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3D HTF TOP 30 MUST OWN 3D TITLES

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Ronald Epstein, Dec 12, 2010.

  1. tbaio

    tbaio Stunt Coordinator

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    Ok, fair enough. We both come from 2 very different schools. I like the gimmick; you could live without it. For your sake, I hope 3-D for the home utilizes the aspects you prefer (depth, spacing, distance, etc.). Another question for you: if the 3-D format goes the route you want, will you then opt to get the machinery for 3-D home viewing? I ask because if the answer is still no, then the back & forth discussions on these threads is sadly a waste of time.
     
  2. Douglas Monce

    Douglas Monce Producer

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    My biggest problem with home 3D, at least at the moment, seems to be a technical one. It may have something to do with the refresh rate of the TVs, but what I've seen so far has a problem. Whenever there is a fast moving object on the screen, it looks to be suffering from what I can best describe as a rolling shutter effect. Its almost as if only half of the frame is refreshing and one eye seems to betting the wrong information. It causes me to go cross eyed. If that can be corrected, and if a good collection of quality films become available, I would considering investing when the price comes down to that of a regular non-3D TV.

    Don't get me wrong, I'm not apposed to 3D, its just that I've seen very few films that really do the format justice.

    Doug
     
  3. GregK

    GregK Screenwriter

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    Two things could be causing the rolling shutter effect that you are seeing. The first is all systems that use (time) sequential based systems, providing one view, then the other. This can cause a "phasing" effect when something moves at just the right speed on screen. Ditto for camera pans. This is less noticeable at higher refresh rates. Most 3DTVs run at 120hz, theatrical Real-D and Dolby 3-D run at 144hz. I believe some new consumer displays will operate at 240hz, which would reduce this effect even further. Most don't see this occasional artifact. I can see it, but like many video "quirks", I can also easily ignore it. The second factor could be a pulldown quirk used in a given 3DTV.

    *If* a passive (polarized) 3DTV doesn't use a sequential based display, then this issue would be eliminated, as both eyes see the same view simultaneously. Ditto for dual projection.

    ----------------

    I think (based on your previous postings) upon re-watching, you would like most of the fifty or so 1950's 3-D features. I was fortunate enough to make it to both World 3-D Film Expos, which featured almost all of the Golden Age selection of 3-D titles. It was a real treat.

    If you do not like most or none of the recent 3-D theatrical releases, then yes - in the long run, you would have a lack of 3-D programming.
     
  4. GregK

    GregK Screenwriter

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    Going back to the original topic: I also heard a lot of positive reviews on STEP UP 3D during its original theatrical 3-D run - in that the 3-D seemed to really enhance the overall presentation, and was not merely tacked on as an afterthought. Thanks for the review, Ron. I'll likely pick this up sometime soon, as I know both of my daughters will be sure to enjoy it. (And "Dad" likely will as well .. but don't tell anybody!)
     
  5. Douglas Monce

    Douglas Monce Producer

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    When I first saw it I suspected it had something to do with the refresh rate, though the TV I was seeing it on was a Panasonic 240hz. Of course this was in a Best Buy show room so who knows if it was set up correctly. I have seen it on more than one setup. I'm one of those people who can also see rainbows on LCD projectors. It may just be something that I will always have a problem with.

    I've enjoyed many of the 50's 3D films that I've had the chance to see. To be honest my judge of if a 3D movie is good or not, is if you can't tell that it was a 3D movie when watching it in 2d.

    Doug
     
  6. GregK

    GregK Screenwriter

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    Yeah.. It's always a tough call if an electronics store has something set up correctly. When my local Best Buy first set-up a Samsung LED 3DTV demo, they had "Monsters VS Aliens" in a 2D to 3D conversion mode instead of true stereoscopic 3D for a couple of weeks before it was corrected. Then there' was the Panasonic 3DTV display where the (likely heavily used and abused) display glasses were flickering, and then later died. To this date, my local BB has the Panasonic demo playing in 3-D with a dead pair of 3D glasses hooked up to view it.

    The movies that would fail your 3-D test almost 100% of the time are the movies from the 1980's 3-D wave. During that time period, I think literally everything but the kitchen sink was thrown at the camera at some time or another.
     
  7. Douglas Monce

    Douglas Monce Producer

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    OH yeah I saw many of the 3D films of the 80's. In fact in Coming at Ya! they literally do throw the kitchen sink at you.

    Doug
     
  8. Phoebus

    Phoebus Stunt Coordinator

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    With regard to the laserdisc vs. blu-ray discussion, I'm not entirely sure the argument makes sense to me.

    Didn't Philips' Laserdisc technology get incorporated into the new CD format? The laserdisc never really entered the market sufficiently to drive prices down, certainly not here in the UK at least, where Laserdiscs themselves seemed to be marketed more as a luxury item.

    But once the concept of a laserdisc became CD sized in 1999 it caught the imagination and took off. Surely all the delights of a laserdisc, all those years of producing them to the highest cinephile quality were rapidly assimilated into the DVD format. And the OAR was a rather democratic decision, IMHO, led by film experts and fans, but if the public would have preferred pan and scan, then dvds would have ended up that way.

    But blu-ray is an odd variant, as the format was initially marketed to the ps3 player to a large extent. Thus we ended up with a glut of "boys" movies at first, sci-fi, action, horror, CGI kids, etc. It hasn't really lost that flavour in terms of its main stock.

    It is fair to suggest that now there is a growing audience for older movies encoded onto the blu-ray format, and that many classic movies from the major studios tend not to region code, to allow for a world market, even if published in the USA.

    And what else are we seeing with the bluray format? A new appreciation of VistaVision, Todd-AO, Cinerama, Super/Ultra Panavision - Technirama has been a revelation to me, in particular.

    We're also seeing beautiful Technicolor restorations such as Gone With the Wind, The Red Shoes and Fantasia which are often wondrous and "painterly" to view - particularly when I project them with a HD projector. (I'm particularly looking forward to Bambi, as the old dvd worked surprisingly well when projected - the fine details in the watercolor backgrounds really transform the piece into something rather more expressionistic and emotional than you'd expect, IMHO)

    But we have to comprehend that there was a HD format war and this war was won by the Sony PS3.

    As for me I find the whole unfolding of product rather slow but also quite exciting, as each new 70mm film, say, becomes as much an event as in the old days. Surely we are living in interesting times, and we should acknowledge laserdisc, dvd and bluray as progressions of very similar tech, with very similar aspirations.
     
  9. tbaio

    tbaio Stunt Coordinator

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    Guys, I have to tell you, the most memorable 3-D experiences are those in which the picture seems to extend beyond the screen & gets close to the audience. Another thing: what did you expect from a movie called Commin at Ya! & in 3-D? You were given a fair heads up about what to expect. If you still chose to see the movie and were disappointed, that's your fault.
     
  10. tbaio

    tbaio Stunt Coordinator

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    Step Up 3-D is a movie where the saving graces are its impressive dance sequences & 3-D. Be prepared for that as the plot & characters are laughable. Also, judging by your dislike for gimmicky 3-D effects, be prepared to be disappointed because the 3-D is very gimmicky (I thought it saved the movie personally). I thought the 3-D & dancing was enough to save the story & sincerely hope you & your family appreciate it as well.
     
  11. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Founder
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    I am taking Thomas' response as a recommendation.

    Despite all the shortcomings that Thomas pointed out
    (which are indeed true), this is one of my favorite 3D titles
    to demo for friends.

    The dance sequences, in 3D, are pretty impressive. On
    top of that, the audio packs a walloping punch.

    Yes, there is a lot of "gimmicky" 3D here, but as Thomas
    points out, that greatly enhances the film. I don't know why
    some people are against gimmicky 3D. I wish things were
    thrown at the camera more often. Isn't that one of the
    reasons why people enjoy the format? The best WOW
    moments come when objects protrude out of the screen,
    and out towards the viewer's face.

    Yes, absolutely when overused, gimmicky 3D can wear
    thin and ruin a movie. There are limits to its use. That being
    said, I don't think it's used enough.
     
  12. Douglas Monce

    Douglas Monce Producer

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    Ron, I think like any tool in the filmmakers bag, it can be used effectively, or it can be over used. When over used, in my opinion, it looses its effectiveness and its value as a tool to tell the story.

    Just as an example, many people, myself included were complaining about the recent Shakycam trend in action movies. It never became so obvious too me as when I saw A Passage to India on blu-ray after not having seen the film sense I saw it in the theater in 84.

    Now of course Passage is NOT an action film, but was struck me was Lean's use of the hand held camera. As far as I can tell there is only one hand held shot in the whole movie. Its when Judy Davis's character gets up and walks to the witness stand, and she is followed by a not very steady hand held camera. That shot was SO unnerving exactly because it was the only shot in the film.

    Of course this is an extreme example, but the lesson from it is valid. I guess I'm from the old school where you save your big guns for the point at which it can be most effective in the story. If you just use it willy nilly, the audience becomes numb to it.

    In addition, many people, again myself included, have a very hard time with the off the screen effects. Repeated use of that effect gives me eye strain and by the end of the film I have a massive headache.

    Doug
     
  13. tbaio

    tbaio Stunt Coordinator

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    Luckily for you, most 3-D titles (thus far) have a 2-D option as well. The 3-D discs I've seen in 2-D: Monster House, My Bloody Valentine, Monsters vs Aliens, Friday the 13th Part 3-D were just fine in 2-D. Avatar, which was shot in 3-D, looks absolutely beautiful without the 3-D. So you're in luck. You & others can still enjoy the film without suffering eyestrain, headaches, etc.
     
  14. Douglas Monce

    Douglas Monce Producer

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    But you see this is the problem. I LIKE 3D and I would like to see some quality films made in 3D.

    Doug
     
  15. Edwin-S

    Edwin-S Lead Actor
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    I've seen a few "3D" films now, and I have yet to see any effect where an object feels like it is protruding from the screen. Even with 3D, I am acutely aware that there is a plane between me and the image. The closest time I have felt that I was right in the film was in "Avatar". In that film, there was a scene involving dust motes that made it seem like they were floating right in front of you. You felt like you could reach out and grab them. That scene lasted only a few seconds and it is the only time I have felt that any 3D effectively extended beyond the plane of the screen. To me, 3D is like any other tool. If it serves to advance the story then use it. TRON is an example of where it is at least used in service to the story. I know a lot of people think the 3D in TRON was less than effective, but AFAIAC it worked well enough because it was first and foremost used to differentiate the electronic world from the real world. It wasn't just used entirely as a gimmick.
     
  16. tbaio

    tbaio Stunt Coordinator

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    Out of curiosity, which films were they? I've got a feeling the ones you saw were surely post-converted; which won't have any of the "wow" shots (the ones which come out at the audience) in them.
     
  17. GregK

    GregK Screenwriter

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    Please allow me to clarify my own standpoint. I don't mind the occasional gimmick shot when it fits the story. There are some movies where I can tell it was staged for 3-D, including off screen effects ...but if they are crafted into the feature then some thought has been put into it. I specifically mentioned "Comin At Ya" because that's all the movie is about - Take away the 3-D and whats left? Ditto for the Treasure of the Four Crowns and a couple of others. When I revisited these titles, it was a shock on how bad some the other minor things in the movie were: Things like plot, character development, pacing, etc .. If you want 3D to die a quick death, just make some more of these.

    Can "Comin At Ya" be fun? If you just want to see random objects thrown out of screen almost non-stop for an hour and a half, then yes. I first enjoyed it during it's original theatrical run in 3-D because it was the first polarized 3-D feature shown locally in years. It also kicked off the 1980s 3D wave. Re-watching it was not so great. On that note, even the creators of "Comin At Ya" said you can only pull off a movie like that once - after that, you need substance. But for a lot of the 1980's 3-D movies that never happened.

    Doug mentioned his bar for 3-D standards, so I'll mention one of mine: If the movie can't stand on its own in 2-D, then most of the time its probably not worth watching. So with that in mind, look at most of the 1950s titles. Ditto for the recent features. They are targeted for BOTH 2D and 3D audiences and are not solely gimmick driven. Many of the 1980s titles were not. 3-D has been labeled by many as just a gimmick, and its something many in the industry have worked very hard to move past.


    Ron mentioned I probably won't like STEP UP and I'll respectfully disagree, as I have the trailer in 3-D. STEP UP (like It Came From Outer Space, Creature, Kiss Me Kate and others) appears to have craftfully blended off screen effects into the story line, unlike the blatant "lets stick my hand out at the camera" crap we've seen before. This is something many reviewers also noted during its theatrical 3D run.



     
  18. Jon Lidolt

    Jon Lidolt Stunt Coordinator

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    I for one like 3-D movies - if they're shot correctly. I just wish that our current crop of filmmakers would learn that you have to compose your shots differently when you're photographing a stereoscopic film. Alfred Hitchcock figured it out right away when he made Dial M for Murder, his one and only feature in 3-D. The way he grouped the actors one in front of the other and how he used his camera angles all contributed to the drama. And when he did have something poking out of the screen at you it was to focus your attention on a specific piece of action that furthered the plot. Maybe all of Hollywood should be forced to watch this movie in 3-D to see how it's done.
     
  19. Douglas Monce

    Douglas Monce Producer

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    Excellent post Greg. Your point about a film playing just as well in 2D as 3D is one I intended to make in my other post, but I forgot!

    Its interesting to note that James Cameron never had the chance to view Avatar in 3D before the release. Now I'm not a fan of the film, but I recognize it as quality filmmaking, and its clear that the story was first and for most the point of the film. It just happens to be in 3D.

    Doug
     
  20. Douglas Monce

    Douglas Monce Producer

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    This is a VERY good point. But I think that a film that is well composed in 2D, will also be well composed for 3D. The problem is technology has, frankly, made a lot of Hollywood filmmakers lazy.

    Many filmmakers today don't know how to light, (they just use soft boxes for everything) and they don't know how to create a strong composition in the frame. Of course why would they need to. Most films today are just a bunch of extreme close ups broken up by the occasional master shot.

    Doug
     

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