot, the characters, the writing in general. That is why Avatar was so bad in terms of these things.

john65pennington's avatar

3D first came out in the 50s. this is nothing new. i believe the very first 3D movie was War of the Worlds. the 3D glasses we wore were red on one side and i believe green on the other. for that time period, this 3D movie was not that bad. i watched it about 3 times. i was only a kid and was scared to death.

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