James Cameron was the first person to say it, but I’ll paraphrase here: Distributing your movie in 3-D when it was shot in 2-D is a pointless act of stupidity. He should know. The only movie I have ever seen in 3-D that was impressive was Avatar. The top-grossing movie was shot entirely using 3-D equipment and exquisite protocols. The bandwagon that has followed (and somewhat preceded) Avatar is full of tacked-on tech that accomplishes two things, and two things only: turning a film into a novelty, and milking extra dollars from the audiences.
Scott Weinberg writes more on this topic in Here’s How 3-D is Ruining Movies.
But to jam an allegedly whiz-bang 3-D face-lift onto a film that was never shot for such a presentation? It’s a rather shameless marketing gimmick that seems to be making some solid coin — and that sucks because the 3-D technology slathered all over Louis Leterrier’s Clash of the Titans remake does nothing but mar the film. At best it’s a forgettable nuisance (nothing in the movie truly “jumps” out at you; there’s no real “depth of field” expansion; and the 3-D stuff does nothing to get you “into” the action that the normal film wouldn’t) and at worst it’s a visual headache that actively damages the film’s production design and special effects. I noticed the surface of a tree that was “bubbling,” and I thought it was supposed to be an evil tree until I realized … nope, that’s just the low-rent shake & bake “3-D conversion” process in action.
I will be watching Clash of the Titans sans glasses, thank you very much, and I’ll use the extra money I save to feed a starving kitten. So there.
(Photo: 20th Century Fox)