From Modern Mythcraft to Magical Surrealism

Movies They Should (and Really Shouldn’t) Make 3D

Avatar launched a 3D craze. The studios are either rethinking all of their upcoming films as 3D, or converting their existing projects in order to lure people away from their HD TVs and back to the theatres (and at higher ticket prices – Bonus!) The most criticized example has been Clash of the Titans, which was never intended to be a 3D film and had crappy 3D effects slapped on it entirely as a money-making afterthought (Cash of the Titans!). This just goes to show that 3D is more than added effects, it is an art form in itself.

Next I fear they will start converting previously released movies into 3D and rereleasing them. I know the studio executives are desperate for my opinion so that they can avoid further mistakes, so here’s my recommendations on which movies should, and shouldn’t, be remade into 3D.

1. WATCHMEN
Let’s just say I don’t want to be there when the kid in the row behind me starts crying and saying “Mommy, I thought that blue thing was going to hit me in the head!”

Verdict: Not Without Pants

2. THE INVISIBLE MAN
Really, what’s the point?

Verdict: Hard to See Why

3. STAR TREK II: THE WRATH OF KAHN
First of all, this is the film where they address the fact that you have to think in 3D during space battles (when the space ships are in the space cloud playing space cat and space mouse). And throw on top of that slimy alien ear roaches? The genesis probe fertilizing a barren planet? Ricardo Montalban’s manly chest thrust out all manly-like? This move screams for 3D. And of course, we’d get to reach out and poke Kirk’s apoplectic face as he builds up to screaming “KAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHNNNN!”

Verdict: It’s Only Logical

4. CUBE 3
No brainer — it’s a movie about moving through a three dimensional trap. And you can call it Cube CubeD.

Verdict: Yes x Yes x Yes

5. ORIGINAL STAR WARS TRILOGY
Isn’t this inevitable? George Lucas feels the need to update and re-release his original movies every time a new technology comes along in order to “bring them closer to his original vision,” better tie into his latest commercial travesty, and of course encourage you to buy yet another copy of the same films. And you know he wouldn’t stop at making it 3D. Oh no. The Ewok song would be changed to a Jonas Brothers tune. Leiah would kiss a superimposed CGI of Jar Jar’s son (her third cousin twice removed – don’t ask), rather than her brother Luke. And the Taun Taun would shoot at Luke first, justifying his riding it to death. Although Lucas may wait until Paisley-Ray Discs come out, or whatever the next tech is that supports 3D at home (and requires you to replace your entire movie library).

Verdict: If You Dumb it Down, it Will Only Become More Powerfully Lame Than You Could Possibly Imagine

6. ALIENS
Face grabbers leaping at you trying to jam their uncircumcised pig-elephant snout down your throat! ’nuff said.

Verdict: YeahhhAAAHHHHAHHH!

7. LORD OF THE RINGS.
Duh.

Verdict: Aye. And again, Duh.

8. SPACEHUNTER: ADVENTURES IN THE FORBIDDEN ZONE
Doh! Too late. This movie was released in 3D – in the 1980’s! It is about a roguish bounty hunter who comes to a mutant planet to rescue three beautiful women who have crashed there and are being enslaved by the bad guy Overdog. Yes, it is as awesome as it sounds, and is most notable as Molly Ringwald’s movie debut.

Verdict: Red Blue 3D Rules, But This Movie Drools

9. FREEJACK
Duck! It’s Mick Jagger’s lips!

Verdict: Would Give No Satisfaction

10. CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY
This could be all the weirdness and wonderfulness in 3D that Alice in Wonderland really wasn’t. And updating it would give Danny Elfman a chance to rethink the Oompah-Loompah songs – I’m sorry Danny, I love you man, but you really blew it on this one.

Verdict: Yeppa Deppa Deppady-Doo.

11. ALTERED STATES
The movie whose name is a recommendation on how to watch it. Making it in 3D seems like the natural evolution for this film on evolution, but somehow I think it would be a bad trip.

Verdict. Yeah man, totally.

12. FIFTH ELEMENT
The best use of bandages ever in a movie, now in 3D! Oh, and there are lots of bright colors and pretty explosions and stuff, not to mention an epic opera solo with the love child of Lady Gaga and the Blue Man Group.

Verdict: Green!

13. THE MATRIX TRILOGY
I’m already convinced that we are really living in a frakked up virtual reality mind prison. So these movies will be even more of a mind trip if they put me virtually within a movie about being inside a virtual world. Whoah, indeed. They could even make it so it’s only 3D when inside the matrix, playing further with the theme of whether a manufactured reality that you believe in can be as or more real than reality.

Verdict: If I say Yes, is it because I choose to, or because I didn’t choose not to?

14. HIGHLANDER 6, BEASTMASTER 4, TRANCERS 7, DUNGEONS AND DRAGONS 3
Sucky in 3D is still sucky.

Verdict: There Should Have Been Only One.

15. THE FORBIDDEN ZONE
Not to be confused with Spacehunter: Adventures in the Forbidden Zone, which was a horrible movie trying to be good, The Forbidden Zone is a good movie because it is so horrible. And it has Danny Elfman, and Herve’ Villechaize (aka Tattoo, Montalban’s sidekick from Fantasy Island), so ties in nicely with the films above. But be warned, this is one messed-up movie. Do not watch with children in the room. Or in the house. Or, in fact, on the same block. In 3D, I suspect this film would qualify as an MK-Ultra brainwashing experiment. It would certainly be hard to get out of your head. Da Pain! Da Pain!

Verdict: Welcome to Fantasy Nihilism

Randy Henderson stays crunchy in milk. His fiction has appeared in Alienskin Magazine, The Harrow, and From the Asylum. He likes milkshakes. He recently graduated from Clarion West. He has a robot monkey army. And most importantly he has won the prestigious “Fantasy Friday Blog for a Beer” award five times (to date). For his genre-related musings, go to his blog.