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Debate – A Debate In 3D


Posted October 13, 2014 by

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A Debate In 3D

One of the big ‘advances’ to impact cinema in the last few years has been the resurgence of 3D movies. Thanks to the blockbuster success that is ‘Avatar’ in 2009, every action movie nowadays feels the need to bring out a 3D version alongside the usual format. Even though 3D films and the concept of three dimensional cinema has been around for a long time, it has never been as prevalent in mainstream films as it has over the last few years. Its new found success has prompted many debates about whether adding a 3D element to movies actually enhances the film or is just a gimmick that isn’t worth the extra money spent on it.

On the one hand, adding a 3D element to action and horror movies can really make the movie stand out over the rest. Objects appearing to fly out of the screen at the audience, scary monsters jumping out at you or arms coming towards the viewers as a punch is thrown shown the 3D element at its best. When done really well, it can almost make the audience feel part of the film. However, these films are few and far between. Most films that choose to add a 3D element nowadays try and do it in a subtle way. Making landscapes seem 3 dimensional and layered or attempting to add an extra component to how the films look overall without actually using 3D for its true purpose.

Let’s face it, 3D is only good when a filmmaker uses it to go all out, in your face 3D, throwing every possible element in there every 10 minutes to use 3D at its full potential. If the only part of the film that has anything appearing to come out of the screen is half way through and lasts about 10 seconds, you’ve essentially sat in a room for a few hours with those awful glasses on looking like an absolute idiot for only 10 seconds of footage that actually utilise the accessory you are forced to wear. Basically, if you’re not going to go all out, why bother? It’s not as though watching a movie in 3D is vastly different from watching the usual 2D version. The story’s still the same, the people are still the same and the overall look of the film is still essentially the same. Actually, if anything, the 2D version probably looks better overall as I often find that 3D films have a tendency to look a bit blurry, especially during fast action sequences. It just can’t keep up with that kind of pace and, as a result, the quality of the film suffers.

I must also admit that I come from a slightly biased viewpoint. 3D films give me epic headaches. I don’t know whether it’s the glasses or the way they are shot but about 20 minutes into the film I get a horrific headache that ruins the rest of the movie for me. Surely I’m not the only one though, and if that is the case, a large chunk of the audience is far less likely to enjoy the film before they’ve even set foot in the cinema screen. It just seems to me that the negative elements of 3D films far outweigh the positives in this case.

Thankfully, this trend seems to be dying out slowly but surely. A fad that has reached its peak and is beginning to fall back into obscurity, destined to have a resurgence again years in the future after a stand-alone 3D film becomes a huge hit and the other film studios decide to take advantage of its success. The film industry has managed to survive many decades without audiences having to wear ridiculous glasses. I’m sure it can continue to do the same.


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Amy Ulliott
Just One More Movie
Freelance Contributor

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