These days, Hollywood is eager to convert just about any old movie to 3D in hopes of re-releasing it to theaters and milking it for a few extra bucks. However, it seems to us that some films just plain wouldn’t be appropriate for the 3D treatment. In today’s Roundtable, we unleash some of our worst ideas for movies that really shouldn’t ever come at ya’ in 3D.
Who’s got trouble? Well, we’ll all be in trouble if Warner Bros. ever decides that ‘Casablanca‘ needs the 3D treatment. We’ve already gone through the agony of Ted Turner colorizing the classic back in the late 1980s. Can you imagine the outrage toward Warner if the studio tried to tinker with the film just to rake in a few extra dollars? It would be the end of a beautiful friendship. “Here’s looking at you, kid… in 3D!”
The French Connection III-D
All the talk of going back to classics like ‘Taxi Driver’ and converting them to 3D seems utterly insane to me, and when I think “classic” and “insane,” I think Friedkin. Remember when William Friedkin, notorious madman of the movies, went and turned ‘The French Connection‘ into a recolored Blu-ray nightmare, then pretended it was all a misunderstanding, before the remastered Blu-ray quietly slipped onto store shelves a few years later? That seemed like typical Friedkin, but I’d like to see him kick the craziness up a notch or two. I’m talking a RE-remastered edition converted to 3D, with new Jabba-style bonus footage shot and spliced into that puppy, and a top-to-bottom teal and orange recoloring job thrown in for good measure. That would be an amazing achievement in insanity.
M. Enois Duarte
If we’re going purely by how sad the film is, then maybe ‘The Champ’ or ‘Sophie’s Choice’ would be really weird to watch in 3D. But one film that I think might have potential, yet be grossly inappropriate due to its subject matter, is Lars von Trier’s gut-wrenching drama ‘Dancer in the Dark‘. Björk’s fantastical daydream and musical hallucinations might look great in 3D, but the story about a single mother struggling in 1960s Washington is emotionally draining and downright agonizing. The musical motifs might work and look great in 3D, yet it seems somewhat tasteless to watch it as such. I’m sticking with 2D on this one.
Adam Tyner (DVDTalk)
‘You’ve Got Mail‘: In love online and in 3D. Think about it! All the romance, all the laughs, and in all three dimensions.
[Ed.: That's two more dimensions than any of the characters in the movie have. -JZ]
‘Boogie Nights‘ was on IFC the other night. I watched a bit of it, and then thought about this week’s Roundtable. Imagine ‘Boogie Nights’ in 3D. How awkward would that be? Although, I have to admit that the famous tracking shot of Bill Macy walking into the party would probably look pretty cool with some added depth. And throwing 3D on Heather Graham’s mammaries might a also be a good idea. Seeing sweaty John C. Reilly and Phillip Seymour Hoffman popping off the screen? Not so much. Then we’d get to that final scene, when Whalberg unveils his giant prosthetic manhood. Would people be reaching out to touch it? Would that be the equivalent of having a spear thrown at your face in a 3D movie? Ah, who am I kidding? ‘Boogie Nights’ was made for 3D!
Finally, Andy Warhol’s 1964 masterpiece ‘Empire‘ can be seen in three vivid dimensions! Delight your friends with this 8-hour, 5-minute film that consists of only one slow motion shot of the Empire State Building! Forget extraneous factors like plot, character or action of any kind! In glorious 3D, it’s like you’re really outside the Empire State Building… staring at it… for eight hours.
Although I would wager money on most of Chris Nolan’s films being converted to 3D the instant he’s presumed dead, a worst case scenario for me would be ‘Grave of the Fireflies‘ being converted to 3D. As touchingly depressing as I find the film’s innocent child-crushing content, the idea of someone marketing a 3D conversion as a way to enhance that film’s content depresses me in a not-so-touching manner. “In Grave of the Fireflies 3D, the story of two children in war finally has the depth that only 3D can add. Make sure that you experience this movie in explosive 3D the first time and every time.”
After Mel Gibson’s career suicide, my pick might not be all that far of a stretch. We’ve seen other filmmakers reissue movies when they have nothing left to do. (George Lucas, anyone?) What if Gibson decided to do the same and give ‘The Passion of the Christ‘ a 3D re-release just before kicking off pre-production for ‘Braveheart 2: The Revenge’? Whips could crack out of the silver screen. He could put into practice Ang Lee’s alternating aspect ratios from ‘Life of Pi’ so that the cross protrudes into the black bars. If you think about the raindrops falling in the end, it’s almost like he planned for ‘The Passion’ to get a 3D transfer. The more I think about it, the more I want it!
A Marquis de Sade story adapted into a film so grotesque that the director, Pier Paolo Pasolini, was brutally murdered because of this movie. ‘Salo: Or the 120 Days of Sodom‘ takes place in Nazi occupied Italy where four wealthy men all make a pact to marry each other’s daughters. As a bachelor party of sorts, they kidnap 18 boys and girls and keep them locked in a large house where four older prostitutes discuss different acts of perversion, to which the men sadistically perform these atrocities on each boy and girl. These acts involve feces, blood, rape, extreme torture, death and everything in between. This is one of the most difficult films to watch and is the perfect candidate to get the 3D treatment. The depth of its depravity will have literal depth!
Now that he’s set a precedent with ‘Jurassic Park 3D’, it’s time for Steven Spielberg to convert all of his old movies to 3D. You might think that ‘Close Encounters’ or ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark’ would be natural fits (imagine that boulder rolling at you in 3D!), but no, I suggest that he go straight for ‘Schindler’s List‘. Nothing will put the Holocaust more in-your-face than watching Amon Goeth (Ralph Fiennes) murder concentration camp inmates in visceral 3D! Tasteless? Perhaps, but since when has good taste ever been a requirement for blockbuster cinema?
There’s just one problem: How do you recolor a black & white movie into teal & orange?
Tell us in the Comments about the movies you think least deserve 3D-ification.
Tags: 3D, Boogie Nights, Casablanca, French Connection, Grave of the Fireflies, Lars von Trier, Mel Gibson, Passion of the Christ, Schindler's List, Steven Spielberg, Studio Ghibli, Weekend Roundtable