Can chintzy special effects ruin a movie for you??? - High-Def Digest Forums
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Old 06-29-2009, 09:44 AM
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Default Can chintzy special effects ruin a movie for you???

There was a thread at blu-ray.com that asked if reference PQ/AQ can make up for a bad film. The consensus was that PQ does NOT make up for a bad film or lame story. So, since I personally have an issue with sh!tty effects, I was curious if anyone else had a tough time swallowing cheesey effects, sets, etc, etc even if the film itself is solid.

I guess for me, movies are an escape. I like to get wrapped up in the world of the performances and characters. Its hard to do this when suddenly you are greeted with something that just looks awful. It takes me right out of it, just like misplaced attempts at humor do(thats another issue). Maybe I shouldnt let it bother me so much, but its hard to ignore it as evidence by my posts that harp on older films that simply look like they were shot in someones backyard or whatever.

And, with blu-ray many times the effects stand out even more than they do with DVD so this does pertain to blu-ray. And, the fact that many catalog titles are coming out on blu-ray also makes this an issue I'd like to discuss.

So - If a film is truly great, can you just look away when the cheese pours off the screen or do you just "deal" with it?
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Old 06-29-2009, 09:56 AM
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if used correctly then it won't cause they pull you back into the story. SFX and VFX aren't 1 stroke answers to why films are successful or not!

*cough*transformers 2*cough*
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Old 06-29-2009, 10:00 AM
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Originally Posted by ni9ht_5ta1k3r View Post
if used correctly then it won't cause they pull you back into the story. SFX and VFX aren't 1 stroke answers to why films are successful or not!

*cough*transformers 2*cough*
No doubt...and Xformers 2 is a great examples where effects can NOT make a movie good. Kind of the opposite of what I was asking though.
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Old 06-29-2009, 10:04 AM
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A good story will trump bad fx anyday of the week. IMO
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Old 06-29-2009, 10:20 AM
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A good story will trump bad fx anyday of the week. IMO
Agreed. Look no further than "The Third Man".
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Old 06-29-2009, 02:15 PM
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Originally Posted by RoadLizard View Post
So - If a film is truly great, can you just look away when the cheese pours off the screen or do you just "deal" with it?
I can deal with it. If the writing is great, performances solid and direction engaging, then that's where you'll find the meat and potatoes of film. I cannot allow budgetary concerns, one tool out of most filmmakers' hands, or the reality of time (no one in the '50s had the technical tools or know-how to pull off JURASSIC PARK-style effects; what, should I hate my mother because she didn't know not to put me to sleep on my tummy when I was an infant in the '70s? With the passage of time comes the refinement of skill...) to negate the finer qualities of storytelling. And sometimes, older effects are able to trade veracity for their charm or for being inspired--do we "buy" the reality of a tornado in Dorothy's back field in THE WIZARD OF OZ? Not really, but isn't it jaw-droppingly amazing that they pulled off the effect they did in the '30s?
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Old 06-29-2009, 02:48 PM
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A good story will trump bad fx anyday of the week. IMO
QFT.

An example of a great movie with bad SFX is The Mist. I loved it and was able to look over the SFX.

And great special effects will never save a shitty storyline.

An example of a movie with great special effects and a terrible storyline is Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen.
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Old 06-29-2009, 03:23 PM
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Yes and no. If the status quo throughout the piece is obvious or chintzy effects, then I don't mind (such as watching Star Trek: The Original Series today). They're just byproducts of the period or budget.

If a piece has amazing visual effects, but a single effect is done poorly, it shatters the illusion and sticks out like a sore thumb (see CGI cameo at the end of Wolverine). Those are the ones that really bug me.
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Old 06-29-2009, 03:35 PM
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Originally Posted by GM80 View Post
Yes and no. If the status quo throughout the piece is obvious or chintzy effects, then I don't mind (such as watching Star Trek: The Original Series today). They're just byproducts of the period or budget.

If a piece has amazing visual effects, but a single effect is done poorly, it shatters the illusion and sticks out like a sore thumb (see CGI cameo at the end of Wolverine). Those are the ones that really bug me.
But Wolverine had terrible effects throughout the movie.
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Old 06-29-2009, 03:54 PM
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I can deal with it. If the writing is great, performances solid and direction engaging, then that's where you'll find the meat and potatoes of film. I cannot allow budgetary concerns, one tool out of most filmmakers' hands, or the reality of time (no one in the '50s had the technical tools or know-how to pull off JURASSIC PARK-style effects; what, should I hate my mother because she didn't know not to put me to sleep on my tummy when I was an infant in the '70s? With the passage of time comes the refinement of skill...) to negate the finer qualities of storytelling. And sometimes, older effects are able to trade veracity for their charm or for being inspired--do we "buy" the reality of a tornado in Dorothy's back field in THE WIZARD OF OZ? Not really, but isn't it jaw-droppingly amazing that they pulled off the effect they did in the '30s?
Good points. I can see the issue with era-effects where they just didnt have the technology that they do today. Iguess that makes 2001 A Space Odyssey even MORE amazing because Stanley pulled it off with NO CGI or anything else and it holds up and beats lots of effects used today!
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