Everything you ever wanted to know about 3D but were afraid to ask

Mr.D

Distinguished Member
I've not seen it however general opinion has been very favourable about the 3d . Maybe your screening was poor. About 1/3 of the film was converted , a mix of live action and VFX shots , not really any single scene of the film its all mixed together.
 

Louis Mazzini

Active Member
I was totally baffled in the aftermath of Tron by many people saying that they thought it had good 3D; I now find myself back in the exact same boat with this latest Transformers offering: I thought Transformers’ 3D was the least impressive that I’ve seen in a live(ish) action film that was natively(ish…) filmed stereoscopically.

As Steve mentions, one of the problems was that Bay’s camera is as hectic as ever. I know it has been mentioned that, because he was filming in 3D, he was forced to put the brakes on this a bit - I didn’t really notice any such control.

The scenes of people talking were very reminiscent of Tron – a flattened face with a layer of background behind. There was no sense of solidity to anything and, compared to something like Avatar, little evidence that much thought had been given to the stereoscopic frame.

There was quite a lot of shallow depth of field – which suggests to me that the film was shot with more regard for how it would look in 2D than 3D. I don’t know who the stereographer was on this film, but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t someone of the calibre of whoever worked on Resident Evil, Drive Angry or The Hole, all three of which I regard as very good examples of how to film in 3D.

It may have been due to the particular screening I was at (a Real D presentation), but there was a large amount of ghosting visible. I think this is one of the things the anti-3D crowd talk about a lot, referring to it as a blurry image. This film was frequently very blurry due to ghosting. Also, as Steve mentioned, there were several shots that simply looked wrong, with the background appearing to be in the wrong plane (i.e. too close).

Another thing that anti-3D people often say is, “The 3D added nothing to the film.” I usually despair at this statement as it generally translates to me as, “I have no appreciation for the compositional art form of 3D”. In the case of Transformers …the 3D added nothing to the film. It simply acted as a barrier to the film itself.

Like Steve, I’d had more than enough after an hour and decided it was time to let go of this particular rising balloon, and made my escape from the cinema under cover of my 3D glasses. (So, it could be that the 3D got really good in the second half but, judging by the quality of the first half, I doubt it.)

This is one of the big native 3D films of the year, and I’ll be interested to see what its 2D/3D box office split is. I’m a little concerned that quite a few people seem to be regarding this as being good quality 3D when, from what I saw, it appeared to have been a sloppy and ill-conceived implementation of the technique. (In another thread here at AVForums in the Movies section one or two people have suggested that the quality of the 3D is up there with Avatar’s which, for my money, is a bit like comparing the quality of the film itself with Citizen Kane.) Also, with the film being so poor, it’s likely to encourage the notion that 3D is only suitable for idiotic, badly made, lowest common denominator nonsense.

A real surprise for me, going back to Mr D’s earlier comments, was that the trailer for Captain America (a 2D conversion) possibly had better looking 3D than Transformers. I should add that it still didn’t look real but, at least from a compositional point of view, it appeared to do a better job than Transformers.

It’s a bit too early to judge whether this is another nail in the coffin for 3D - but I certainly hope it’s a nail in the coffin for Michael Bay’s Transformers films…
 

DaveCheltenham

Active Member
Not an expert technical opinion but my wife went with our daughter to see the latest Transformers offering and spent much of the film with the glasses off. Her viewing experience was not improved by the 3D and she is now quite anti.

Regards
 

Paul Hayward

Active Member
I have to say that I am enormously relieved to read about these experiences of Transformers 3D. Many posts in other parts of the internet rave about the 3D effects in Transformers.I was beginning to think it was just me. I thought the 3D was at times a complete mess. The ghosting and unnatural fast motion were particularly bad, not to mention the awful acting and embarrassing script. I think the future of 3D in the current economic climate is in the balance.

Steve, thank you for most informative report on your day at Basingstoke. I enjoyed all your report had to offer. One thing I was a bit disappointed with was the absence of any reference to the triple flash refresh technique for active glasses. Phil Hinton has experienced triple flash in the Sim2 Lumis projector and this does seem to offer a much more relaxing and natural 3D experience especially I would have thought for Plasma's. This higher refresh of 72HZ per eye compared to the slower 60HZ standard, might even iron out some of the unsettling strain and nausea reported by Gordon Convergence. Yet this subject is hardly discussed anywhere at present.

Regards,

Paul
 

Steve Withers

Reviewer
Paul, following on from your comments about Transformers I see that early reviews of Harry Potter recommend not seeing it in 3D because the film is already quite dark and the addition of glasses makes it unwatchable. Considering that and the fact it is a 2D to 3D conversion I will definitely be seeing it in 2D as I don't want anything to detract from the story - I strongly recommend that anyone who is a potter fan do the same. All hope is not lost on the 3D front though, I just saw the trailer for Martin Scorsese's 'Hugo Cabaret' and even in 2D I could see that this film has potential especially in the hands of someone as talented and knowledgable as Scorsese.

As for Triple Flash Paul, that particular technology didn't come up whilst I was at the Sony event however if you take a look at my review of the Sim2 Lumis 3D-S you will see that I do discuss it there.
 

Paul Hayward

Active Member
Hi Steve,

Thank you for your reply. For some daft reason I wrongly assumed Phil Hinton had been involved in that review and I am sorry for the mistake. I will definitely be taking your advise about Harry Potter and the Scorsase film sounds promising. As I have your attention, albeit fleetingly, I have been pouring over your review of the new Pani VT30 65''. An excellent review by the way and it sounds like the 3D is very well implemented. Would you say it was on a par with the Sim2 triple flash for ease of viewing? As you may guess, I am considering this unit and would value your experience. Meantime I will check out the Lumis Solo review once more.

Regards,

Paul
 

Steve Withers

Reviewer
The 3D on the P65VT30 is excellent and whilst the Sim2 might be slightly better it is also considerably more expensive!
 

Steve Withers

Reviewer
According to boxofficemojo.com the split between 3D and 2D for Transformers 3 was a much better 60:40 but for Harry Potter it was 43:57 which is more in line with other 3D movies this year.
 
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Mr_Grinch

Member
I'm a big 3D fan/defender even post converted, which can look fantastic at times. Case in point, the first three Shrek films. There was an article about it, here:

Shrek 3D Conversion - 3D Vision Blog

Now I watched the first three films when I received them with my Samsung C680 (which incidentally went back as it was terrible) and I honestly couldn't tell that they were post converted, they were very convincing. You could argue the conversion is different being it's CG, but in the article it mentions nothing was re-rendered. They were given SOME assets but not everything.

My experience with Transformers, however, was dreadful, I put it down to the screen which was filthy. There were white stains streaking down the screen (eep!), clearly visible on any bright shots. It was very off putting. The 3D was also Cross Talk ridden, I put it down to the poor quality screen not reflecting properly, however it seems others have had the same issue.

I did take in Sanctum at the cinema, pretty poorly acted film but I -believe- that was filmed in 3D. It looked great, caving is clearly an area where depth works well!

Anyway, this was a very interesting article, thanks for it.
 

Steve Withers

Reviewer
Thanks for the link, that was an interesting read Mr Grinch. I actually have all four Shrek films on 3D Blu-ray but I haven't had a chance to watch them yet.

Whilst I can totally sympathise with your dreadful cinema experience on Transformers I don't think it is just the cinema, the film is genuinely terrible and the 3D is largely unwatchable. When I saw Transformers at the cinema I also saw loads of crosstalk so I suspect it can't just be blamed on a ropey screen.

I agree with you about Sanctum, great 3D but rubbish film, in fact we actually discuss Sanctum in the most recent Movies Podcast. Speaking of dreadful cinema experiences when I saw Sanctum in 3D at the movies the projectionist managed to use the wrong ratio and projected at 2.35:1 instead of 1.85:1!
 

kbfern

Distinguished Member
What on earth is this thread doing in the forum news notices sub forum,I just stumbled on it by accident.Surely it should be in a more appropriate sub forum so that more folks can read this informative thread.
 

Steve Withers

Reviewer
Thanks for the comment kbfern but to be fair this thread has been on the home page for the last two months.
 

kbfern

Distinguished Member
I never use home page as my bookmark for avforum is set to open at the forums section which I would have thought quite a few regulars would do as the home page is a bit of a waste to us veterans.

What's the problem with having it on the home page and one of the other sub forums that relate to 3D or movies.After all it's here in a pretty low used area I would have thought,
 

Steve Withers

Reviewer
There's no problem with having it in one of the 3D related sub-forums and it has probably been on the home page long enough now, I'll get it moved.
 

Mr.D

Distinguished Member
I'm a big 3D fan/defender even post converted, which can look fantastic at times. Case in point, the first three Shrek films. There was an article about it, here:

Shrek 3D Conversion - 3D Vision Blog

they were not the only company to do the Shrek conversion. In fact I'm not sure they did any of the first one. The same company that did the conversion on Transformers also did work on Shrek and it was converted not rerendered as stereo.

There is no way something as obvious as crosstalk ( disparity) would make it past the QC at a conversion. If you saw a lot of ghosting its down to the projection.
 

Jason Shouler

Active Member
I agree that many budget 3D conversions (often of films which are weak in their 2D form anyway:rolleyes:) are enough to put anyone off 3D; but the examples you've mentioned aren't on my list :confused:

I thought Clash of the Titans was excellent. It may have had a few conversion errors but it was still infinitely more enjoyable than the 2D version.

3D alone can never make up for a weak film concept - thus I didn't enjoy Tron that much even though I didn't have an issue with the 3D as many seemed to.

Sanctum I thought was excellent (I'm an old hand caver). So captivated that by the end I'd forgotten I was even wearing glasses or watching 3D at all.

Isn't this the very point everyone misses though. There's nothing remotely strange about 3D - it something we've all experienced almost since birth. If anything is strange, it's looking at a 2D screen and attempting to convert it into a sense of reality. All over this Forum (well 3D section anyway) you hear comments about amazing pop-outs or great 3D. I can't help thinking such observations miss the point. Good 3D should be so natural that you're not even aware you're watching it - much like colour adds to a B&W film.

That anyone would choose to watch a movie in 2D rather than 3D I find simply incomprehensible (aside from perhaps due to a high price differential) :confused: I genuinely could find more reasons for watching a film in B&W e.g. greater authenticity if dated in the past perhaps.
 
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Treguard

Active Member
And having strabismus :D most things dont work, but little things do a bit.
 
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Chevyonfuel

Distinguished Member
This thread does a good job of summing up where we are with 3D at the moment I think. Transformers DOTM is one of those marmite films, much like Tron Legacy. The 3D used wasn't really of the gimmick sort, if anything it strived for the reverse, and went for depth, clarity and razor sharp detail. Technically they're nearly faultless, but with the exception of a few scenes, they don't really 'wow' the audience sadly (as I found out, with a friend nodding off during the battle scene in DOTM, despite being sat infront of a HD33 PJ and fairly rude 7.1 sound system).

Whilst the 3D nuts among us can appreciate the technically excellent transfers on BD's for what they are, wider audiences I guess have a perception that a 3D film will be constantly leaping out at them, and when it doesn't, they feel it isn't really 3D. As mentioned already, 3D done well will provide an immersive experience that almost becomes subliminal. You stop looking for hints that it's 3D and just get pulled into the scene.

I really do believe 3D has a place in the home cinema market (particularly and more likely the gaming community I imagine), and the TV & PJ manufacturers are producing better and better kit, but they're at the mercy of studios that fob off the public with 2nd rate post converted tripe, and generally, content that while is technically excellent, people don't want to see.

One big worry emerged today, IMO. Hugo was widely acknowledged to be one of the best 3D experiences to date, and it was hoped that it'd essentially be the next Avatar in terms of 3D demo material. Having read that the 3D BD is plagued by cross talk issues (to the point where it possibly isn't an equipment issue), it could be a big letdown. I hope that isn't the case, as it's the kind of film that would add a much needed string to the 3D bow.

With the amount invested in 3D, I would be inclined to say it's here to stay, and has got past the fad stage, but it needs all the parties involved to be on the same page if the consumer is to really see the potential IMO.
 

Steve Withers

Reviewer
Large parts of T:DOTM are converted 3D, in fact anything involving a robot is a conversion to make things easier for the effects teams. Some scenes were shot with native 3D cameras and thus actually look quite good but overall I found it to be a massive disappointment.
 

ozsat

Active Member
Does anybody know whether the classic 1950's 3D films are likely to become available in the modern day bluray format?

Films like House of Wax and Creature from the Black Lagoon.
 

Steve Withers

Reviewer
I know some of the 80s 3D movies are being released on 3D Blu-ray but I'd love to get my hands on some of the 50s 3D movies, I'd kill for a 3D Blu-ray of Dial M For Murder.
 

l34052

Well-known Member
Its only my 1st 3d tv but i think ive been converted.

Regular BR films look good as expected however the same film in 3d (to me atleast) just looks more detailed again, not just the obvious pop outs but things in general have a more 'real' look to them.

I really hope the studios start makin more 3d films myself, i'll buy them.
 

logiciel

Moderator

Steve Withers

Reviewer
I hope you're kidding, I hate 2D to 3D conversions that are done for theatrical release movies, I'd rather stick a knitting needle through my eye than watch an on-the-fly 2D to 3D conversion.

Conversions are not real 3D and never will be, the only 3D that counts must be shot with native 3D cameras.

Sorry, rant over :)
 

logiciel

Moderator
How can asking a question be kidding?:confused:
I was looking for information, not giving it.
I agree about films that are converted but sold as 3D.
DMFM wasn't "shot with native 3D cameras" though, was it?:)
 

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