Dear reader, I have a secret to share with you. 3-D movies are lost on me. I’ve tried seeing them with my regular glasses under the 3-D set, and with my contacts. No dice. After 3 strabismus surgeries at the ages of 5, 12, and 26, my left eye looks normal, and I can see pretty well with it, but it seems that a lingering weakness means it doesn’t work in tandem with my right, making 3-D movies a lesson in frustration.
At first I wondered if I expected too much. I remember as a kid seeing a commercial for a 3-D movie where the characters jumped out of the screen at the viewers. “Sign me up for that!”, I thought, expecting my favourite monsters to shake me in my very seat. My chance would come several years later with a special T.V. movie (the nature of which I can’t seem to recall, but my sister insists it was probably pure cheese). The local paper provided the 3-D glasses. I was so excited! My sister and I bought a couple of newspapers for our glasses, sat in front of the T.V. and waited for the spectacle to start. It went something like this:
Sis: “Oh cool!”
Sis: “Don’t you see it?”
Pixie: “I see one red lens and one blue lens.”
Sis: “Oh….”(10 minutes later)”How ’bout now?”
Pixie: “Red lens. Blue Lens.”
Sis: “Close your left eye!”
Pixie: “Blue lens.”
This went on for a few more minutes, with more attempted adjustments, until we dissolved into giggles. Of course the quality was not that great in terms of televisions and 3-D glasses in the 80’s, but for most people with mostly normal vision, they got the gist of the effect. Me, not so much. But I never stopped trying.
Case in point: the blockbuster Avatar. I went with my childhood friend, Big Ray (yes, he really is big. Like, 6’7 big), when it was released, and the theatre was packed. I must admit, as we scoured the theatre for seats, I noticed the looks on people’s faces. They said quite clearly, “Please make the giant sit somewhere other than in front of me.” For us, those seats were almost in the front row. Not the greatest seats, but I hoped our proximity to the screen would make something happen. Craning our necks up, way up, our supposedly fresh 3-D glasses perched on our noses, Big Ray snickered, his large hand patting my head sympathetically as I muttered, “I don’t see it. Are the tails 3-D too?” I actually loved that movie, and saw it again minus the 3-D anxiety.
More recently, I went to see Iron Man 3 with my sis. We got the movie times wrong and ended up going to the 3-D showing. Since there were fewer people around, I didn’t mind. We got our pink-eye, I mean, 3-D glasses and I prepared to maybe see something this time. Robert Downey Jr. looked like he might have been not-so-flat, but I couldn’t be sure. And all those Iron Man suits flitting around could have looked like they were coming at me, but I wasn’t going to bet on it. The movie itself was o.k. but a tad too long. I only wanted to see it because I love Don Cheadle. The others I’m indifferent about, except for Sir Ben Kingsley, who looks like my sweet Uncle Merv. Sir Ben was pretty brilliant, and I would recommend the film for his character the Mandarin alone. Guy Pearce also made a great bad guy, and his character, Aldrich Killian was revolting until he turned bad. You see, I’ve noticed Guy has a habit of picking really unsavoury looking people to portray, mostly covered in dirt. This time around, he redeems himself and cleans up real nice-like. But I digress…
To sum things up, dear reader, if you’ve ever wonder why I don’t review 3-D movies here, it’s because of my left eye. After several attempts, I’ve accepted that the effect is totally lost on me due to separate depth perceptions. It helped when I did makeup though. One eye for close up and one eye for far away somehow made things more symmetrical. Another good thing about my left eye is that I can see around corners with it (just kidding…well, kind of…), and my vision is generally pretty good with glasses and contacts, so I can’t really complain. I didn’t really like wearing those 3-D glasses anyway. I’m sure there are health and safety laws in place that prevents the spread of gross things like pink eye, but I have no idea where those glasses have been. This thought, along with all the other insane ones that take up residence in my pixie mind, haunts me. So for now, I will have to take your word for it, unless you want to describe your 3-D experience through interpretive dance. I’m open to that too.