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100 Years of VFX

September 1, 2009

I make no bones about the fact that I consider visual effects to be the purest form of movie magic. So this video that goes through examples from the past century of visual tricks is gold.

There are some surprising omissions (where’s Méliès?) but I do understand that you can’t include everything. Of what is included, I find myself taken aback by some of the early stuff. Some of it “holds up,” though most of it doesn’t, but what I find really stunning is just the fact that they had the ideas at all. They imagined something that no one had ever seen, and made them happen, often by processes that no one had ever done.

It’s a reminder that VFX in itself isn’t, in fact, the real movie magic, but a tool. The real magic is the imagination behind the effects.

One Comment
  1. Nice clip. very inspiring.
    There are some omissions ,yes. Short clip for all there is.
    Between 1993 and 2004 I would have included 1999 The Matrix.
    I am concerned about “AVATAR”.
    The integration of real settings with VFX as in District 9 works wonderfully and at times your mind is trick into discerning what were real props and what was VFX giving the whole a lot of realism to it.
    However an all VFX enviroment has felt like a video game in the past (as in some takes from Phantom Menace for example). However James Cameron waited until now and he feels we are ready for it.
    But in all fairness I have not seen the footage in a big screen.
    Thanks Michael, great clip.

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