If CGI is bad, is CGI to blame?

Written by Patrick Jong Taylor

Kon TikiCGI Shark

Pundits cite instances of 'bad' CGI to argue that computer generated imagery is ruining films. But there may be a flaw in that reasoning.

Ever since the first Jurassic Park debuted in 1993, there's been an on-going debate as to whether CGI is actually good for filmmaking. Of course, over the last two-plus decades, that debate has done little to halt the extensive proliferation of computer generated imagery in movies.

Detractors of CGI will invariably point to examples in modern films wherein the integration of CGI and live action elements is less than convincing. But, as the video below points out, these instances when CGI calls attention to itself are dwarfed by the 'good' use of CGI that largely goes unnoticed by most movie-goers.

This video, 'Why CGI Sucks (Except it Doesn't)' comes courtesy of RocketJump Film School, an online destination for filmmaker tutorial videos. It's definitely worth watching and makes its case rather convincingly.

In a sense, CGI has become a bit like film sound: if an audience is engaged in the story, it will only notice CGI if something's wrong, since audiences have become accustomed to the level of mastery on display in current big budget features. So, as the video points out, if something's wrong onscreen, perhaps we shouldn't place too much blame on the tool itself.

Tags: Post & VFX

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