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    #11
    Senior Member ahalpert's Avatar
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    I basically agree with you about CGI. But, for the sake of arguing, I think that Gravity was both an amazing movie and a pretty convincing CGI environment:



    I think they did a good job in Rogue One recreating a CGI Tarkin, although it doesn't look quite as human as the real person:



    And here's a cool shot from the recent Trek that is mostly spaceshippy but also integrates with people walking around, plus there are surely many fake elements of the set they're on:



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    #12
    Senior Member Batutta's Avatar
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    I was never arguing that CGI is inherently bad, only that some filmmakers abuse it in ways that pull me out of the reality of the film. They still haven't traversed the uncanny valley with human characters. Rogue One would have been better off casting an actor, and same with The Mandalorian (won't spoil the end of season two if you haven't watched it yet). Maybe they'll get there. I've seen stills of synthetic humans that are thoroughly convincing so I'm sure they will. I think it mostly has to do with recreating human movement correctly, which is part of my original complaint. CGI characters and stunt doubles move in ways that still look subtly false to the human eye and that breaks suspension of disbelief, adding an impossibly dynamic camera compounds that. I don't know enough about where CGI animation is at this point and I'm guessing but it might have something to do with still using keyframes and interpolating the movement in between that causes an unnatural fluidity.
    "Money doesn't make films...You just do it and take the initiative." - Werner Herzog


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    #13
    Senior Member ahalpert's Avatar
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    Yeah, I have no idea why CGI movement looks fake. But as humans, we are certainly hyper-attuned to the movement and expression of other humans, and that will be the last thing to fool us. I looked at a compilation of the most convincing CGI in movies on youtube, and they were all cases of using real footage and compositing it into the frame, either in the background or to replace a stunt man's face with the real actor. I think the problem really arises when you're creating something new out of whole cloth.

    The basic issue with overuse/abuse of CGI just comes down to good taste IMO. Directors can abuse any technique or device - guns/shooting, swearing, fast cutting... But CGI certainly creates a massive opportunity and temptation to go overboard.

    The larger issue with how superhero movies are made, IMO, has a lot to do with the audience and having a director who thinks like that audience. They're primarily children's films, or at least have to be accessible to children. So does the Star Trek I watch, but I think that the way people watch movies has evolved.

    An acquaintance of mine is a huge MCU fan and every time I'm at his house, he has a superhero movie playing in the background. Every now and then, he'll interrupt our conversation to point out some action that's taking place. And of course, he's texting all the while. Sometimes, he'll be playing video games on a separate TV simultaneously. So, in that context, I think that a 4-hour hyperbolic Justice League makes perfect sense. If it's just kind of background music anyway, it benefits from being super-long and hyperactive. It's only going to occasionally get your attention, anyway. And if people are texting while they're driving, you can believe that they're doing it in movie theaters as well. I bet there are few viewers in the target audience who see every frame of the film.

    And lastly, these movies seem to succeed financially more on the basis of what's advertised within than the actual viewing experience. Like JJ Abrams' star wars reboot - he gave audiences what they THOUGHT they wanted, bringing back Han and the Millennium Falcon, etc. But I think he twisted the story in a knot trying to fit all that in and set it at the appropriate time for how much Ford/Fisher had aged instead of giving himself a blank slate to continue the story however he saw fit. And the same with superhero movies - you can advertise the stars included, the characters featured, the battles represented, whatever exciting plot points happen. That's how you sell tickets/subscriptions, and the only tentpole productions that really need to succeed on a narrative level are original stories.


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    #14
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    CGI works best when it is grounded by real objects / people in the camera.

    Regarding the Snyder Cut... I watched it Thursday night and I enjoyed it a lot, though it has all of the same fundamental structural problems as the Theatrical Cut with some major improvements (better villains, more Flash personality, more Cyborg personality... though he is a little corny). What I find really odd is that the Snyder Cut is actually more funny & lighthearted than the Theatrical Cut, which is the opposite of what I was expecting. At times it seems more like a television series compressed down into a 4 hour movie than a theatrical movie. I can see why they were afraid of releasing it in theaters, even though I ultimately liked it more than the Theatrical Cut. The 1.33 aspect ratio is a mixed bag. At times it reminds you of classic films or comic-book style frames, but then at other times it reminds you of 90s era TV shows or full-frame VHS pan-&-scans of the Joel Schumacher Batman films...


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    #15
    Senior Member ahalpert's Avatar
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    .
    www.VideoAbe.com

    "Captain, the most elementary and valuable statement in science, the beginning of wisdom, is 'I do not know.'" - Lt. Cmdr. Data


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    I loved it! huge difference with previous movie. Discretion for director is a real game changer.


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    #17
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    On a related note, MK is coming out this Friday.

    Similar example of what a remake or a proper revision can do for a franchise (or the fans).

    Not for everyone as the heavy violence - as it was always naturally intended - makes the John Wicks look mild, but it might be the first movie I'll see in a theater in 10 years (yeah, I know) because of my 90s obsession.

    First 7 minutes...

    Also a perfect example of the LF not looking that good! (IMO)



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    #18
    Senior Member Run&Gun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NorBro View Post
    On a related note, MK is coming out this Friday.

    Similar example of what a remake or a proper revision can do for a franchise (or the fans).

    Not for everyone as the heavy violence - as it was always naturally intended - makes the John Wicks look mild, but it might be the first movie I'll see in a theater in 10 years (yeah, I know) because of my 90s obsession.

    First 7 minutes...

    Also a perfect example of the LF not looking that good! (IMO)

    I streamed the original a few days ago(never saw all of it, before). Lord, it was the epitome of a cheesy, bad, "B" action/martial arts flick with poor(even for the time) SFX/VXF.

    I will watch the new version(on HBOMax on my 120" screen at home) and have higher expectations.


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    #19
    Senior Member ahalpert's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NorBro View Post
    On a related note, MK is coming out this Friday.

    Similar example of what a remake or a proper revision can do for a franchise (or the fans).

    Not for everyone as the heavy violence - as it was always naturally intended - makes the John Wicks look mild, but it might be the first movie I'll see in a theater in 10 years (yeah, I know) because of my 90s obsession.

    First 7 minutes...

    Also a perfect example of the LF not looking that good! (IMO)

    I have fond memories of the original. But of course, everything looks different through a child's eyes.

    Why do you think the LF doesn't look that good? The whole thing looks very pretty to me. and those lenses...

    My big problem with it is the editing. The very beginning has all this unnecessary, awkward editing. But then once you get to the fight scene, the choices are much better motivated and feel more seamless. and, ironically, the tempo of montage is more subdued once the fighting starts for everything but the stabby shots. Fake ass looking blood though

    The main guy there definitely has some toshiro mifune energy


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    #20
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    I really don't like the subtle grading, and I think that bokeh is so distracting in the beginning (that's obviously not the camera).

    I thought the editing was perfectly fine though. And some of the shots are really awesome (like the slow-motion water spilling out of the buckets as he runs away from the camera which is dollying backwards).

    Two main guys there; Scorpion and Sub-Zero.


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