Would a James Bond Movie Work in 3D?
Back in 1962, a new movie hero was born. Facing the eccentric megalomaniac Dr No, Sean Connery blast into movie history as the protagonist of one of the longest-running movie franchises ever made. Over the years, several high-profile actors wore the iconic tuxedo - with more or less success. Over its nearly six decades-long run, the "James Bond" franchise has constantly renewed its vehicle park, finished off several terrorist organizations, mad scientists, spies, criminals, and ninja warriors, the coolest production cars in movie history, and stopped World War III from happening several times. Over time, it successfully transitioned from practical effects to CGI but stopped there, never embracing one of the most controversial innovations in movie technology: 3D.
Cinema in a Nutshell
The movie projector invented by the Lumiére brothers was very primitive by today's standards. Built in 1894, the Cinématographe was used for the first commercial screening of a film in 1895 and was a major sensation at the Paris Exhibition of 1900. In time, the projections improved significantly, adding an audio track, colours, better resolutions, a variety of sizes and formats. Ultimately, around a century after their birth, they became obsolete, being replaced by digital projectors in cinemas. These, along with the ever-improving audio, offered whole new levels of cinema immersion to the public. Adding a third (illusory) dimension to the projection was just the icing on the cake that many moviemakers were quick to embrace, offering what they thought would be an improvement on films.
We could debate on whether 3D indeed improved the overall moviegoing experience or not but this is not the time and the place. Instead, let's ask ourselves: why didn't any Bond movies embrace this technology?
Visuals vs. Story
There are movies that achieve their greatest effects on the viewers through their visuals. These movies are a bit "lighter" when it comes to their stories but they make up for this flaw by taking viewers into a spectacular, impressive, overwhelmingly amazing world, no matter if it's a snowy mountain range, a desert planet or a black hole. This focus on visuals makes these movies perfect to be screened in 3D. In the case of James Bond movies, the filmmakers rarely rely on impressive visuals fo take the story forward - the amazing sceneries only serve as backdrops for the action, and they never steal the show. This is why in most cases, James Bond movies would simply not work in the visual-driven 3D.
Of course, there are individual scenes in most of them that would benefit from 3D conversion - Vulture.com made a list of most of them.
Would a James Bond movie work in 3D? It might - as long as the filmmakers don't forget to focus on the right things. After all, it's not the sceneries we watch James Bond movies for, right?