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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
The "unfinished/polished" CGI Issue
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Arandir
Gondor


Jun 12 2013, 2:51pm

Post #1 of 34 (1137 views)
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The "unfinished/polished" CGI Issue Can't Post

I loved the trailer and although I thought it should have centered more on Bilbo and the Dwarves' quest, it still got me excited. Nonetheless, I was one of those that were taken aback by some of the CGI shown in certain shots.

Most users on this forum are reasoning that there's still time for polishing shots before the release of the film and that's fair enough. However, one has to keep in mind that many of the scenes shown in the trailer were originally going to form part of the first film (before it became a trilogy) and therefore, work had almost been completed on them by July 2012. Since then, I'm sure WETA has had time to go through them several times.

Which is why I'm concerned about it all. Do the scenes from Beorn to the Barrels really need to be polished? Don't you think they're 90% finished by now (for over a year) and that WETA is concentrating its efforts on the rest of the story's visual effects?

Again, I enjoyed the trailer but I thought Legolas' face was too perfect - the first shot where he slides in front of Thorin and surprises him is a giveaway digital double. Ironically, Beorn's bear form looks so much more realistic than Legolas himself Crazy

The landscapes (especially Laketown) are breathtaking, however, I'm worried that these so-called "unfinished" CGI shots have actually already been approved and completed and therefore no improvement will be made upon them ...

'The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey' Review


LordGawain
Rivendell

Jun 12 2013, 2:56pm

Post #2 of 34 (606 views)
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yes [In reply to] Can't Post

we all are, mate. ;)


Lindele
Gondor


Jun 12 2013, 2:56pm

Post #3 of 34 (586 views)
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I would be willing [In reply to] Can't Post

to guarantee you that these shots are not completed.
They will be better for the finished film. You can count on it.


jimmyfenn
Rohan


Jun 12 2013, 2:59pm

Post #4 of 34 (594 views)
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cgi [In reply to] Can't Post

regarding beorn, its a clear sign of the dodgy cgi when people cant tell the difference between a bear and a dog!

im gonna just try to accept the cgi, and go with the computer game vibe, all those people jumping around makes me think of double tapping on the control pad for a high jump in sonic.

"You Tolkien to me?!" - Hobbit de Niro


frodolives
Lorien

Jun 12 2013, 3:05pm

Post #5 of 34 (545 views)
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I fear you are correct [In reply to] Can't Post

I doubt these will be improved upon. I don't recall ever seeing unfinished fx work in any previous trailer for any of the middle earth films. PJ's standards for CGI has suffered for some reason. He is so obsessed with the CGI 'look' that I think he may actually like the way it looks. I would be very surprised to see these effects improved.


Arandir
Gondor


Jun 12 2013, 3:12pm

Post #6 of 34 (549 views)
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Looking at the AUJ teaser now [In reply to] Can't Post

all the VFX shots are exactly the same as they are in the film (1 year before its release). Unimpressed


Quote
He is so obsessed with the CGI 'look' that I think he may actually like the way it looks.

Unfortunately, I agree with this - it seems to be that way Unsure

'The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey' Review


Arandir
Gondor


Jun 12 2013, 3:19pm

Post #7 of 34 (545 views)
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Seeing some screencaps [In reply to] Can't Post


Quote
regarding beorn, its a clear sign of the dodgy cgi when people cant tell the difference between a bear and a dog!

I still think that's a bear! Wink

'The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey' Review


Bandit
The Shire

Jun 12 2013, 3:29pm

Post #8 of 34 (473 views)
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Bear [In reply to] Can't Post

I agree, I'm not entirely convinced about the bear's head. The proportions looked a little off, particularly the size of the eye. I think it was way too big.


architecthis
Lorien


Jun 12 2013, 3:43pm

Post #9 of 34 (475 views)
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What I Said Below [In reply to] Can't Post

I'll re-post what I said in another thread...

In my view, the whole problem is that too may directors are accepting the idea that CGI needs to invade every blockbuster movie based on an epic work of fantasy.

Why can't CGI remain a tool and not the framework for an entire film?

The reason LOTR worked so well was because I believed I could be watching actual ancient history unfold on the screen, and I think a lot of people felt/feel the same. I have no problem with adding Tauriel, Legolas, etc. but when the director decides to abandon the production methods that made the original trilogy a classic in favor of CGI in order to accommodate 3D and other new technology - this I don't accept. The result is cartoonish and not believable. It is overdone.

Cartoons and CGI are appropriate for some films (finding nemo, fantastic mr. fox, etc.) but we should not be using CGI to try to create a realistic, believable fantasy world. It is too perfect, bright, slick, polished to be taken seriously.

Another problem with relying heavily on computers is that you can create anything with them because it isn't real. Some directors (Peter in this instance) do not seem to be stopping to ask "should I include this sequence just because I can?". When you have to physically construct a set or model it forces you to solve design problems and consequentially becomes more believable on film - even though you can tell your looking at a model or matte painting, it really does not matter if it is done well enough.

If we dont get back to building miniatures and using practical effects, fantasy film - at least fantasy film for adults - as a genre will be over.


Arannir
Valinor


Jun 12 2013, 3:56pm

Post #10 of 34 (441 views)
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Adults? [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To

If we dont get back to building miniatures and using practical effects, fantasy film - at least fantasy film for adults - as a genre will be over.



Hmmm.... there seem to be quite some adults who like quality-films who do not have many issues with the look of this particular films on this board (AUJ and what we saw of DoS).



“A dragon is no idle fancy. Whatever may be his origins, in fact or invention, the dragon in legend is a potent creation of men’s imagination, richer in significance than his barrow is in gold.” J.R.R. Tolkien

Words of wisdom that should be remembered - both by critics, purists and anyone in between.


Kimtc
Rohan


Jun 12 2013, 4:01pm

Post #11 of 34 (435 views)
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I thought Legolas looked a little off, too. [In reply to] Can't Post

But I assumed that 1) Orlando Bloom has lost all his baby fat, and 2) they might have done a bit of a "Benjamin Button" on him to make him look younger (although what's 60 years in elf years--2 years?).


redgiraffe
Rohan

Jun 12 2013, 4:03pm

Post #12 of 34 (440 views)
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Bears vs. Dogs [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To

Quote
regarding beorn, its a clear sign of the dodgy cgi when people cant tell the difference between a bear and a dog!

I still think that's a bear! Wink


If I'm not mistaken I believe bears and dogs are quite closely related to one another. I've always thought bears' faces resemble that of some dogs. Considering this is fantasy it's quite possible that they aren't going with a standard bear look.

-Sir are you classified as human
-Negative, I am a meat-popsicle


Eleniel
Grey Havens


Jun 12 2013, 4:05pm

Post #13 of 34 (419 views)
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Talking of which... [In reply to] Can't Post

what's with the two figures grappling on the far left of this screencap:

http://heirsofdurin.files.wordpress.com/...hd-mp4_000068777.jpg

Unless it's my eyes, they both look to be headless - presumably the heads are still to be added in with CGI??? Crazy


"Choosing Trust over Doubt gets me burned once in a while, but I'd rather be singed than hardened."
¯ Victoria Monfort


architecthis
Lorien


Jun 12 2013, 4:07pm

Post #14 of 34 (401 views)
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of course [In reply to] Can't Post

There are some exceptions, as with most things.

But you missed my point - which is that epic fantasies are usually more appealing to adults when they are believable and excess CGI and physical anomalies can and often do detract from a film's believability.


Shagrat
Gondor

Jun 12 2013, 4:08pm

Post #15 of 34 (393 views)
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Bear vs Dog [In reply to] Can't Post

That's more bad design than bad CGI Crazy


entmaiden
Forum Admin / Moderator


Jun 12 2013, 4:09pm

Post #16 of 34 (429 views)
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I doubt Weta is done with the CGI shots [In reply to] Can't Post

I seriously doubt Weta had time to finish the shots from what would have been in the first film. Most of the CGI is completed during post-production, and the primary focus after filming was complete was to finish the first film, and do the CGI for AUJ. Weta is probably just now picking up those scenes that were meant for the first film in a two-film scenario, hence the unfinished look in the trailer.


Glorfindela
Valinor


Jun 12 2013, 4:09pm

Post #17 of 34 (391 views)
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I couldn't originally tell the bear from a dog [In reply to] Can't Post

But that was only because the glimpse of the beast at the door was so brief. After someone posted a still of it, I could see quite clearly that it was a bear.


In Reply To
regarding beorn, its a clear sign of the dodgy cgi when people cant tell the difference between a bear and a dog!



redgiraffe
Rohan

Jun 12 2013, 4:10pm

Post #18 of 34 (421 views)
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I will say this [In reply to] Can't Post

Certain shots from the 2nd trailer of AUJ (such as the goblin slashing at bilbo) for some reason looked better in the actual film. I don't think it was improved CGI but something about the movement looked better. And other shots like the wide-shot of the front of Rivendel (which I thought looked completely CGI) weren't even used. Hopefully that's the case with some of these shots. But I'm not holding my breath to see major improvements from now to film.

However, I would be VERY happy if these quick shots turned out to be the only bad CGI in the film (probably unlikely). If that were the case then I don't think I would really have a problem. But again, it's the overabundance of CGI mixed with OTT action that makes me worried. Just my opinion thought.

-Sir are you classified as human
-Negative, I am a meat-popsicle


Glorfindela
Valinor


Jun 12 2013, 4:17pm

Post #19 of 34 (404 views)
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On the CGI quality. [In reply to] Can't Post

I must say that (to me) on the whole the CGI looked pretty decent in the trailer. The only thing I didn't particularly like was the 'flying and leaping Elves', which did look very unrealistic – but then I thought the same about the skating and leaping Legolas in LOTR, which really did nothing for me.

I believe there are technical reasons why CGI needs to be used in so many cases, and as previously mentioned, one hardly expects to see Beorn in a bear suit (in his bear form), etc., etc.


malickfan
Gondor


Jun 12 2013, 4:21pm

Post #20 of 34 (367 views)
Shortcut
Agreed [In reply to] Can't Post


Quote
In my view, the whole problem is that too may directors are accepting the idea that CGI needs to invade every blockbuster movie based on an epic work of fantasy.

Why can't CGI remain a tool and not the framework for an entire film?

The reason LOTR worked so well was because I believed I could be watching actual ancient history unfold on the screen, and I think a lot of people felt/feel the same. I have no problem with adding Tauriel, Legolas, etc. but when the director decides to abandon the production methods that made the original trilogy a classic in favor of CGI in order to accommodate 3D and other new technology - this I don't accept. The result is cartoonish and not believable. It is overdone.

Cartoons and CGI are appropriate for some films (finding nemo, fantastic mr. fox, etc.) but we should not be using CGI to try to create a realistic, believable fantasy world. It is too perfect, bright, slick, polished to be taken seriously.

Another problem with relying heavily on computers is that you can create anything with them because it isn't real. Some directors (Peter in this instance) do not seem to be stopping to ask "should I include this sequence just because I can?". When you have to physically construct a set or model it forces you to solve design problems and consequentially becomes more believable on film - even though you can tell your looking at a model or matte painting, it really does not matter if it is done well enough.




I was getting a definite 'Crystal Skull' vibe from the CGI...


‘As they came to the gates Cirdan the Shipwright came forth to greet them. Very tall he was, and his beard was long, and we was grey and old, save that his eyes were keen as stars; and he looked at them and bowed, and said ‘All is now ready.’

Perhaps the most fascinating Individual in Middle Earth



DanielLB
Immortal


Jun 12 2013, 4:27pm

Post #21 of 34 (355 views)
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I was hoping for zombie elves and orcs ... [In reply to] Can't Post

But their heads are on their shoulders, see here.

Smile


architecthis
Lorien


Jun 12 2013, 4:32pm

Post #22 of 34 (337 views)
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the same thing [In reply to] Can't Post

Is actually going on in the architecture world. Computer programs like 3D Studio Max and Rhino, combined with more affordable and much more powerful computers than a decade ago, have made it so easy to create beautiful forms on the fly that people are designing whole buildings inside programs that end up looking pretty cool, but have no actual substance.

The computer can be very tempting.


MorgolKing
Rivendell

Jun 12 2013, 4:32pm

Post #23 of 34 (371 views)
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I disagree.. [In reply to] Can't Post

Bilbo looks far older in the trailer than the movie and the wargs, while not exactly what I had hoped for, look much better in the movie than the trailer.


In Reply To
all the VFX shots are exactly the same as they are in the film (1 year before its release). Unimpressed


Quote
He is so obsessed with the CGI 'look' that I think he may actually like the way it looks.

Unfortunately, I agree with this - it seems to be that way Unsure



deskp
Lorien

Jun 12 2013, 5:21pm

Post #24 of 34 (311 views)
Shortcut
design [In reply to] Can't Post

I blame the larger than life design more than bad cgi.

As others have pointed out aswell, PJ is a gleefull kid in need to be held back, but noone seems to be doing that.


Skaan
Lorien


Jun 12 2013, 5:28pm

Post #25 of 34 (303 views)
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The bear's eyes [In reply to] Can't Post

I think the reason his eyes are rather big, is because they wanted to give Beorn's bear form the same eyes as his human form (wich is why they seem so expressive and blue aswell)

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