The Lion King? Star Wars? Titanic? Top Gun? It seems as if the new thing for Hollywood is to take an old movie, turn it into 3D and re-release it in theaters for a whole new audience to… I don’t know, pay for. But why stop with those movies? Here are ten more movies that demand a 3D revival.
Terminator 2: Judgment Day
3D works best, I think, for big action movies that are unafraid to go completely over the top in terms of explosions, special effects and eye candy. No surprise, then, that I’m convinced that James Cameron’s second Terminator movie – which fits that bill so completely that it could almost have been created for that very purpose – would be an ideal candidate for translating into 3D. And if Cameron, who masterminded the format’s highpoint, Avatar, was involved in taking it beyond the 2D version it is now…? All the better.
2001: A Space Odyssey
Of course, if you’re not going to use 3D for explosions and life-and-death stakes, then why not use it for one of cinema’s most well-known pieces of science fiction psychedelia? Even before the end-of-movie colorful freakout, there’s a lot of Stanley Kubrick’s 1968 masterpiece that would appreciate the chance to stretch into a different visual dimension (the scenes aboard the PanAm Space Plane, introducing the future, in particular, could look wonderful in 3D), but let’s face it: That final sequence, as Dave transcends existence as we know it thanks to the Monolith would blow your mind in 3D.
Don’t get me wrong, I know that The Lion King is a guaranteed Disney moneymaker to translate into 3D, but if there’s one animated Disney movie that needs to be in 3D, it’s Fantasia, with its different styles and more experimental moments. It’s one thing to see Timon and Pumbaa monkey around right in front of your eyes, but wouldn’t it be much more impressive to see “The Rite of Spring” offer up 3D dinosaurs and the evolution of life on Earth? Exactly.
Six words: John. Hurt’s. Chest. Monster. In. 3D. Okay, some more words: 3D could add a lot to the claustrophobic experience of the first movie in the long-running monster movie cycle, not just in emphasizing the Nostromo as an environment, but also the enormous cavern where the alien’s eggs are initially discovered. But, really, it’s just about the idea of watching an alien burst through John Hurt’s chest in 3D. Can you really blame me?
And talking of Ridley Scott, his 1982 masterpiece was almost as successful as an immersive visual experience as it was a narrative noir tale, and that’s something that could only be improved by a smart, subtle use of 3D. Imagine a movie that didn’t feel the need to beat you over the head with its use of 3D, but instead used it very sparingly, making each use – The famous scene where the car flies past the giant advertising screen, for example – that much more impactful. Also, it’s not as if anyone involved with Blade Runner would be that upset with the idea of creating yet another new version…
If nothing else, The Matrix was an astonishing movie from a visual effects standpoint. How much more of an overwhelming experience could it be if 3D was introduced into the mix? Bullet-time scenes would get more intense, the weird-green-binary-code visuals could become more ridiculous, and we could finally feel as if Lawrence Fishburne is offering us the red or blue pills.
There are many, many Arnold movies that could have gone on this list – There’s already another one on here – but one scene in particular won Total Recall‘s place on here: Where the old woman’s head splits open to reveal Arnold underneath. Sure, it’d be fun to see Arnold almost explode from the lack of atmosphere in 3 dimensions as well, and who wouldn’t want to see his 3D x-ray run across the screen, but for some reason, that scene where the head splits open is something that I really, really have to see in 3D at some point. Please?
Back To The Future Part II
Yes, the first film is better. But it’s the second installment, when Marty and Doc head to a particularly gimmick-filled future, complete with floating hoverboards and holographic sharks jumping from movie theaters, that would be best-positioned to take advantage of the 3D format. And, let’s be honest, there would be something oddly thematically fitting, in a goofy way, in having the “future” be in 3D as opposed to the trips to the past – although allowing Doc and Marty revisit their own pasts in 3D as they snake back through the events of the first film could be well worth watching, as well.
E.T. The Extra Terrestrial
It’s not an action movie as such, but there’s something about Steven Spielberg’s E.T. that feels that it would work in 3D. Maybe it’s because I really want to feel as if that closet full of soft toys is all around me, or maybe it’s that there’s something about the 3D format that feels as if it appeals to children especially, and should therefore be used in what might be one of the best children’s movies ever made. If nothing else, imagine how wonderful the scene where Elliot and E.T. fly in front of the moon could be in 3D.
Raiders of The Lost Ark
If there was ever any scene in cinema history that was made for 3D without even the director realizing it, it’s the giant rock rolling down the hill and Indiana Jones running from it. Never mind the many other moments that would also work in 3D (The airplane circling above Indy and the Nazi as they fight? The spirits released from the Ark at the climax? Come on), just close your eyes and imagine how wonderful and just plain right it would be to see that rock almost crush Indiana as he runs out towards us in three dimensions.
…That’s my ten. But which movies have I missed? Use the comments to make your case for which movies would be helped by gaining an extra dimension, and keep your fingers crossed that someone in Hollywood is paying attention.