The Lord of the Rings films haven't aged well, have they? NOW INCORPORATING THE RANDOM IRRELEVANT STATEMENT THREAD!

Chat about stuff other than Transformers.
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Prowl1984
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Post by Prowl1984 » Wed Jun 22, 2011 3:41 pm

Special effects be they computer generated or otherwise are always going to look outdated eventually. I'm sure there will be a point where someone trumps Michael Bay and co and causes Transformers to look like a bunch of poorly animated Harry Hausen monsters...ok maybe not that extreme but you get what I mean. I still enjoy the LOTR films, extended and original,and I'm planning to get them on Blu-Ray at some point. They're historic films, they set a new benchmark at the time of their release and I'm sure they'll end up being remembered as classics.
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Post by inflatable dalek » Wed Jun 22, 2011 7:22 pm

I think good design work and well directed effects will always endure, however primitive, especially if the people making the films know how to work within the limitations of the time.

CGI in the Star Wars special editions already looks much worse that the original model work does for example, and how many family films with more advance effects have come, gone and been forgotten in the 70 odd years people have been enjoying The Wizard of Oz?

How well the Bay stuff will stand up in years to come is hard to say as it's hardly universally loved now, but ILM are usually pretty good at making things that stand the test of time. Compare their effects work on the Trek films to any of the ones they didn't work on for starts.
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Post by Auntie Slag » Wed Jun 22, 2011 7:23 pm

Re: Cliffjumper's Youtube IMAX forest fight;

Wow, that really is the best clip of Optimus Prime in any medium for me. It amazes me how some people can give so much stick to the Michael Bay TF films... for my money he absolutely gets what Transformers are all about. He's produced the most entertaining stuff and introduced fresh elements. In fact the only stuff I'm not mad about in both films are:

- the hacker sub-plot from the the 2007 movie
- The twins and;
- The dumbing down of Ron & Judy in RotF

Otherwise they're great.

I fully expect to lapse into frothing convulsions at the frighteningly fast camera cuts and 3 billion miles an hour fight scenes of Dark of the Moon. I want editors to have died making this film. And died happy, knowing that they've made the biggest, dumbest and most fun action movie about big ****-off robots ever.

And Bumblebee marries a bike.

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Post by Cliffjumper » Wed Jun 22, 2011 7:52 pm

inflatable dalek wrote:CGI in the Star Wars special editions already looks much worse that the original model work does for example, and how many family films with more advance effects have come, gone and been forgotten in the 70 odd years people have been enjoying The Wizard of Oz?
Mmmm, the original SW films are the sort of thing I was thinking. Sure, it cost a huge amount of money, but the nature of the models - detailed, well-designed, and done with a careful eye on the limitations of the models. They try what they can do, not just have their best stab at what they can't.

Then you've got stuff like Harryhausen or tokusatsu, where you're not fooled for a second, but it's nicely done and is an artform in itself. Jason and the Argonauts shouldn't make you go "****! Real army of skellingtons!" anymore, it should make you go "****, that's good stop-motion work".
How well the Bay stuff will stand up in years to come is hard to say as it's hardly universally loved now, but ILM are usually pretty good at making things that stand the test of time. Compare their effects work on the Trek films to any of the ones they didn't work on for starts.
I'd say when it really clicks (the Mission City battle, for example) it's going to be timeless, just because I'm not sure how you could actually do something like that any better... There are some odd moments (especially in the first one) where the models can lack a bit of weight, but they largely avoid looking pasted into the screen and there's some pretty decent physics on show... That a lot of it is either shot in either dark or ultra-bright light and that the editing is so frantic helps too; I think like SW they had a pretty good idea what they were and weren't going to be able to pull off.
Auntie Slag wrote:Wow, that really is the best clip of Optimus Prime in any medium for me. It amazes me how some people can give so much stick to the Michael Bay TF films... for my money he absolutely gets what Transformers are all about. He's produced the most entertaining stuff and introduced fresh elements.
I have a lot of time for the films. They're not perfect, but they get a lot of the basics right. Prime is a big one - how long have we been waiting for a Prime who's actually good at stuff? I like the Marvel PM Prime as a character in a dramatic sense, but I like a Prime who can flex his muscles from time to time.
In fact the only stuff I'm not mad about in both films are:

- the hacker sub-plot from the the 2007 movie
- The twins and;
- The dumbing down of Ron & Judy in RotF
I can forgive them the hacker sub-plot as a water-testing exercise, maybe a lingering worry that the robots wouldn't carry the film. I quite like the Twins as comic relief, but did feel they were overexposed in the film and it was a shame they got so much to do at the expense of Sideswipe and Jolt The Volt.

Fully agree on Ron & Judy, though - which I felt was a big shame, as they were brilliant in the first one, where I think they were more popular than everyone was expecting - hence them being given a lot more forced comedy in the second (stoned Judy seemed to go on for ever). Sam's big emotional moment with dad was pretty cool, though.

My biggest problem with ROTF is the structure - with Shanghai, Ravage's raid on NEST and the forest fight all the biggest moments are weighed towards the first half, then the quest bit goes on too long and the final battle isn't quite as good as others in the films have been (notably the relative lack of named Transformers getting much to do, largely focusing on NEST troops battling those clones). It's a strange parallel to TF:TM in that respect.
I fully expect to lapse into frothing convulsions at the frighteningly fast camera cuts and 3 billion miles an hour fight scenes of Dark of the Moon. I want editors to have died making this film. And died happy, making the biggest, dumbest and most fun action movie about big ****-off robots ever.
I am so wired for the film after seeing the trailers. And that's all I'm going to see this time - not even chancing the news thread after some piece of shit spoilt Jetfire for me last time.

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Post by DrSpengler » Wed Jun 22, 2011 7:59 pm

inflatable dalek wrote:How well the Bay stuff will stand up in years to come is hard to say as it's hardly universally loved now, but ILM are usually pretty good at making things that stand the test of time. Compare their effects work on the Trek films to any of the ones they didn't work on for starts.
Have you watched "Jurassic Park" recently? I don't know if it's the sweet surge of nostalgia, but that movie still looks amazing to me. There are moments where the CG work looks outdated, like the scene where we see the apatosauruses for the first time or the inside of the raptor's mouth when its jumping up and trying to bite the kids in the vent shaft, but the t-rex, man. The t-rex.

I think it helped that it was a healthy mix of Stan Winston's practical effects and robots with ILM's then-unheard-of CGI that really helps it endure.

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Post by Wildrider » Wed Jun 22, 2011 8:12 pm

In reference to Jurrasic Park, I agree they stand up well, but both the first and second one benefit from a lot of major set pieces being set at night and in the rain, masks any potential dating of effect quite well.

The daylight scenes, such as the Brontosaurus do look a bit iffy, but considering we in the UK are exposed to dross CG from crap like 'Primeval' and *cough* 'Merlin' and 'Doctor Who' it's easier to admire ILM's craftsmanship.

But budget isn't everything, Stephen Sommers and whatever shit effects house he uses has produced some seriously shonky CG, everything he's made after 'The Mummy' looks so artificial and he's thrown millions at some of those films.

I really enjoy listening to director's commentaries and was recently listening to Guillermo Del Toro on 'Pan's Labyrinth' and it's suprising how much you think isn't CG actually is and how much isn't! I think he digitalised rain and gun shots, but utilised Doug Jones on goat stilts fantastically well. That kind of almost subliminal augmentation of scenes is really admirable and is much more impressive if you don't notice it.

Also saw 'Green Lantern' at the cinema t'other day, knew nothing about it apart from it was undeniably green, sort of a mix of 'Top Gun', 'Superman', 'The Mask' and 'The Last Starfighter', but the CGI was pretty good I thought. By all accounts they pointlessly made a skin tight suit completely CG on Ryan Reynolds, but would he have had to wear a skin tight blue suit for them to digitalise it green? Sounds a bit, erm, pointless?

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Post by DrSpengler » Wed Jun 22, 2011 8:47 pm

Wildrider wrote:In reference to Jurrasic Park, I agree they stand up well, but both the first and second one benefit from a lot of major set pieces being set at night and in the rain, masks any potential dating of effect quite well.

The daylight scenes, such as the Brontosaurus do look a bit iffy, but considering we in the UK are exposed to dross CG from crap like 'Primeval' and *cough* 'Merlin' and 'Doctor Who' it's easier to admire ILM's craftsmanship.
I haven't seen the sequels in ages, but you're definately right in regards to the first one; very dark and rainy film. But even then, I never recognized of those conditions as a means to hide the effects, esecially since they worked so well to create an atmosphere that, I'll admit, scared me when I was 8.

And the raptors in the kitchen sequence is still Grade A stuff. I love the Phil Tippet stop-motion version, too, but for totally different reasons (it's just some cool-looking stop-motion).

In regards to Stephen Sommers, I've never seen a movie of his that I've actually liked. He tends to suffer from the belief that CG should be implemented even where practical effects would look better, just because CG is the new technology.

I can't recall the director's name at the moment, but last years "The Wolfman" remake with Anthony Hopkins really suffered because it chose to do so much in rather iffy CG when make-up and prosthetic effects would have looked a hell of a lot more convincing.

To circle back to "Jurassic Park", I think that flick's a great example of how CG and practical effects can compliment each other like milk and cookies. The aforementioned "Pan's Labyrinth" is another fine example of excellent sooperation between the two.

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Post by inflatable dalek » Thu Jun 23, 2011 6:49 am

Cliffjumper wrote:Mmmm, the original SW films are the sort of thing I was thinking. Sure, it cost a huge amount of money, but the nature of the models - detailed, well-designed, and done with a careful eye on the limitations of the models. They try what they can do, not just have their best stab at what they can't.
Indeed, though it's easy to forget the original Star Wars was fairly low budget. Indeed, as well as all the other things mentioned the limitations of the time, as well as a studio unsure of the whole project, almost certainly helped by preventing Lucas from doing everything he wanted.
Then you've got stuff like Harryhausen or tokusatsu, where you're not fooled for a second, but it's nicely done and is an artform in itself. Jason and the Argonauts shouldn't make you go "****! Real army of skellingtons!" anymore, it should make you go "****, that's good stop-motion work".
I tend to find as well that knowing the limitations they had to work with makes things like a stop motion skeleton having a sword fight with an actor actually even more impressive than anything modern motion capture can do.

Though I'm not some CGI Luddite, I think people who get nostalgic about modelwork tend to forget there was as much cheap and bad stuff as there is in modern films. And TV shows like Babylon 5 and BSG would have been pretty much impossible under the sort of effects techniques used on the 90's Trek shows.

And Jurassic Park does indeed look great still, but that's hardly surprising from the director who made a blow up shark terrifying.
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Post by Clogs » Thu Jun 23, 2011 1:13 pm

Dunno about the films - I prefer the books...

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Post by Cliffjumper » Thu Jun 23, 2011 5:29 pm

Clogs wrote:Dunno about the films - I prefer the books...
I always felt Jean-Pierre Beltoise was among the most undervalued Grand Prix drivers of the 1970s.

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Post by Sixswitch » Thu Jun 23, 2011 7:10 pm

Cliffjumper wrote:I always felt Jean-Pierre Beltoise was among the most undervalued Grand Prix drivers of the 1970s.
It costs 15p for a Wham bar these days...
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Post by inflatable dalek » Thu Jun 23, 2011 7:12 pm

Cliffjumper wrote:I always felt Jean-Pierre Beltoise was among the most undervalued Grand Prix drivers of the 1970s.
He hasn't aged well though, especially compared to modern F1 drivers. Top of the line CGI means Lewis Hamilton is very nearly convincing as a real person.
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Post by Cliffjumper » Thu Jun 23, 2011 8:16 pm

I've always felt any objection to the sinking of the General Belgrano was thoughtless partisan politics and knee-jerk reaction that had little bearing on the reality of the situation.

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Post by Prowl1984 » Thu Jun 23, 2011 10:27 pm

Just waiting for Axe to show up and post some inane "philosophical" bullshit right now...:wtf:
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Post by Summerhayes » Fri Jun 24, 2011 9:48 am

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Post by Jetfire » Wed Jun 29, 2011 4:05 pm

Wildrider wrote:In reference to Jurrasic Park, I agree they stand up well, but both the first and second one benefit from a lot of major set pieces being set at night and in the rain, masks any potential dating of effect quite well.

The daylight scenes, such as the Brontosaurus do look a bit iffy, but considering we in the UK are exposed to dross CG from crap like 'Primeval' and *cough* 'Merlin' and 'Doctor Who' it's easier to admire ILM's craftsmanship.

But budget isn't everything, Stephen Sommers and whatever shit effects house he uses has produced some seriously shonky CG, everything he's made after 'The Mummy' looks so artificial and he's thrown millions at some of those films.
I seem to recall in the 2nd Mummy film he thought the effects at the end where poorly done. The fact is no matter how much money is thrown the effects will be poorer quality if ILM or whomever see it as simply a "job to complete by the summer" or as work of art for a great director or one that actually ahs infulence ove rthe special effects company which I imagine Sommers doesn't.

Im my opinion ILM have produced some of the most varied quality of special effects since the late 90's and to an extent it depends on the director, Spielberg never s gets a shoddy job from them for example, Sommers clearly ahd it phoned in for a few of his.

I really enjoy listening to director's commentaries and was recently listening to Guillermo Del Toro on 'Pan's Labyrinth' and it's suprising how much you think isn't CG actually is and how much isn't! I think he digitalised rain and gun shots, but utilised Doug Jones on goat stilts fantastically well. That kind of almost subliminal augmentation of scenes is really admirable and is much more impressive if you don't notice it.

Also saw 'Green Lantern' at the cinema t'other day, knew nothing about it apart from it was undeniably green, sort of a mix of 'Top Gun', 'Superman', 'The Mask' and 'The Last Starfighter', but the CGI was pretty good I thought. By all accounts they pointlessly made a skin tight suit completely CG on Ryan Reynolds, but would he have had to wear a skin tight blue suit for them to digitalise it green? Sounds a bit, erm, pointless?
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