Back in 2005 when Jim Jannard took off his brightly colored and presumably shiny Oakley CEO hat and set out to start a revolution in digital cinema, most of us scoffed, writing off his intentions of building a 4K tapeless camera at an “affordable” price point as the ludicrous ravings of a millionaire seeking his extra 15 minutes. We ate our words a year ago, at NAB 2007, as the first Red Camera footage was put on display in a short film by mega-director Peter Jackson. As the year went by, and the fledgling company started to ship the camera in small doses, again, we started to feel the rumblings of a revolution as Stephen Soderbergh proclaimed his love for the new format.
But now it’s NAB 2008. So you’d think maybe this Red thing would pick up and start getting adopted.
Nah. Read on…
Don’t be an idiot. Go see Beowulf. See it on the biggest flippin’ 3D screen you can find. For those of you fortunate enough to live in the center of the universe, that means the Lowes IMAX at 68th and Broadway.
You have to see this move in the theater. It’s that simple.
Robert Zemeckis, a graduate of the Steven Spielberg School of Showmanship, has put together a rather enticing reason NOT to wait for the DVD. In the end, that’s all that this film amounts to, but still, that’s quite a feat. It has the thrills for both the action/fantasy fan and the cinÃ©aste trying to follow modern progressions in filmmaking. This is the film of the future, but we’re not quite there yet. The technology is in its infancy, and it is exciting to see the possibilities of it, even if the intended effect falls flat on its face right now.
As for story, writers Roger Avary and Neil Gaiman have put together a solid, if foolish, script. They’re a good match: Mr. Gaiman being a modern representative of fantasy intellectualism, himself turning into the 21st Century J.R.R. Tolkien; and Mr. Avary having become Hollywood’s goto man for pulpy comic-booky stories, specifically in the realm of video game adaptations. The narrative is tight enough, and the tone matches with cartoonish form of the film rather nicely. In another director’s hands, perhaps pure gold could have been spun out. Read on…