Someone In Hollywood Finally Gets That 3D Movies Are Rubbish

3D movies are the sort of thing you love, hate or, on the extreme end of the scale, want to crush out of existence by flinging them into the super-massive black hole at the centre of our galaxy. Although The Dark Knight Rises director Christopher Nolan doesn't harbour universe-sized levels of angst about the format, he's hardly entranced by its wiles.

In an interview with the Director's Guild of America, Nolan explains why 3D has never been a big thing for him:

...I find stereoscopic imaging too small scale and intimate in its effect ... The thing with stereoscopic imaging is it gives each audience member an individual perspective. It's well suited to video games and other immersive technologies, but if you’re looking for an audience experience, stereoscopic is hard to embrace.

I prefer the big canvas, looking up at an enormous screen and at an image that feels larger than life. When you treat that stereoscopically, and we've tried a lot of tests, you shrink the size so the image becomes a much smaller window in front of you. So the effect of it, and the relationship of the image to the audience, has to be very carefully considered. And I feel that in the initial wave to embrace it, that wasn't considered in the slightest.

Nolan, of course, doesn't rule out jumping on the 3D bandwagon at a later stage, but it's nice to hear someone in the business speaking intelligently of its downsides, rather than fluffing egos or dishing up nice-speak.

Image: Rodrigo Denúbila.

[DGA, via Blastr]


Comments

    When it works, it works well...and then we have 99.9% of all the other 3D movies.

      Best 3D summation EVER!!!!!

    I have no issue with a 3D movie that is filmed in that format from the start with the intent to make the show jump out at you. It's the conversion of regular films to 3D that pisses me off. For the most part it adds a pointless innovation that was never meant to be there in the first place. Even worse doing so lowers the bar for making movies in 3D, specially when it is used as a gimmick.

      +1. And the majority of the major releases are done this way... I think that's a large part of the objection to the proliferation of 3D - that it's become a gimmick that jacks up ticket prices without adding anything substantial to the storytelling.

    3D was lame 30 years ago when they has the red/blue filters as pictured in the article.
    Nothing has changed. Its still lame.
    Such a waste of time, money and effort.
    Bring on 4K TVs. That's where TV manufacturers and TV networks should be devoting their effort.

      we only just got to 1080 in the whole scheme of things, slow down.

    3D has been done well twice from the movies ive scene.
    1. Avatar
    2. Tron
    Both movies were subtle about how they used 3D and they made it give the film more depth. The landscape actually had a vastness to it that in the 2D versions just isnt there.
    If you film it in 3D and do it properly it looks good if you use computers to do it post production it looks shit.
    just compare Predator to Predators in terms of the heat vision. it the original they used a normal camera and a infrared camera for every single shot and mixed the vision together to get predator vision looked awesome. predators didnt they just did it in post production. (Slight tangent but still relevant)

      Not really. How do you think they did all the CG in Avatar? i.e. The "vastness" of the landscape - they didn't actually search the universe for a location with islands floating in the sky, the landscape was all created by computers in post production.

      i recently watched tron legacy in 3d and it definitely enhanced the experience. i enjoyed it a lot more over the 2d version.

    3D has been done well twice from the movies ive scene.
    1. Avatar
    2. Tron
    Both movies were subtle about how they used 3D and they made it give the film more depth. The landscape actually had a vastness to it that in the 2D versions just isnt there.
    If you film it in 3D and do it properly it looks good if you use computers to do it post production it looks shit.
    just compare Predator to Predators in terms of the heat vision. it the original they used a normal camera and a infrared camera for every single shot and mixed the vision together to get predator vision looked awesome. predators didnt they just did it in post production. (Slight tangent but still relevant)

    3D Documentaries and sports rock also. Not an entirely dead medium although Hollywood are dragging their heels with substance.

    It's a commonly held falsehood that movies 40 years ago could only do 3D with red and blue glasses. Actually, polarisation 3D has been around for ages - Hitchcock's Dial M For Murder was in full colour 3D

      Red/blue glasses also work with full-colour images. It is the easiest, cheapest way to actually do the work on a computer monitor and most high-end 3D and compositing applications allow you to do it in the viewport these days. I have my own pair of wrap-around red/blue glasses for working on stereoscopic stuff.

    just like CGI, 3D is no replacement for a good script and good acting. As long as the producers/director knows this i am happy to watch their movie, otherwise not interested.

    "3D is the future get used to it" Oh yea, is that why movie theaters have said they are not getting the crows for 3d movies and their going to UP the price of the 2D Movies , I see a big Future here!

    The movies might be of debatable worth, but when the technology starts being used in reality overlay displays (i see Valve are in on the action now), the need for believable simulated depth should become pretty obvious pretty quickly.

    I'd like to point out that Nolan is also a huge fan of Imax and if you ever have a chance to go to an Imax Cinema to watch the Dark Knight, do it.

    Seen a couple of movies in Imax (that were made specifically for that format) and the immersion is far better than what you'd get out of 3D. That and the fact that 3D still gives me massive migraines that last for about a week.

    The only real problem with current 3D movies is the requirement to wear glasses.
    Many people have psychological issues with wearing glasses, especially those who have headaches after seeing a 3D movie. This comment will, of course, draw out reactions from those people. Unfortunately for them it has been proven to be true.

    As with all movies content is the key to success. 3D is just another means of possibly improving that content. Any technique available to producers and directors can also degrade a movie.

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