Well, it’s A question. I don’t know if it’s THE question. But it is something that’s been playing on my, admittedly small and untroubled, mind of late. Is the future of cinema three dimensions? Will it affect the way stories are told? Is it just a ploy to curb piracy? There is no guarantee any of these questions will be answered in any way, shape or form but hey, what else are you gonna do for the next five minutes? Watch porn. You dirty, filthy buggers.
For those that don’t know, I work as a projectionist. I won’t say in which cinema as I’ll either be pestered for sexual intercourse all day by my many, many fans (just look at that picture top-left, Jewish chic, phwoar!) or, more likely, I’ll be lynched by some Dane Cook worshiper for calling him a talentless, unfunny, example of what is wrong with this world. And as a projectionist, 3-D scares the shit out of me, for the following reasons.
1. “If there’s a steady pay cheque in it, I’ll believe anything you say”
To put this article, rant, whatever, into context I am looking at this new technology through biased eyes. For the last couple of years I’ve been waking up in a cold sweat at the thought of all films going digital, thus rendering my purpose in life pretty much obsolete (what else am I gonna do, write ‘professionally’? Ha!). If 3-D takes off, or Real-D as it likes to be called, then 35mm is gone the way of the Dando. Along with my job.
2. “Think of the movies, for God’s sakes think of the movies!”
My other major worry is that films will suffer. Now I love films, really quite an unhealthy amount, and the reason I love films is not for their ‘oooh’, ‘ahhhh’, ‘shiny’ factor but for their stories. Stories have been around since for-bloody-ever and it just so happens to be that in this short space of time that I’m alive, cinema is, in my opinion, the best way to tell a story.
(For all you book lovers, I like books too but it takes me years to get through them and they don’t have Natalie Portman in them, unless they’re books about Natalie Portman). Yet, this focus on technology seems to be jettisoning the script in favour of the importance of the image. Just look at the examples, ‘Journey To The Centre Of The Earth’, ‘Beowulf’, ‘Scar’, ‘My Bloody Valentine’, the up-coming ‘G-Force’. Picture first, script last.
3. “Oh the pain! The pain of it all!”
Not to sound too much like a whingeing baby but… “It hurts my eyes!” While not quite Thom Yorke-esque, one of my eyes is ‘rugby ball-shaped’ and a hell of a lot weaker than the other. This means whenever I put on glasses, be it sun, 3-D or night-vision (don’t ask) my focus goes all funny and my head hurts. Me and Thom can’t be the only ones this affects (although it would be a nice conversation point if he ever caught me outside his house with my night vision…) and I’ve got enough self-induced problems without adding an actual disability to the list.
4. 3-D is funding Nazis!
Okay it isn’t but it is giving Disney even more money. And while I’m happy for Pixar to reap the benefits, the fact that Hannah Montana and the Jonas Bros earn more cash through these 3D concert movies to buy more unwanted babies on the black market which they then put into juicers and drink to keep their youthful good looks is just wrong. Very, very wrong. Its also wrong that it feels like they’re right in front of you, within punching distance. I almost ripped my back in half swinging at the little fuckers.
5. It’s all a conspiracy!
3-D is rubbish, everyone knows it’s rubbish but you can’t download a 3-D film. Yet. As soon as you can, Lucas, Spielberg et al will forget the third dimension as quickly as they remembered it. This is, quite possibly, true.
Recently I watched ‘Coraline’, what I believe to be the first truly great 3-D film. But once I’d taken off the glasses and stepped into the bright shining light I couldn’t decide whether the film was improved by this new technology or lessened. The only thing that mattered to me was the film was interesting and, in parts, original. It had well-drawn characters, some genuinely scary moments, all-in-all a cracking little kids film. Did it matter that at times it looked like stuff was coming out of the screen? Not to me, no.
Technological drives will never be abandoned, and I hope they never are (for at this very moment some boffin might be working on a way to have your balls gently tickled whilst watching the latest Morgan Freeman flick). I do, however, hope that it doesn’t affect the heart of the product. What makes a film, a film.
This is just one man’s opinion, and while it is right in every single way, feel free to state any opposing views below. I will attack you for them. And feel free to state views that agree with me. Although I’ll just label you ‘bandwagon jumpers’ and mock you mercilessly.