The People vs. 3D webisode
posted by nerwall16 on May 21, 2010 at 7:42 am
As a long time Cinema Treasures member, I wanted to share my recent episode of my web series Underbelly on the popular gaming web page screwattack.com.
3D 3D 3D! pokes fun at the 50’s to the current trend on this old fad and takes it a step forward with the help of director Uwe Boll.
Screw Attack(For mature audiences)
“The Robe” was in 3D?
yeah it was one of the last studio backed 3D films before the schlock dominated the market
i wrote and hosted this episode
The Robe was absolutely NOT made in 3-D. 5 minutes of research would give you the correct answer: The Robe was the first release in CinemaScope. Also, why are they wearing red/blue glasses? Almost no theatrical features were shown that way.
a friend of mine has been a projectionist for 43 years and he gave me a list of studio films released at that time in 3D. and those glasses came with the friday the 13th dvd and what i had at my disposal at that time.
“The Robe” was never in 3D and this is bad information. Early CinemaScope ads implied that the effect was almost 3D.
Those blue and red glasses were a feature of most 3D releases in the last century. Schlock always dominated 3D the market.
Of the 50 domestic 3-D features produced in 1953/1954, none were shown in red/blue anaglyph. They were all presented theatrically in dual-strip Polaroid, very similar to the glasses in use today.
Anaglyph conversions of some films (It Came from Outer Space, Creature from the Black Lagoon, The Mad Magician, etc) were created in the 1970’s for re-issue on a single strip of film.
For the record, the ONLY red/blue 3-D releases in the 1950’s were a handful of Lippert shorts and some burlesque shorts.
Newt: You might find the following ACCURATE information about 3-D useful for your next video:
What’s this “we” crap? “We” sat through Smell-o-Vision? “We” sat through the Tingler? You’re at least ten years younger than me, and that stuff was a good 15 years before I was born.
And why didn’t you think of a 3-D skin flick first? Probably because it happened before you were born. At least I was alive when The Stewardesses was shot, although about 15 years too young to see it.
And what’s with the red/green mention? Best as I can tell, the only theatrically released movie that used red/green anaglyph glasses was the 3-D sequences in the 1961 Warners movie The Mask.
I know this is supposed to be for entertainment purposes, but you could have some a modicum of real research, instead of relying on legends incorrectly passed from generation to generation.
3D Movies were “cheesy” exploitation films with lower string talent?
Here’s a partial list of some big stars that appeared in front of the 3-D camera: John Wayne, Rita Hayworth, Kathryn Grayson, Howard Keel, Bob Fosse, Robert Mitchum, Linda Darnell, Jack Palance, Edward G. Robinson, Dean Martin, Jerry Lewis, Jane Russell, Ray Milland, Grace Kelly, Victor Mature, Robert Stack, Jose Ferrer, Vincent Price, Joan Fontaine, Phil Silvers, Randolph Scott, Charles Bronson, Karl Malden, Ernest Borgnine, Rhonda Fleming, Robert Ryan, Lee Marvin, Virginia Mayo, Lee J. Cobb, Fred MacMurray, Barbara Stanwyck, Rock Hudson, etc. Not a shabby list of talent there!
Great directors and cinematographers worked on these films, including John Alton, Raoul Walsh, Douglas Sirk, Roy Baker, George Sidney, William Cameron Menzies, Jack Arnold, Budd Boetticher, Charles Roscher, Hal Wallis, Alfred Hitchcock and many more.
3D Movies of the 1950’s were loaded with gimmicks to show off the process
Not true. For the most part, the filmmakers respected the “stereo window” and did not resort to gimmicks in order to enhance the process. The only studio guilty of excessive exploitation would have been Columbia, and more specifically the William Castle/Sam Katzman productions. However, for every film that was guilty of throwing an over abundance of objects at the camera (FORT TI, CHARGE AT FEATHER RIVER, MAN IN THE DARK, SPOOKS) there were many, many others which utilized great restraint in their use of the process. Check out the superb cinematography on HONDO, SECOND CHANCE, I THE JURY, INFERNO, MISS SADIE THOMPSON, TAZA-SON OF COCHISE and THE GLASS WEB for some excellent examples of the dimensional process.
The often-cited paddleball sequence in HOUSE OF WAX was there for a very specific reason: that sequence was immediately following the intermission point. Director Andre deToth felt the barker was an effective way to bring the audience back into the story. In fact, in the following scene Vincent Price comments, “We won’t need him once we’re established.” How true!
The overuse of gimmicks became commonplace in the 1970’s and 1980’s with movies such as COMIN' AT YA, TREASURE OF THE FOUR CROWNS, FRIDAY THE 13TH 3-D and ANDY WARHOL’S FRANKENSTEIN.
Too many bad 3D movies killed off 3D in 1950s?
Not true. There were exactly 50 movies made (in English) in 3D during the Golden Age of 3D. While there were certainly some bad and mediocre films in this group (ROBOT MONSTER, CAT-WOMEN OF THE MOON, and HANNAH LEE, to name a few), there was also: KISS ME KATE, HOUSE OF WAX, DIAL M FOR MURDER, CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON, and so on. The 3D movies of the Golden Age were no better or worse than any other group of films.
im glad you all enjoyed it so much ahahahah
Not at all, I thought it was pretty lame!
As a been there done that projectionst during the 3-D phase of the 50s I can tell you the biggest problem and probably one of the main reasons 3-D died was the projection. Many pronblems plagued us breakdowns were frequent and people just tired if it all.
Point of fact, in 1954 “The French Line” premeird at the Criterian theatre in NY. It opened in 3-D (JR in 3-D need we say more)but as a result of the projection and print problems the 3-D was dropped and the theatre showed the picture in 2-D a few weeks later.
As somweone wrote there were too many 3-D pictures released, as a result 3-D equpment was improperly installed and there were not enough qualified projectionist to show the picture properly.
You’re right Vito. For the most part, the films of the 1950’s were high quality studio productions with decent budgets, good photography and respectful use of the stereo window. Sorry to burst some bubbles, but AVATAR was not the first quality 3-D film!
i agree with all of ur critiques. truth is the web sight wanted to boast avatar (this episode aired the week it hit dvd) and i wanted to end it with some not so subtle satire about the movie going public. how they are willing to pay more money to get raped by studios and cinema chains.
it was done for comedy sake. i have made other films in the past that celebrate my love for classic theaters and film history. but i hope you guys get this was tongue in cheek….hell i gave uwe boll an oscar
“The French Line” may have had its first NYC showing at the Criterion, but the world premiere of the film was at the Fox Theatre in St. Louis.
Indeed, very disappointed to read that “The Robe” was in 3-D and that red/green glasses were used for those classic 50s releases. Is research a thing of the past?
JAlex I wonder how long the 3-D version of “The French Line” lasted in St. louis before it was swithced to 3-D.
Do not be disapointed cause “The Robe” was never shown in 3-D and those green and red glasses were never used in major atudio releases during the 50s. Perhaps the ads for “The Robe” that read “The modern miracle you see without glasses” confused some.
The Robe was however shown flat in some areas, production had already started when Fox decided that this was to be the first film shot in CinemaScope. As a result filming continued in both scope and flat(1.37) for theaters not yet using Scope projection
THE FRENCH LINE had a very extensive 3-D release throughout the country. However some theaters, like the Criterion in New York, switched to flat near the end of the run.
I should also mention that it is VERY well photographed with zero eyestrain and a minimum (maybe 2) gimmick shots in the whole film. JR in 3D was all it needed!
Vito, the run of “The French Line” at the St. Louis Fox lasted but a week. It opened December 29, 1953 and was preceeded with an ad campaign (both radio and newspaper)that was something else. Such phrases as “J.R. in 3-D: It’ll knock both your eyes out!” and “Jane Russell in 3 Dimensions—and what dimensions!”
The film was not granted a seal; and was condemned by the Legion of Decency. The Catholic Archbishop of St. Louis warned Catholic St. Louisans that to attend the film would be a mortal sin. Miss Russell, who was slated to be at the premiere, backed out when informed the film was not granted a code seal.
The St. Louis nabes that exhibited the film months later opted for the 2D version.
As for my “disappointment”…this was in reference to the video making those mistakes; mistakes which would not have been made with
a modicum of research.
Thanks JAlex, I completly forgot about all the fuss made over JR and “That Dance” as it was called. Jane’s “looking For Trouble” number was filmed mostly in long shot but the church would have none of it and said NO!
I was interested in hearing about Jane not going to the premiere.
I neglected to mention on my original ost about why 3-D died off.
Besides the projection proiblems peole wewere not happy with the glasses which were uncomnforatble in some cases caused headaches.
I think that may be how the CinemScope ad campain of “The Miracle you see without glasses” came about.
The version of “Looking for Trouble” with all the long shots was the re-cut in order to get a Seal. The original 3-D prints had many close-ups of JR during the song, and a spoken part that was racy with her describing the kind of man she wants.
Thanks Bob, that is interesting.
Having seen the picture in 3-D I guess I must have enjoyed those close ups but at my age have no memory of it :)
Jane Russell did not attend the premier because her contract with RKO (and Hughes) was over and she condemned the film before it even opened for having “questionable” and “shocking' camera angles.
The “dance” was deleted from the New York run due to censor trouble and the New York Times said the 3-D film lacked depth.
Having recently seen it TCM, it was a crude, tacky, bad two hour musical all about Jane’s breasts. Since she towers over all the other women in the film, she comes across as a transvestite.
Who said bad films didn’t kill 3-D?
I never care anything for the process.