Converting movies into 3D is pointless
Jurassic Park has been rereleased in 3D to mark the film's 20th anniversary.
It is a glorious film, perhaps the perfect blockbuster adventure movie. It has only grown in stature over the two decades since those beautifully realised dinosaurs roared on to the screen.
So, to be clear, there is no doubting that Jurassic Park is a landmark film - a popular masterpiece, in fact.
My affection for the film was only reconfirmed when I went to see the 3D conversion last night. It's such a great film that it was able to transcend the distracting effects of the 3D conversion.
Let's face it, 3D is rubbish and pointless. It makes films gloomy, it's distracting, slightly headache-inducing, doesn't add anything to a film, miniaturises everything and takes you out of the film. Like I said, rubbish.
And when you take a film shot in 2D and convert it into 3D the results are mixed at best. When it's done badly - I'm looking at you Clash of the Titans - the results are hall-of-mirrors wonkyland. It makes you feel queasy. When it's done well, and admittedly the Jurassic Park conversion is as good as it is going to get, the results are still slightly wonky. Your brain can kind of sense that the dimensions are artificial. In Jurassic Park, Sam Neill's nose looked too pointy in certain scenes. There was no texture to surfaces, they were just three-dimensional planes added by a computer. It didn't make me feel queasy, but I could instinctively smell bulls**t. Or should I say dino doodoo.
But, I have a larger problem with converting this glorious movie into 3D. What, precisely, is the point of converting older films into 3D? It's an honest question; I am genuinely perplexed. The only possible reason I can think of converting Jurassic Park into 3D is money. But, I suspect Steven Spielberg doesn't need the money and is perhaps careful about how his films and his legacy are handled. So, why did he let Jurassic Park get converted into 3D and rereleased? The only artistic reason I can think of for releasing Jurassic Park in 3D is to introduce a new generation to its marvellous charms. To lure the kids in with a novelty tweak.
A friend said they thought the 3D was a good idea becuase it fitted well with the theme park ride feel of the whole movie. Jurassic Park, after all, is a film that ponders the value of flashy showmanship, while all the time delivering just that by the truckload. And what says flashy showmanship more than 3D? A novelty, but ultimately hollow, sensation.
Some critics have got very serious about converting old films into 3D, comparing the process to the colourisation of classic black and white movies like Casablanca in the 1980s. But, that is taking things a bit far. The Jurassic Park conversion is not disrespectful, it's just pointless. It adds nothing to the moviegoing experience.
This is not a moustache on the Mona Lisa, this is tits on a bull. Or should I say tits on a T-Rex?
In fact, when watching Jurassic Park last night, I found myself shutting one eye to eliminate the 3D effect. I also tried flipping my glasses round in the hope it would cancel out the 3D. It didn't work. At one point, I held the glasses to my eyes in reverse and found that all the bits that were supposed to be far away were close and all the things that were supposed to be close were far away. It looked very odd. I think this strange behaviour means that I would rather have watched Jurassic Park in its original 2D. The way it was made. The way it should be watched.
So, in short, I don't think they should convert 2D films into 3D. It's pointless, distracting and a waste of time.
What do you think? Are 3D conversions pointless? Are there any classic films you would like to see in 3D? Post below.