3D: Gimmick? Breakthrough? Both? Neither?

By  |  Tuesday, December 29, 2009 at 9:56 am

First, a disclaimer: I’m instinctively skeptical about 3D. I’ve seen my fair share of 3D movies over the last three decades or so, and they always leave me squinting, adjusting my glasses, and generally not enjoying myself. It seems like a lot of effort to go through for an effect that’s less like real life and more like a humongous View-Master. Your mileage may vary (I’ve always assumed that the fact I wear glasses in real life is an issue).

All 3D reminds me of this (no, I haven’t seen Avatar yet):

Anyhow, as you know, we’re in the midst of a sort of 3D renaissance. It started in theaters, but is in the process of coming home–or trying to, at least. Over at HDGuru.com, they’re reporting that DirecTV will be announcing an all-3D channel next week at the Consumer Electronics Show. It’ll be compatible with new 3D-capable TVs that’ll be announced at the show. And yes, you’ll need to wear special glasses.

Me, I don’t think I’m going to love 3D until it’s (A) closer to true 3D than the 2.5D effect you’ve always gotten; (B) doesn’t involve glasses; (C) isn’t used by moviemakers for pointless “HEY, THIS IS 3D!” effects. I expect all three points to be resolved by oh, 2050 or so. But I’m willing to be pleasantly surprised when I head to Vegas for CES in a little over a week.

This seems like a good excuse for a T-Poll:

1 Comment

Read more: 

1 Comments For This Post

  1. Vulpine Says:

    I’m thinking you really need to see Avatar before you go to CES just so you have a current point of reference. While I won’t argue that Brendan Fraser in “Journey to the Center of the Earth” was quite cliche, the current version of 3D as filmed in Avatar really wasn’t as “in your face” as older versions and helped you to feel like you were witnessing the story much better than it would in 2D. This doesn’t mean they didn’t do a few of the stereotypical gimmicks of pointing a gun at you, or sending an arrow your way, but they didn’t really go out of their way to stuff it in your face, either.

    Like you, I’m hoping for a much more realistic 3D experience in the future, but at least for now, holography is the only technology that lets you move completely around the object, and that’s far too complex and expensive to try to turn into production media as yet, not to mention the translucence of the image. Until then, Avatar appears to be the best of the current round of 3D movies as far as the technology is concerned.