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Ballad of Narayama

"The Ballad of Narayama" is a Japanese film of great beauty and elegant artifice, telling a story of startling cruelty. What a space it opens…

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If Jackass is in 3-D, will only jackasses watch 3-D?

As "Jackass 3-D" splats into theaters, Frank Paiva and I, over at MSN Movies, debate such urgent questions as: "Are we done with the 3-D yet?"; "What does 3-D add to or subtract from the cinematic experience?"; "Is the technology itself any good?"; and, "What's the best use for it? Science-fiction spectaculars? Art films? Porn? Amusement park rides?"

Here's part of my take:

I think 3-D is simply another incarnation of the much-hyped "Angle" feature on DVDs. You know -- it's still there on your remote. It was the feature that was supposed to allow You, the User, to select alternate angles within a scene (assuming the filmmakers had provided the footage). Your invocation of Megan Fox's cleavage and Jake Gyllenhaal's chest hairs is right on the money. The most commercially viable use for 3-D (and for "Angle" and for the Internet) is porn.

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