FRIDAY NIGHT KNIFE FIGHTS: 3D MOVIES VS. 2D MOVIES – Part 3 (Conclusion)
With Michael Arruda, L.L. Soares, and Dan Keohane
MA: Welcome back to the third and final segment of our Great 3D Debate. Once again L.L. and I are joined by Dan Keohane.
(Dan is seen making a cigarette disappear up his nose.)
LS: I love that trick!
(Dan pulls it out of his ear.)
MA: We’re discussing 3D movies vs. 2D movies, and so far, 2D movies have had the upper hand in this duel. We all love 3D effects, but we seem to be in agreement that on their own, they don’t make a movie better, and nowadays with all these new 3D movies, it costs more to buy a ticket.
MA: And that’s exactly the topic we’re leading off with tonight: the extra cost of the 3D ticket, which begs the question, are these new 3D movies worth the extra ticket prices the theaters charge? Or is it a scam by the film companies and theaters?
LS: I sound like a broken record, but except for AVATAR, 3D movies are not worth the extra ticket price at all. It really does feel like a scam. Plus you still have to wear annoying glasses – they’re just sturdier now. I find it ludicrous, by the way, that you have to pay extra for those glasses and then afterwards the theaters ask you to donate them back so they can be recycled. How about refunding my $5 surcharge if I return the glasses?
MA: Good point.
I don’t think the new 3D movies are worth the extra ticket prices either.
Is it a scam? I don’t know. I’d like to think it’s not a scam, but the more I think about it, the more upset I become. Why? I can understand a film like AVATAR which spent so much money on top-of-the-line best-of-the-best 3D effects, but the rest of these movies? The effects aren’t as good, supposedly because they weren’t as expensive, yet they charge the same extra fee. What’s up with that? I smell a rat, and it doesn’t smell good!
If 3D movies cost the same as 2D movies, I’d be all for them because the effects are fun and sometimes they do add something to the movie, but factor in the extra cost, and that takes the fun away. In other words, if you’re going to charge me extra because of 3D effects, then those effects had better be damn good and the main reason I’m seeing this movie!
What’s next? Pay more for certain directors? Actors? Steven Spielberg directed this movie, so it costs $3.00 more. What’s that? This movie stars BOTH Robert DeNiro and Al Pacino? $3.00 co-actor fee.
I don’t like the 3D fee. Sure, the argument is that the equipment needed at the theater to show these films in 3D costs more, but that argument only goes so far. Gas prices keep going up, so it costs me more each week to drive to the theater, so we’re in the same boat. I don’t get to request lower ticket prices because it costs more to drive there. I just suck it up. The theaters should too.
LS: Michael —since you and I rarely have access to preview screenings for films—we just about always have to pay for movie tickets out of our own pockets. Sometimes, I bitch about this. But truth is, it keeps us honest. If I go see a movie for free and it has gimmicky 3D effects, I’ll be more forgiving. But if I just paid $15 for a movie where the 3D effects add nothing, I am going to be pissed off. Just like our readers.
DK: Now here’s an idea—.
MA: Are you through doing magic tricks?
DK: Maybe. Actually, it’s the only one I know, so I have no choice (laughs). What was I saying?
LS (to MA): Stop interrupting our guest! You’re the host. You’re not supposed to be rude. This isn’t Fox News!
MA: I wasn’t being rude. I just wanted to find out if he was going to do something else, like pull a rabbit out of his jacket.
DK: No, no rabbits.
MA: You were saying something about an idea.
DK: Yes— if Hollywood is going to insist on using this new toy of theirs… how about trying out this conversion (from 2D to 3D) trick on some classic sci-fi movies, or classic movies which have enough effects that would lend themselves to the effect. 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY (1968) in 3D? That would be very cool. STAR WARS (been redone so often no year fits anymore, lol) in 3D? Oh yea. BREAKFAST AT TIFFANY’S (1961)? Probably not.
MA: I’d like to see the 1953 version of WAR OF THE WORLDS in 3D. That’d be cool.
LS: Who walked in?
MA: Ha, ha! We’ve reached the moment our readers have been waiting for. It’s time to make our decision, to declare a winner of this bout. 3D vs. 2D. Are 3D movies the future of motion pictures, and do we want to see more of them?
Or, have we had enough of 3D already and want to go back to just 2D movies, saving 3D for once in a blue moon?
So, what will it be? 3D, or 2D? Dan?
DK: When the 3D floodwaters have settled, we’ll be left with a select few movies in 3D which should be in 3D, and the rest will come back to roost in 2D, simply because people will stop paying for it, and the extra cost to produce/convert these movies will become unprofitable. Hopefully more theaters will convert to digital “projection”, and when that happens, 2D will be even more brilliant to watch. That is, if the movie itself is brilliant. Don’t forget, you still need to make a good movie. That’s what will bring people in to the theaters. If they want 3D, they’ll have plenty of it when they walk outside into the real world. So, it’s 2D for me.
LS: A 3D movie once in a while would be just fine. Something like the next PIRAHNA movie.
MA: Or better yet, something else. The world doesn’t need another PIRANHA 3D movie.
LS: Well, it’s going to get it because they’re already working on the sequel!
MA: I know, I know. You don’t have to remind me.
LS: A horror flick once in a while, and some cartoons, but not all of them. Once in a blue moon is perfect. But this push to try to make every single movie that comes out a 3D extravaganza is just a con game to separate us from our money for shoddy merchandise.
Part of the problem is, too, that they’re coming out with 3D televisions now, and they have to create content to make the more expensive TVs worth buying. This is probably a big part of the push to make more movies in 3D. But once again, it’s just another way to take our hard-earned money. I don’t care about 3D movies, and I don’t care about 3D TV. I refuse to get sucked in by these things. I wish they would just go away. Once in a while is fine. But 3D 24/7—every time we go to the movies or turn on a television set—is overkill.
Look, what makes for a great movie is the story, the acting, the direction. Without these things, no gimmick in the world is going to improve your work. Unless you wield billions of dollars l don’t think it’s worth it. 2D, damn it!
MA: Since I loved AVATAR so much, I really wanted 3D to be the future of motion pictures, but as long as they’re charging extra for it, I’m not into it. Get rid of the extra charge, and I’m all in.
As is stands now, we have to pay extra for 3D, so as long as this stands, I’m against it. It’s 2D movies for me!
Well, there you have it! It’s unanimous! 2D movies win out. I mean, we all love 3D, but it costs more to see them, and really doesn’t add a whole lot to the quality of the movie. Thanks, guys for chiming in on this.
DK: No problem. I just remembered another trick I know how to do. Do you guys mind if I try something new?
LS: Go for it. We’ve seen your other trick so many times, it’d be good to see something new.
MA: Go right ahead.
DK: I’m not sure if this will work. It’s been a while. I’ll say the magic words and snap my fingers— (utters what seems to be a foreign language and snaps his fingers— in a poof of smoke, MA & LS suddenly disappear.) Hmm. That wasn’t supposed to happen. Guys? You still here somewhere? This has never happened before. I’m sure they’ll be back in time for their next column— won’ t they?
This has been FRIDAY NIGHT KNIFE FIGHTS—-good night everybody!