Romy Shiller

3D Does Not Work My Buzz

In Film on November 25, 2011 at 4:43 pm

The only thing worse than being blind is having sight but no vision.

 

 Helen Keller

 

I posted on Facebook that Titanic was being re-released in 3D and that 3D was overrated. “There has been much talk recently about a ‘3D revolution’. Millions flocked to cinemas to see 3D films such as Avatar and Alice in Wonderland.”

 

Several responses to my Facebook post included, “3D is ridiculous“The glasses don’t work well for those of us already wearing specs” and “the current obsession with 3D movies means that movie makers actually take 2D movies and artificially slice them into a series of displaced planes in 3D space so that they can sell them as 3D movies. Look at the movie “Avatar: The Last Airbender”… 2D movie modified a bit and masquerading as 3D. Either film it with a 3D camera and sell it as 3D or just call it what it is: a regular movie.”

 

An article called Is it Real 3D or Fake 3D? says, Many studios are “faking it” by converting 2D films into 3D post-production. Worse, the studios are not being upfront in their advertising, with some people feeling ripped-off after paying extra fees for the 3D Experience.” On Yahoo! Answers somebody said, “3D movies are horrible these days. I like my movies staying on the screen enticing me to see what happens next. Not get some headache on watching random things pop off the screen at me.”

 

According to a study of 400 filmgoers by L Mark Carrier, of California State University, 3D movies do not allow viewers to experience more intense emotional reactions, are no more immersive, and do not offer any advantage over their 2D counterparts in terms of enhancing the ability to recall a film’s details. Carrier’s study did, however, suggest that watching films in stereoscope increased threefold the risk of eyestrain, headache or trouble with vision.

 

I have wanted to write a piece about 3D for a very long time and now it seemed opportune. Many, many people do not like 3D but you would be hard-pressed to know it. Also, many viewers only see 2D – up to 12 percent. “According to British charity The Eyecare Trust, as many as 6 million Britons can’t properly process 3D images due to visual Impairment… See, as it turns out, you don’t have to be legally blind or Cyclops from X-Men to be part of the unlucky minority that’ll view future games, movies, and TV shows not in 3D, but as a blurred mess of reds, blues, and disappointment…” Films like Avatar, which deal with impairment, are not accessible to the impaired for a couple of weeks. This is so hypocritical to me I can’t even begin… “

 

“3D images can cause headaches and vision problems in a significant portion of the population.”

 

Half an hour after seeing the film Alice In Wonderland in 3D, Josh James blacked out on his way home and rolled his car. Could 3D have been to blame?

 

There are growing concerns about the side effects of the technology, with experts warning of altered vision, confusion, dizziness and even convulsions.

 

Josh himself needs no convincing that 3D was behind his accident.

 

Josh is an 18 year-old student. While watching the film, the 3D really bothered him. ‘I definitely think watching a 3D film played a major part, especially as I know other people who have had strange after-effects, too.’

 

 

 

Consumer electronic giants, such as Samsung, have issued several warnings relating to the consumption of 3D. For example last year, Samsung said that its 3D TV sets could trigger epileptic fits or cause ailments ranging from altered vision and dizziness to nausea, cramps, convulsions and involuntary movements such as eye or muscle twitching.

 

When I saw the last Harry Potter film [review] on DVD, it was obvious that being filmed in 3D produced a flawed visual aspect to the film now in 2D. “In what has to be one of the most candid and honest rants from a movie CEO in years, Universal chief Ron Meyer has revealed all about the rubbish films his company makes and how 3D can make some awful movies ‘palatable’…Meyer admits that a number of the movies Universal has made in recent years have been, er, below par – he cites Wolfman and Babe 2 – but believes that new-ish cinema gimmicks like 3D should be used with caution, even though they can improve bad films.” I guess ‘palatable’ is subjective. Anyhow, point taken – 3D makes bad films better.

 

I’m not sure (right!) but if I wanted my film to make money later as a rental, I’d make sure it was 2D. However, even 3D films on the big-screen have problems; “To put it bluntly, Mars Needs Moms has been a mega-flop. The film cost about $175m (£110m) to make and market – yet grossed less than $7m on its opening weekend in the US.”

 

Maybe filmmakers need an excuse to re-release their film on the big screen. For Cameron, 3D gives him a reason to re-release Titanic apparently. It seems kind of irresponsible to me:

 

 

 

As UC Berkeley’s Martin Banks said back last year to Tech Review, “In 3D…at a movie theater, or in another situation where the screen is at a great distance — objects that seem to recede behind the screen cause greater eyestrain. This holds true even for “glasses-free” 3D experiences, Banks tells Technology Review.

 

Frankly, 3D is a pain in the ass for many. “Many of us were like, 3-D movies are so cool, it’s gotta do something. It didn’t seem to enhance your memory at all. That’s an unfortunate implication.”  If seeing a film is supposed to be a pleasant diversion, in this case it is not.

 

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