Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Coraline and 3D come of age

Coraline was produced by Laika, a small stop-motion studio in Portland, OR. Stop-motion is that production process where each frame (think 24 frames per second) is painstakingly arranged and shot, on an average delivering two to three seconds of finished product per day. The crew must either have infinite patience, or suffer from a high rate of mental breakdown. It took eighty-five weeks to shoot this movie on more than fifty sets.

3D is just right for stop motion production, where the models and sets are constructed with microsurgical attention to detail. The 3D aspect draws you into those tiny sets and enhances the lifelikeness of Coraline, her family, and wacky neighbors. And when she stumbles into a parallel world, we tunnel there with her and sense the creepiness escalate as the texture of that world and its characters close in around us.

With Coraline, 3D has moved past the old geeky-spex, gimmicky tradition of the 1950s. Here the technology enhances the storytelling, deepens mood and character, and intensifies the sense of place.

3D is finally coming of age. Over forty 3D movies will be released over the next two years, none more anticipated than Avatar from James Cameron, who has spent years putting together his 3D sci-fi epic film. Previews are expected in cinemas soon. Until then, this tease on YouTube is all we get. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CGs3_1qKl34.

But check out Coraline to see the future of movies, plus what to expect to see on your home TV within the next couple of years.

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