Thursday, June 2, 2016

Nostalgia Critic Reviews "Spy Kids 3D"



With half of the top ten movies at the box office being 3D movies (as of this writing), it seems poetic that this weeks episode of the hit internet series "Nostalgia Critic" should tackle "Spy Kids 3D." The Robert Rodriguez directed family film is notable in the history of 3D films as it was the first successful motion picture in years to show that 3D was a viable format.  It should be noted that at the time of it's release digital projectors were not very common, so most people saw the film in anaglyph 3D (AKA: The kind where you wear the red and blue colored glasses).  This also means "Spy Kids 3D" did not have the added benefit of having a $3 surcharge.  Nevertheless, the film would end up taking in around $197 million, showing that people actually liked the effect.  As the Critic points out though, this could almost be a dubious claim, seeing as how the effect of the 3D is "spastic."

In fact, 3D in portrayed in as three different characters in the video: Dignified ("Hugo," "How to Train Your Dragon"), Distracting ("Jaws 3," "Friday the 13th 3"), and Doesn't Count ("Clash of the Titans, "The Last Airbender"), all representing a different style of 3D.  As usual the Critic's review is funny and informative, but the reason I'm discussing this is because of how much he comments on the 3D.  First of all, he points out that despite 3D being in the name of the movie, the 3D version is NOT available on the BluRay!  That certainly seems to be defeating the point.  He also points out how the whole movie is filmed around the 3D gimmick, rather than having the 3D supporting the film.  When you watch all this in 2D it makes the film worse (if not entirely unwatchable).  It's a great way to get an idea of what this movie is like without having to watch the whole thing.

The stand out for me though, was the fact that he actually made 3D into three characters (called the 3D Brothers) and acknowledges that there is good 3D and bad 3D.  I hear way too often that 3D is pointless.  It doesn't contribute anything to the story.  It adds another $3 to the ticket price.  That third argument I'll concede, but I disagree with the first two.  What the Critic has done is essentially agree with both points of view.  There ARE movies where the 3D doesn't matter and there ARE movies where the 3D takes over the movie to a point where it's more annoying than anything!  The best 3D is the kind that pulls the viewers into the worlds.  Although the name of this blog is still "Save BluRay 3D," I am pretty certain the future of 3D is safe.  It's getting better and now almost every movie theater is capable of presenting it.

If anything we look back to movies like "Spy Kids 3D" as an example of how to not do this.  How, if left unchecked, 3D can become the center of the film and add a nauseating effect no one wants.  Interestingly, I watched this episode after getting home from a friends house, where we watched "Mad Max: Fury Road" in 3D.  They all walked away feeling that the 3D helped make that movie more enjoyable than it otherwise would have been in 2D, and made the action sequences more involving.  I have come to the conclusion that 3D is at a point where it can be taken seriously and, in many cases, should.  But there are three ways you can make a 3D movie and only one of them really works.  Future film makers would do well to remember this when moving forward in the future.

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