During a long and busy day, this caught my eye:
Ever since ... Avatar squatted its bloated, blue, Na'vi ass on American cinema, every film that comes out with some semblance of special effects has "3D" pasted on top of it.
Most people know the drill by now: you go to a 3D movie, pay a little extra, chuckle at how stupid everyone looks wearing those glasses, and the film starts. For the first two minutes, it's impressive. Stuff pops out of the screen and it's pretty neat. For the remaining 118 minutes, however, you either forget you're watching a 3D movie or simply stop giving a shit.
And it only really works once ...
3-D appears to in decline across the fruited plain. The rest of the world still appears to love it, so maybe they are behind us ... or know something we don't.
I can take the Moving View Master or leave it alone. I've enjoyed the stereo versions of some DreamWorks movies; Jeffrey K.'s place seems to push the medium in entertaining directions. Still in all, as a DreamWorks animator remarked to me today:
"... I was watching a 3-D feature a couple of weeks ago, and the glasses everyone was wearing were really thick. Halfway through the movie I took mine off a minute and the colors were a lot more intense. Those goggles really subdue the brightness and colors ..."
3-D does, on occasion, add value. But generally not three or five bucks worth. And with some features, there is almost none at all. The "3-D" is so tepid, and the trade-off in screen brightness so pronounced, that it's really better to stare at the flat-screen version.
(When I saw a flat-screen version of Avatar, I liked it fine. This probably makes me some kind of visual Luddite. Sue me.)