Random header image... Refresh for more!

I Dislike 3D Movies

There.  I said it.  I dislike 3D movies.

I have become very frustrated lately that whenever we want to see a popular movie, our choices are either to see it at an inconvenient time (10 pm?) or to see the 3D version.  The latest incident came with the Hobbit — we wanted to take the kids to see the movie in the theater.  We didn’t want to see the 3D version.  So our choices were to take them way past their bedtime or to see it in the morning at the smelly theater inside the cinema. (It’s the theater that no one likes, so they stick all the non-3D movies inside.)  We opted for the smelly theater.  We felt like Sneetches without stars while the 3D Sneetches had their weiner roast in the better theater, laughing and spilling their popcorn as wargs tore off the screen right at them.

I’m actually just assuming that was one of the 3D effects.  It sounds like it would be a 3D effect.

I like the idea of 3D movies, but I get a headache from the glasses.  It is partly because the glasses need to go over my existing glasses, and the 3D glasses rest against my nose.  Things touching my nose make me feel cross-eyed, and the feeling doesn’t end when I remove the glasses.  In fact, I feel cross-eyed right now just writing about this.

So it’s a fun idea that gives me a headache in practice.  But I seem to be the only person with this problem.  And the solution people offer me is to put on anti-3D glasses.  Which are still glasses over my glasses, which touch my nose and give me a headache.  And then beyond that, sometimes I just want to sit in my seat in the theater and zone out.  I don’t want to feel as if I’m dodging wargs or having spaceships fly at my face.  Sometimes I just want to sit in a theater and know I’m in a theater, hanging out with all these other moviegoers who are there for the story.

I’m sort of hoping that the 3D fad ends soon.  Though I fear that our days of watching movies in the movie theater may be numbered.

How do you feel about 3D movies?  Like them or avoid them?


1 Susan Jett { 05.12.13 at 7:36 am }

Hate. Hate hate hate 3d movies. I don’t wear glasses, but I have astigmatism, and it seems to provoke the same headachy, sick-making feeling in me. Plus, yeah–I don’t WANT my movies to be so real. I can’t put a movie down if it gets too intense, the way I can (and DO) with books, so why would I want to immerse myself that way in a high-tension movie? I’m there to relax! And so I refuse to see movies if I can’t see them in normal-D, which means that often I just wait for the DVD or for it to show up on Netflix.

And I agree. I wish that the fad would just go away, but hearing that Gatsby is filmed in 3D makes me despair of that ever being the case…

2 Tiara { 05.12.13 at 8:05 am }

You are not the only one that feels that way about the 3D glasses! I started feeling cross eyed as soon as I read your title! I too have to put those glasses over my own & it drives me bonkers plus I get motion sick too!!

3 Karen Sanders { 05.12.13 at 8:12 am }

I hate them. It’s too much everything.

4 Sara { 05.12.13 at 8:23 am }

I refuse to go to 3D movies, they give me a horrible headache and make me feel sick. I prefer to wait for movies to come out on DVD, I am never really comfortable in a movie theater.

5 Eric Schwartzman { 05.12.13 at 8:44 am }

As long as the studios see that they can get an extra $3 on top of the already crazy ticket prices the “fad” will continue. At this point I always buy the discounted movie passes at Costco or take my kids to the showings before Noon. Too expensive otherwise.

6 NotTheMama { 05.12.13 at 9:43 am }

I can’t tolerate 3D for long! I think it is a matter of the huge difference between my eyes. My right eye is near perfect, but my left eye is terrible. I always feel like I have double vision for a while after I take 3D glasses off.

7 loribeth { 05.12.13 at 9:48 am }

Uh oh. I have never been to a 3-D movie because I’ve heard too many comments along the lines of the ones here. But we were planning today to go see “The Great Gatsby” in 3D. To see it in 2D would mean a half-hour drive to the closest theatre that’s showing a 2D version, and seeing at either 10:15 a.m. or 2 p.m., which is a little later than we like to go on Sunday afternoons. Wish me luck…!

8 Pepper { 05.12.13 at 10:03 am }

I don’t love them. They put me on edge, waiting for something to jump out at me, which entirely defeats the purpose of relaxing in a movie!

9 delenn { 05.12.13 at 11:19 am }

To much money, unneeded and over used. Done well, it can be good. Generally, we don not do them.

10 Betty M { 05.12.13 at 11:43 am }

I’ve never been to one as movie going has gone way down my list since children as I refuse to fork out a fortune for tickets and find myself asleep half way through. Anyway I dislike the idea of glasses over my glasses. My nephew has an issue with his eyes and just can’t process the 3D so I dislike everyone being compelled to watch in 3d because there must be plenty of people like him.

11 annettek { 05.12.13 at 12:04 pm }

I with you! My son and I both hate 3D movies so we’re very lucky our local theater has a good number of show times for the 2D versions.

12 Catwoman73 { 05.12.13 at 12:54 pm }

I don’t entirely mind them, though I hate seeing old movies getting re-released in 3D. What a money grab…. greedy bastards…

13 Sadie { 05.12.13 at 1:27 pm }

Hate! And I also hate how inconvenient it has become for those of us who want to skip this technological ‘advance’ to see the movies we choose. The fact is, in neurological terms your brain catches on to the trick after the first 30 minutes or so, so it’s a giant, costly hoax anyway.

14 Brid { 05.12.13 at 1:32 pm }

Yes, terrible 3D! I have a hard time going to the movies anyhow…with prices and the filth and long lines of horrible public. Jack likes them quite a bit.
I went to a Seinfeld show a few weeks back and he joked about how the theatres rip everyone off… ironically, for me and my friend to go to his one-hour show, it was quite a bit more than TWICE what we would pay for me, Jim, and Jack to go to a movie. Also, I just discovered that I have Scene points on my debit card that have accumulated and I have 19 free movies. Not bad.

15 GeekChic { 05.12.13 at 2:57 pm }

I can only stand 3D for the amount of time a Disney ride lasts. I’m good with them there, but at a movie (or even a TV show) I always end up with a migraine. I wish I could like it (I do have fun on the Disney rides) – but I can’t.

You might have more luck with the latest generation 3D televisions that are coming out of Japan. They don’t require glasses to get the effect. I don’t know if they will trigger my migraines as I’ve never sat in front of one long enough.

16 persnickety { 05.12.13 at 4:54 pm }

Hate them.
I think one of the things that annoys me the most is that the 3D effects generally add very little to the story, the only movie I have seen (and it was 2D) where I thought that 3 D would add something was Avatar, when they are flying through the floating islands. And even all it adds is pretty, not story

17 persnickety { 05.12.13 at 4:54 pm }

Hate them.
I think one of the things that annoys me the most is that the 3D effects generally add very little to the story, the only movie I have seen (and it was 2D) where I thought that 3 D would add something was Avatar, when they are flying through the floating islands. And even then all it adds is pretty, not story

18 persnickety { 05.12.13 at 5:04 pm }

Darn it, sorry about the double post- trying to correct the last sentence.
Should also add that we try very hard to avoid them, and yes it does result in being in the crummy cinema.
I think movie theatres have discovered, like airlines, that people will pay for upgrades, so they are abandoning the plain movie goer. We also have the option of VMax (better surround sound!) and Gold Class ( larger, comfortable seats and food and alcohol service). We do go to gold class, as they don’t have 3D set up, and on tuesday it isn’t much more than a normal ticket. plus, no 3D. Also no kids (due to liquor licensing)

19 loribeth { 05.12.13 at 5:50 pm }

Well, I’m back from Gatsby… and I do have a bit of a headache. 😉 Both the movie & the 3D experience were better than I expected (headache notwithstanding). It did sort of fit in with the over-the-topness that is Baz Luhrmann’s trademark. It was sort of cool to see Fitzgerald’s words literally float off the screen as Tobey Maguire (as Nick) typed them. But did it really add that much to the movie? I’m not sure. I’m sure I would have been just as happy to view it in plain old regular 2D. I think it might have its place in a movie like Avatar, where there are a lot of special effects & fantasy elements, as Persnickety said. But most of the time, I think it’s debatable whether it really adds anything to the story. :p

20 Siochana { 05.12.13 at 6:35 pm }

I have the same issues. I often get a headache or nausea after a 3D movie. It can be ameliorated by sitting not too near the screen. Another annoying thing is that the 3D glasses push my glasses into my eyes, which causes my eyelashes to brush on them, causing big smears on the lenses partway through the movie. So I have to either leave and clean my glasses, or try to watch around giant spots.

21 Barb { 05.12.13 at 7:49 pm }

I hate 3-D. We have lots of good options for non 3-D here. Come visit and plan some movie time! 😉

22 Katherine A { 05.12.13 at 8:26 pm }

Too many long-standing problems with headaches/migraines/etc to see movies in 3-D for me. I’ve been to see one, and midway through, I had to take the glasses off for awhile – it’s a good thing it was a relatively short movie. 3-D tends to make me nauseated/motion-sick as well. I can’t imagine trying to watch a movie that’s 2+ hours or has a lot of action/fast moving motion on the screen. Husband wears glasses, so the 3-D ones aren’t real comfortable for him.

That, and I really strongly dislike being startled – I jump easily, and I don’t think I’d do well with something even mildly frightening jumping off the screen at me. Like the scene in “Fellowship of the Ring” where Bilbo snarls, I yelped out loud the first time I saw that in the theater (in 2-d), and if he’d actually lunged off the screen at me in 3-D it would have been really unpleasant.

Sounds like many of us are not huge fans of the 3-D movie either. We need to plan some sort of virtual 2-D movie outing :)!

23 Tigger { 05.12.13 at 8:53 pm }

Hate them, for the same reason. The first time we went to one I had a migraine by the time it was even a quarter of the way in. We stayed anyways. I thought maybe we were too close. Then? Then we saw another one to test the theory, made sure we sat far enough back…and I still developed a migraine. So no more 3D for me. If husband wants to see one, he can go with a friend of ours and then they both get to see it…and it’s usually a movie that either one of them don’t mind seeing a second time so that I have someone to go with me.

24 Stinky { 05.12.13 at 9:14 pm }

I’m going to stand alone here I know, but I actually love them! Enjoyed the Hobbit (although was ‘aware’ of the higher frame rate for a while). I’m shortsighted too, but always wear contact lenses, so maybe that makes a difference in the focusing/eyestrain/headache department. I’ve wondered about people who claim 3D just gives them a headache – I don’t think my mum can stand it either, and she has quite poor vision and astigmatism also.

I thought 3D even made Avatar bearable, although I am wary of gimmicky things that seemed designed more for a 3D audience – Life of Pi had a bit of this too, although I did enjoy that much more (storyline wise). To me it enhances my viewing experience, but agree that both 2D and 3D should be fairly available

25 a { 05.12.13 at 10:11 pm }

I can’t really see the 3D, but I haven’t used any of the fancy modern glasses – just the crappy old cardboard ones from the days of yore. Also, it gives me a headache. Apparently many people have brains that can’t really process the technology. But I don’t see movies at the theater that frequently anyway. And I certainly wouldn’t pay extra for it – I guess it hasn’t really hit my area that hard yet.

26 Esperanza { 05.12.13 at 11:32 pm }

I just saw Iron Man 3 on the IMAX (a REALLY big screen) in 3D and I thought it was AWESOME. I really like 3D movies if they are FILMED in 3D. If they change them after the fact I’m not as interested. I only see movies in the theater about twice a year now so I go to see that stuff that looks cool more than anything. I love seeing stuff on the IMAX and 3D is an added bonus.

27 Kris { 05.13.13 at 12:14 am }

So far I’ve noticed a few tricks that seem to help the headaches 3D can produce:
1) sit in the center of the theater
2) bring lens wipes for both you’re glasses and the 3D glasses
3) try to only see 3D films that are either animated or shot in 3D (they produce less strain -at least to me – than those with the 3D added on.
4) close one eye if you notice the headache starting (it will remove the 3D and help ease a bit of the pain)
Hope this helps and good luck!

28 Aerotropolitan Comitissa { 05.13.13 at 6:02 am }

I think sooner or later they will settle down with it. I mean, I love 3d in its place but its place is not *everywhere*. Luckily here there is still plenty of 2d action in convenient times and places. We see 2d more often than 3d but there have been two that we have thought would be better in 3d. It doesn’t give me a headache and I like camp/kitch sometimes if I’m not serious about the movie itself. And there was one which was genuinely enhanced as the visuals were just perfect for it. But generally it’s kind of tiresome.

29 Aerotropolitan Comitissa { 05.13.13 at 6:11 am }

Three. And the one which actually was legit I thought was Finding Nemo – a re-release but carefully chosen and artfully done. Also a fine movie regardless. And animated which I think did help make the visual effects more… natural, which sounds weird. The worst 3d was flesh and blood actors and I think the advice about sticking to animation may be sound based on a small sample, though I can see that things purposefully shot in 3d would also be superior. The biggest problem is when people forget to focus on the fundamentals. Ill thought out 3d is really very bad.

30 Chickenpig { 05.13.13 at 6:46 am }

I hate 3D with a passion. Like other people here in the comment section, I have pretty severe visual defects. Wearing glasses over glasses is a serious pain. I am also technically blind in one eye. My brain doesn’t accept the signal from my left eye, but when I’m wearing glasses that need both eyes to work this way it’s like being trapped for 2 hrs in a carnival fun house…and NOT in a good way.

31 sharah { 05.13.13 at 10:46 am }

Hate them. They make me motion sick and/or trigger a migraine.

32 Melissa { 05.13.13 at 7:21 pm }

The last 3D movie I saw…I know that I saw one with my son; however I can’t for the life of me remember what it was. I remember thinking that it wasn’t anything special – and I didn’t get sick over it. I remember thinking I woldn’t have spent the extra cash to see something in 3D the next time. The exception was the movie that I was a die hard fan in…

33 Peg { 05.13.13 at 7:56 pm }

I can’t stand 3D movices. They drive my kids crazy too.

34 Jamie { 05.13.13 at 10:46 pm }

Avoid. Afraid of getting motion sickness. 🙁

35 Battynurse { 05.14.13 at 2:30 am }

Depends. The short Bugs Life movie at Disneyland, I totally LOVE! I saw both of the last two Harry Potters in 3D and honestly didn’t see the point. There were a couple of scenes that stood out as cool in 3D but most of it didn’t and paying $20 a ticket just for the movie kind of sucked.

36 ana { 05.15.13 at 1:53 pm }

Late to this but had to add my vote—HATE 3D movies because my eyes are f-ed up (not the medical term…amblyopia, I think is the real one) and I don’t actually have depth perception so I cannot see the 3D stuff—it just gives me a headache.

37 Amber { 05.22.13 at 5:43 pm }

Not to mention how damn expensive they are!

38 Amel { 06.20.13 at 1:35 pm }

I can’t watch IMAX movies ‘coz it makes me want to throw up in just a few minutes (like a serious bad case of sea-sickness, which I also suffer from). I do like 3D movies but not for every movie. We don’t watch movies at the cinema normally ‘coz there’s only one theatre in this small village, so we mostly watch movies at home. And hubby bought a passive 3D screen ‘coz he knows I can’t handle active 3D, so I’m glad to know I can enjoy some 3D movies at home without having to go to the theatre, even though they say that active 3D movies are better than passive ones.

(c) 2006 Melissa S. Ford
The contents of this website are protected by applicable copyright laws. All rights are reserved by the author