Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Everything in 3D

Soon after Avatar became the highest grossing movie of all time, almost every movie that came after bore the label 3D. However, many 3D movies turn out to be crap. This reminds us that when Toy Story came out years ago, many others followed suit in computer-generated animation but failed for mistakenly attributing the film’s success with the technology rather than the way the characters were heartwarmingly created.

Avatar created the same effect with other filmmakers for their failure to see Cameron’s knack for cinematography and special effects beyond the technology he employed. Of course, there are directors out there who knew better. The best example would be Christopher Nolan who did not use 3D for Inception when almost every other movie made at that time jumped into the bandwagon. Nolan explained that depth cues mostly come from occlusion, resolution, color and so forth that it is misleading to contrast 2D and 3D.

While 3D is most often associated with blockbuster Hollywood movies, the technology is also available elsewhere. It was September last year when Manila Bulletin tried to innovate by releasing a special issue in 3D format. On the other hand, developers of academic materials came up with learning tools incorporating the 3D technology, like a 3D skeleton that would be very hard for a student to imagine by just relying on technical descriptions. Hopefully, there can be more and more creative and useful applications of 3D to come up.

James Anthony Mina #4

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