Moviegoers have been treated to increasingly more eye-popping visuals lately, as the number of 3D movies has skyrocketed in the past few years. Ironically, 3-dimnesional visual technology is far from new; in fact, the earliest 3-D film, The Power of Love, premiered 88 years ago, though it obviously displayed  visual effects  far from what viewers saw when they watched Avatar or Toy Story 3.


Avatar, as we discussed in class, began an upward trend of 3-D movies. Whereas only 3 movies were made in 3-D in 2008, Avatar seemed to have opened the floodgates, giving way to 12 movies in 2009, more than 20 in 2010, and over 30 in 2011. Perhaps much of this 3-D fever can be attributed to Avatar’s commercial success, as it was one of the highest grossing films of all time. But on another note, the rampant rise of 3-D movies can be considered a detriment, as this focus on visuals has undoubtedly taken away from the other qualities that make movies great. While seeing Avatar in theatres (with glasses, popcorn, and soda, of course) was an unbelievable visual spectacle, it is a movie that lacks character development, and centers around a plot identical to that of Pocahontas.


I am all for visually striking movies, and the bullet-time parts of The Matrix are some of my favorites scenes in any movie, ever. However, the Matrix, as Bob Rehak notes, has a theme-driven purpose to its special effects. Since the characters are able to bend and break the rules of their physical world, it makes sense that the movie have visual elements that are slightly different, slightly more advanced, and in the end, cooler. But that was 10 years ago. Today, this new (maybe not as new as we think) wave of movies utilizes visuals as more of a cloak, meant to veil the true nature of these movies. Clash of the Titans was awful, Tron was an outrageous waste of $14, and The Last Airbender went so far as to receive a 6% on Rotten Tomatoes.


But the point is that people still went to see these movies, as flashy visuals have begun to trump everything that makes movies great. I am all for making movies fun to look at; you know I’d go live in Pandora in a heartbeat. But, to all those Hollywood producers out there reading our blog: 3-D is good, but let’s try to make actual movies from now on, OK?


  1. No comments yet.
  1. No trackbacks yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: