posted on Dec, 24 2009 @ 03:49 PM
Not that Avatar was BAAAD in 3D, in fact for the most part it was very impressive.. but there were some issues that really need to be sorted out and I
couldn't believe they haven't sorted it out already via say, focus groups or something like that.
(1) The film was waaaay too DARK, compared to the 2D version. I couldn't see any detail on the bark on the trees, or the forest. This greatly
affected the range of colours you could see, the luminosity, it was horrible, knowing that the film has a beautiful range of colour in 2D. Whoever
owned the theatre really needed to ramp the brightness up to max. I can't wait for it to come out in blu-ray on 3D, at least I should be able to set
the brightness in the privacy of my home and not rely on the cinemas to decide how bright is 'bright enough'. It was so dark, you couldn't see the
beauty of those Pterodactyl-like creatures they rode on... they glistened in the 2D version.. in 3D you could barely make out any detail or colour
because it was so dark-and-dim.
(2) There was a LOT of ghosting, choppyness, motion blur on fast action shots. This is inexcusable, and hard for the eyes to follow. It made certain
scenes unwatchable, such as when Jake first encounters the jungle and tries to outrun the larger creatures. In 2D, each shot was perfectly composed
and you could focus your eye on everything in shot, even though there was so much going on. In 3D, it was so dark and choppy and blurry, your eyes
couldn't keep up with what was going on. Also the 'run forrest run' scene when Jake tests out his Avatar body for the first time on the commando
course.. for some reason again it was dark blurry and unwatchable in 3D, yet perfectly clear and sharp in 2D! The ghosting reminded me of trying to
watch a movie on an early LCD tv. In 2010, this shouldn't be happening, especially in a public cinema where people are supposed to be paying to see a
cutting edge breakthrough technology.
(3) The thick black rims of the RealD glasses were always in the way, you could see an annoying black border at all times, obviously not a 'one size
fits all' solution. They are poorly-designed. Ideally, I would redesign them to be wrap-around rather than flat. I would abandon the 'sunglasses'
paradigm and would adopt a 'headband/blindfold' like design that stretches around the head like a tennis headband, with curved lenses stitched into
the lycra-like fabric. It would be more comfortable and more of a true virtual reality experience that would truly put you into the movie itself. You
could still recycle/reuse them and would still be low-cost to manufacture. Again, didn't they do any focus group testing of different designs, prior
to deeming the bulky-framed RealD glasses the best solution? I'm seriously considering taking the lenses of my RealD glasses and making my own set of
'blindfold' glasses and take them with me next time I see a movie in 3D.
(4) Many times you are 'seeing double', or at least the faint outline beside it, which shouldn't be happening if they had the technology exactly
right. You could see it quite visibly on the text of Jake's 'video logs'. Perhaps this is another reason the overall images can be quite ghosty and
blurry.. it's not as sharp as it potentially could be.
(5) The resolution of the image is not as good as 35mm film, not by a long shot. I noticed the overall picture quality lacked fine details, it looked
a bit like trying to watch SD (standard definition) tv on a 60" high definition television, when you try and blow up those details on a huge screen,
the details get washed out and not so clear. I get the feeling the digital format standard is a compromise, and not as good as it could potentially
be. Whether it be higher bitrates or twice the resolution it needs to be, the images are not as sharp as they should be. Extreme closeups of human
faces in 2D looked much clearer than in 3D, it was like watching behind a layer of vaseline-on-glass. However, there were some occasions where the 3D
looked stunning in that regard.. mostly though when there is a dramatic use of contrast in the shot. Not so good when there was already plenty of
natural light in the shot, human faces looked flat and un-3D. I think they could use a much higher resolution and hope to god this won't be the
resolution standard they use for decades to come because it will do an injustice to cinema.
(6) Although it looked INCREDIBLE when you had things in the foreground, so close to you that you felt you could touch them, the resolution looked so
poor. To use a videogame analogy, it was like being affronted by having a 320x240 pixel object with a 1920x1200 picture behind it, like having a
pixelated monster from the videogame DOOM at the front of your vision, with the lush environment of CRYSIS in the background. An illuminated vine will
swing towards you, but it would be so low-res, it looked like a chunk of fluffy string coming at you! Whereas, in real life, the closer something
moves towards you, the more detail you will see on the objects. In this 3D film, the complete opposite happens. Those ferns in the jungle look amazing
at the bottom of the screen, almost as if you are hiding right behind them, but they are so pixelated they look somewhat cut out of cheap
Having said that though, the way that little details such as bubbles and leaves fly towards you and dance around on the screen, look totally wondrous.
The floating jellyfish-like creatures that fly around Jake and dance around before us... it really is a heavenly sight to behold.
And slow-moving scenes that don't involve too much panning or fast action look totally beautiful in 3D, it's like James Cameron was thinking
properly on most of the scenes. But there are other scenes where you are wondering if Cameron really did oversee the movie and 'OK'-it fit for
release in theatres, I mean, did he really sit down in the theatre with RealD glasses, put his hand on heart and say his eye could keep up with all
the fast action scenes with no ghosting? Or that the movie wasn't too dark? If I was a famous film maker, I would be really pissed off if the
cinema-goers couldn't see the bark on the trees or the range of colours on the Pterodactyls..
I'm just frustrated as there is so much potential in what I saw, I could see how good it could be.. it's just been terribly implemented and not
giving people the best possible experience. Potentially, it could be like experiencing virtual reality. It's not as good as it should be...
[edit on 24-12-2009 by RiotComing]
[edit on 24-12-2009 by RiotComing]