3D and the Long Cut

An interesting follow-up to the Avatar post below – I just came across this post on AMC by John Scalzi, which notes that:

The economics and practicality of 3D aside, I do see one potential artistic benefit of the increased use of 3D, and that is the return of the “long cut.” In Avatar, one of the things James Cameron does is keep his images on screen for long periods of time, cutting down the number of times the viewer’s eye has to refocus, and thus cutting down on eye fatigue. Contrast this with the ethos of Michael Bay, in which cuts happens so fast you’ll miss them if you blink. Bay can get away with that in 2D, but if he does it in 3D I pity the poor theater workers who have to mop up all the exploded heads after the show. Fast cuts are a cheap and easy way to amp up the action, but if you know what you’re doing as a director, longer cuts work just fine, too.

Could 3D mean the end of the fast-cutting style? A return to the sort of fight sequences we used to see in Hong Kong martial arts films, with long takes showing off the skills of the pugilists? I am now slightly drooling at the prospect of a Tony Jaa remake of The Game of Death… in 3D!

As an aside, I’ve noticed that there are very few things worth watching on YouTube’s 3D offering. This post lists 10 videos, and… really that’s about all there is. And they’re mostly tech demos, test footage or snatched clips. Were someone to stick a decent two-minute 3D narrative short on YouTube, they’d get a ton of hits. Hmm… now that gives me an idea…

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