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10 More Movies We Want To See Make A 3D Comeback

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?

Blade Runner
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…

The Matrix
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.

Total Recall
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?

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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.


  • Chester Copperpot

    I don’t think you get it, I don’t want to see anything in 3D! I will drive to a theater 30 minutes out of the way to see the same film in 2D.
     It’s distracting, gives me a mild headache, and takes away from the drama while adding nothing but a low rate magic trick. I really hope this trend ends soon and people leave great work alone. Meanwhile stopping making horrible films with “In 3D” in the title.

  • Scott M Davis

    What about Scanners, where the guy head explodes.. in glorious 3-D!

  • Jonathonwilliams1982


  • zela

    Real 3D, when done right, is fun and exciting and shows the world as it really is with characters and objects projecting off the screen and into the room as well as deep into the viewing screen.
    Post production 3D, which is what all of these movies will be, is like looking into a fishbowl  and should really be called 2-1/2D. And why even bother  when 3D BD players can already do these conversions on their own to any movie without paying Hollywood prices.

  • J2

    But you’re missing the point.  Animated movies can be turned into 3D by reconstructing a ‘new’ movie, using the same voices and plot and so on, but offsetting the virtual camera angle by a slight amount.  in effect, creating a new Toy Story with a slightly different camera angle, then combining the alternate frames.  This can’t be done with a live action movie.

  • Soren Kierkagard

    I can’t believe people are whinging about 3-D. Did people whinge about colour TV when it first came out? I’m starting to think they did.

    “Man, its just too much red and green, it makes my eyes hurt, what a gimmick!”

    People want immersive reality goggles and shit, and yet refuse to make the steps in between.

  • Anonymous

    How’s about all three of the first star wars movies. Monster, Inc., Snow Dogs, The Goonies, The Wizard of Oz, Dr. Strange love or How I learned to stop Worrying and Love the Bomb., Fly away Home, Ground Hog Day, Just Visiting, Ghost Busters, Down Periscope. And I can go on cause I’ve a library of over 800 movies. Though not all would be suitable for 3D. Journey to the center of the Earth redone in Real 3D. Cheaper 3D TV’s and Equipment.

  • Anonymous

    OH How about Tremors 1&2.

  • Guest

    Why does everything have to be a remake? How about some new concepts? Are you telling me in world with a population of 6.7 billion, no one can come up with a single new idea?

  • Tonym506

    I’ve got a Samsung TV that I’ll be watching the Star Wars blueray in 3D with a push of a button.

  • whynot

    Forget 3D movies, what about 3D games?  Doom, Halo, Final Fantasy?

  • zela

    J2, are you saying that these animated conversions can project objects into the room without creating new footage shot in steroscopic 3D?


  • Nereyda_o


  • Andrewfortmeier

    I think you are spot on with using the medium to fully immerse you in the world of the film. In fantasy I think Tron would be great. But the one that jumped out at me was Saving Private Ryan. How much more intense would the beach assault be in 3d.

  • Dpcoltx

    Actually, this is a real concern and very much a health issue. Much like video games that cause epilepsy. Some of the 3d stuff, does bother my eyes, and my fiancé can’t watch them or play video games at all. If she did, she’d be dizzy and essentially blind for the next few days. This problem is very real, and harder to write-off when you’ve had or seen the effects first hand.

    And honestly, I don’t want reality goggles. After breaking away from as much tv or movies as I used to watch, I find that I just want reality.

    In addition, I did see Harry potter in 3d. It was neat, but I would’ve enjoyed it just as much without it, for a ticket price of 6.00 here rather than 15.00. Heck, last summer most movies were 3.50.

  • Anonymous

    Unfortunately I have not seen a quality 3D retrofit. In my opinion adding elements should enhance the story and the experience and not be a gimmick to get the film in the theaters again at an extra $3 bucks. Note to the Film companies I will go see Star Wars or Raiders at a theater because the films are Awesome on the big screen and stand on their own. You don’t need to spend the money on the crappy 3D. In the end wouldnt it be more profitable to run the film for a week with no enhancements than spending the money on 3D and running it for a month? 

  • Nightryder

    How about Hollywierd just putting out GOOD movies???? How’s that for a “new concept” ?

  • Vegasraptor

    Actually, starting next year, Lucasfilm will be re-releasing ALL of the Star Wars movies in 3D.

  • David Fullam

    2001? Kubrick would rise from the dead and kill anyone who ever attempted that!

  • Ben

    Aliens.  Ninja Scroll, obviously.  300.  Sin City.  Moulin Rouge.  Oh! And the Rescuers Down Under!

  • Ben

    Apparently they have opposite polarized glasses so that you can watch a 3D movie in 2D.

  • Shaun Bailey

    I agree with Chester Copperpot (you Gooney!).  3D is really not as great as Hollywood would have us all think.  It just adds a huge amount of cost to individual tickets (and money to their bottom line) and adds little value to the overall experience.  I really don’t like it myself because I feel like I am getting robbed every time I have to pay for a 3D ticket.  3D is just not worth $10 extra.

  • Michael Howey

    Can’t be sure but I think that 3D gives headaches because even though the eyes are recieving different information, everthing is at the same focal length. When the eyes don’t change focus for close things, this confuses the brain. You can get away with it for a 15 minute disney ride but 2 plus hours? No way.
    Note that I’m just supposing this based on the obvious physics and biology.

  • Matt Goldey

    Right on. 3D doesn’t work and never will. Here’s why:

  • demoncat_4

    four of the movies i would love to see done again in 3d are already on this articles list. though would think star wars return of the jedie lucas needs to hurry and do in 3d if nothing else for how creeepy jabba would look and also the sarlac pit and rancor would be interesting in 3d

  • Thomas A.K.

    It’s different when the movie is filmed in 3D, but when they haphazardly throw a 3D gloss over existing films, that’s where it gets obnoxious.

  • stealthwise


  • Ryan

    NO 3D!!!! I HATE this fad!!!-

  • Jacob


  • Wildstorm

    I wouldn’t mind 3D as long as I didn’t have to pay extra for glasses, if the movie wasn’t so dark, and/or I can reuse the same glasses from a previously viewed movie and not have to pay the extra money.

  •!/ David R. Schmitt

    Eff 3-D and especially eff 3-D “conversion” as they look even more crappy then headache inducing “shot in 3D”

  •!/ David R. Schmitt

    And no doubt changing the films contents yet again….

  • DoubleWide

    Fantastic Voyage would be a good example, especially Raquel Welsh in scuba gear. YOWZA!

  • Anonymous

    These movies are all perfectly fine without 3d.  

  • Gmartin370

    I have a 3D TV and Bluray player and still can’t figure how to do that, how do you convert 2D to 3D? Cheer’s!!!

  • Gmartin370

    I LOVE 3D when it’s done right, good examples are all the Disney flicks. Converted movies seem to just
    add depth and isn’t really 3D. You can convert you own DVD’s to 3D using programs like DVDFAB 8 QT and get the same results but it’s not Real 3D.

  • Nearmint67

    The Lord of the Rings trilogy.  Helm’s Deep, the Battle of Pellinore Fields, and the Ford at Rivendell seem like standout scenes.  But mostly I wanna see the Balrog.

  • Thad

    “Did people whinge about colour TV when it first came out?”

    Colorizing black-and-white movies is stupid.

  • Thad

    Not sure what you mean, but yes, a 3D upconversion for a movie that’s already 3D rendered is a lot more trivial (and better-looking) than upconverting live-action footage.  Essentially you just take the original 3D models and re-render them.

    (It’s a bit more complicated than that in practice — my understanding is that in some of the shots characters look like they’re looking in one direction in 2D and another once it’s upconverted to 3D, and those bits have to be redone — but it’s still pretty close to just checking a different box before hitting the Render button.)

    Toy Story 1 and 2 actually looked great in 3D — probably the best-looking 3D movies I’ve seen except Avatar itself.  I think that’s because scale played such an important part in the design of those movies and because they’re jam-packed with so many little details.

  • Thad

    “How’s about all three of the first star wars movies.”

    Oh good, somebody literally didn’t read more than two words into the article before posting.

  • Thad

    Yeah, good luck selling your new idea as a 3D movie costing tens of millions of dollars to shoot when Hollywood’s got plenty of brands that are already sure bets.

  • Thad

    Doom is open-source.  There’s absolutely nothing stopping anyone who wants to from taking a crack at it.

    As for Final Fantasy, FF1, 2, and 4 have seen almost as many damn ports as Pac-Man.  I would just as soon see Square Enix give them a damn rest for a few years.

  • Thad

    Good God, you can’t even spell your trite portmanteau insults correctly.

  • Thad

    It’s British.  You could have Googled it in less time than it took to post a reply.

  • Thad

    I believe Ebert has actually praised Avatar’s use of 3D, just condemned its market saturation since.

    Which I feel is a perfectly valid point of view.  Crafting a world and presenting it in 3D seemed like it was the entire POINT of Avatar (it sure wasn’t the tacked-on Dances With Wolves in Space plot), whereas since then it’s been used as a sloppy excuse to charge an extra $3 per ticket.

    I’ve never seen a live-action upconversion that I liked.

  • AdamH12110

    I’d like to see some of the old horror and sci-fi movies that were originally shown in 3-D in 3-D since my generation never got to see them that way.  Stuff like Creature from the Black Lagoon, It Came from Outer Space and the original House of Wax. 

  • Random_Dude

    You left out Starship Troopers.

  • Jacob

    Actually, it would’ve taken about the same amount of time. And if I had, I wouldn’t have gotten a reply from yoouuuuuuuu.

  • Dan Tyson

    I didn’t notice he’d made a spelling error. I was too busy rethinking my whole life due to his mind-melting new proposal. He’s, like, so right.

  • Dan Tyson

    Yeah, if you don’t like 3D, then GO ELSEWHERE. We don’t need to know how much you hate it, or how it gives your girlfriend nosebleeds, etc, etc, etc. I don’t like the idea of skydiving — it doesn’t mean I race to skydiving message boards and waste everyone’s time telling them how much I can’t stand heights.

    I agree, all 3D is not made equal, but when it’s done right, it looks GREAT! And frankly, I don’t give a DAMN if it gives you a headache. If so, DON’T GO. DO SOMETHING ELSE. Go for a g’damn WALK or something. Read a freakin’ book. Go see a 2D movie and then go post somewhere about how you love a nice, flat two-dimensional screen.

  • Omitterati

    When has anyone watched a ‘2D’ movie and gone “Oh my God! Where’s the depth! I can’t perceive any depth in this film!”? Precisely. Never. ‘2D’ movies are and always have been seen in ‘3D’ All this View-Master shit is an expensive, utter waste-of-time.

  • Troy

    after about half an hour, my eyes adjust to it and i don’t even notice it’s in 3D anymore. if people in the 50s had to pay extra for colour movies that, part way through, would revert to black and white, then yes, i’m sure they would have whinged their faces off

  • zela

    Thad; J2 said “Animated movies can be turned into 3D “. So it appears he’s talking about a 2D to 3D conversion not 3D to an improved(?) 3D; basically post production. I personally don’t think much of post production, which is what this blog is about,  and  will avoid them whenever they occur in the future.

    Now Real 3D is something else. Just watched Monsters vs Aliens 3d and it was spectacular. It is, in my opinion, “the best” 3D I’ve seen so far with characters and objects projected into the room and great depth of field as well. I first saw the movie in 2D blu ray when it originally came out  and was quite disappointed but in 3D it was an entirely different movie. Suddenly the characters and action came to life and the dialogue seemed to have more meaning. The addition of a great Dolby soundtrack combined to make it a really great viewing experience.

    I hope the Motion Picture Industry makes many more of these going forward because I will be there to watch each and every one of them.


  • Dpcoltx

    How about because i like going to the movies, and since our local theater has decided not to carry the 2d versions of the movies I want to see, I am not able to go see the movies.

    Next Nearest theatre is over an hour away.

  • Wildstorm

    So in other words you like to go to boards and complain about people complaining about 3D.  So if you don’t like people bitching about 3D movies then you should go to a 3D movie and not read the boards.

    Also ALL movies are shown on a “nice, flat two-dimensional screen.” 

  • David Davenport

    Mad Max 2 has some potential , from boomerang fingers flying to V8 and tanker driven mayhem

  • Kandor

    Superman I and II

  • Bill_P

    Actually there were people saying color 3D was just a fad.  This was at a time when color shows were rare enough they advertised them as such by adding “In Living Color” to it’s commercials.  Bonanza wasn’t so popular because it was a great show, it was one of the first to be done in color so everyone who bought a color set watched it to get what they paid for.

  • zela

    Not to be argumentative but you can buy glasses on ebay that convert 3D to 2D(in the Theater). Of course you’d still have to pay the 3D price but you’d save the drive.


  • P_keely

    Well, 2001: A Space Odyssey really doesn’t need to be made in 3D, what an awful, awful time

  • Mark

    Fast Times on Ridgemont High would be even more epic in 3D.

  • Educatexan

    Not everybody gets headaches from 3D.  My roommates and I watch them often and enjoy them thoroughly.  For those of you who do suffer from the headaches: no one is forcing you to watch them in 3D.  They are always available in 2D as well.

    Why is everybody so aghast that differing opinions exist?  It’s as if you demand that everyone in the world be a cookie-cutter copy of yourself.

  • Anonymous

    They are some great listings – Alien, and Raiders of the lost arc especially!

  • Anonymous

    They are some good ones.

    I  never would of thought of Moulin Rouge, But I’d go see it. Chicago would be great too!

  • Anonymous

    Some Horror movies would be great.

    Like the Texas Chainsaw remake and original Nightmare on Elm St.

  • Tony R

    They have been talking as if 3d is the only way you can see these movies, yet every city I go to to see a 3d movie has a 2d option at that multiplex.  The are just mad because they predicted that 3d could not last, yet it did.  All their reasons that no one likes 3d have fallen flat because people are choosing 3d despite the 2d showing across the hall.  They have lost the “no one like 3d” argument.

  • Jfreund 303

    I would like to see a remake of the movie IT hopefully this post sparks something!

  • guest

    i do not want immersive reality goggles cuz 3d gives me a massive headache i take the glasses off and miss some of the movie cuz it hurts the old style glasses didnt do that.and before you start slammin other people put yourself in thier headache we misss parts of a movie we payed a shitload to see because the 3d effect gives us a headache!!!!!!!thats not just whinin asshole!!!!thats us gettin ripped off. !