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Lens flares - will this fad go away soon?

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 
Recently this has been going out of control. While most movies use it only occasionally, some just greatly overuse it.

In some scenes of Lockout flares are so intense, they occupy most of the screen for prolonged period you can't see crap in there!

In Super 8, some of it are just floating in there and are completely unnecessary, imo. It's a visual glitch that would normally get the scene re-shot, but for some reason filmmakers seem to like it actually adds something up to the movie, but it just doesn't!

Do you think its a fad that will go away soon or do you like it and think it should stay?
post #2 of 24
Can you guys who can't stand 'lens flares' watch movies from the 70's-90's or are they too visually offensive?

Lol. My goodness....
post #3 of 24
The lens flares have even spread to HDTV. The series "Saving Hope" has many in every episode.
post #4 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary McCoy View Post

The lens flares have even spread to HDTV. The series "Saving Hope" has many in every episode.

We've found common ground, Gary! smile.gif

The lens flares in Saving Hope are out of control. They're everywhere, in every shot. Indoors, outdoors, in elevators, everywhere. I'm pretty sure most of them are digitally added in post. They're really obnoxiously overdone.

The show isn't very good either. One episode was all I could take.
post #5 of 24
I think it's way overdone. Super 8, Star Trek and I noticed it in the little bit of John Carter that I saw.

Can we start a controversy like the one over 3D?

I say, Lens Flares are a gimmick that add nothing to the story. Why are directors always doing lens flare? It gives me a headache. I wish they would release lens flare-less versions of these movies. Hollywood needs to concentrate on making good movies with gripping storylines instead of worrying about shooting for lens flare. They should advertise which theater has the lens flare version and which doesn't. I wonder if special polarized glasses would filter the lens flare?
post #6 of 24
I enjoyed the lens flares in Star Trek, Super-8, Close Encounters, Alien...

I don't see tons of them beyond that. Though maybe I don't watch enough TV.
post #7 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by R Harkness View Post

I enjoyed the lens flares in Star Trek, Super-8, Close Encounters, Alien...
I don't see tons of them beyond that. Though maybe I don't watch enough TV.

It's become quite a fad since J.J. Abrams made them popular again. The new Total Recall remake is filled with flares.
post #8 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by tlogan6797 View Post

I say, Lens Flares are a gimmick that add nothing to the story.
Hollywood needs to concentrate on making good movies with gripping storylines instead of worrying about shooting for lens flare.
+1000

Quote:
I wish they would release lens flare-less versions of these movies. They should advertise which theater has the lens flare version and which doesn't. I wonder if special polarized glasses would filter the lens flare?
As I understand it, the flairs flare is in the film itself, and is not the result of anything a movie theater is doing during presentation.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh Z View Post

It's become quite a fad since J.J. Abrams made them popular again.
Question: Was there a time in the history of cinema when lens flair flare was truly popular as an aesthetic device, as opposed to an unintended consequence of cameras and lighting?

Quote:
The new Total Recall remake is filled with flares.
Ahh, crap.mad.gif
post #9 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by tlogan6797 View Post

I think it's way overdone. Super 8, Star Trek and I noticed it in the little bit of John Carter that I saw.
Can we start a controversy like the one over 3D?
I say, Lens Flares are a gimmick that add nothing to the story. Why are directors always doing lens flare? It gives me a headache. I wish they would release lens flare-less versions of these movies. Hollywood needs to concentrate on making good movies with gripping storylines instead of worrying about shooting for lens flare. They should advertise which theater has the lens flare version and which doesn't. I wonder if special polarized glasses would filter the lens flare?

A movie is like a meal. It's either cooked right or not. Things like lens flare are like herbs and spices. It can either add to the flavor or ruin the dish if overdone.

Damn...now I'm hungry. I wonder what's in the fridge?
post #10 of 24
Quote:
Quote:
I wish they would release lens flare-less versions of these movies. They should advertise which theater has the lens flare version and which doesn't. I wonder if special polarized glasses would filter the lens flare?
As I understand it, the flairs flare is in the film itself, and is not the result of anything a movie theater is doing during presentation.

Let's not let the facts get in the way of a good rant!
Quote:
As I understand it, the flairs flare is in the film itself
True. The problem is that, from what I can see, MOST of the lens flare is added post production. You can tell by when you see the flare but there is no light source that would/should cause it naturally.
post #11 of 24
Quote:
Things like lens flare are like herbs and spices. It can either add to the flavor or ruin the dish if overdone.

Lens flare is like the shaky cam that started with NYPD Blue. It was new and different and then everybody started doing it and it got really annoying. To me, it's like Thai food...nobody goes to that restaurant anymore...it's too crowded.
post #12 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by oink View Post

Question: Was there a time in the history of cinema when lens flair flare was truly popular as an aesthetic device, as opposed to an unintended consequence of cameras and lighting?

The '70s.
Quote:
Originally Posted by tlogan6797 View Post

The problem is that, from what I can see, MOST of the lens flare is added post production. You can tell by when you see the flare but there is no light source that would/should cause it naturally.

You can aim a light into the camera lens from off to the side and get a flare without the light source being visible.

Some lens flares are added in post production. As I said, I'm pretty sure that most of them in Saving Hope are done that way. However, in J.J. Abrams' movies, for example, they're mostly done in-camera. In Star Trek and Super 8, he went to ridiculous extemes to have crew members shine lights into the lens.
post #13 of 24
post #14 of 24
^^^ I hope there's a sequel. That was waaaaaay too short!!!
post #15 of 24
Quote:
You can aim a light into the camera lens from off to the side and get a flare without the light source being visible.

Yes, but is AIMING a light into the camera natural? Panning across a set would cause a natural lens flare. When the camera is relatively still and there is a lens flare, that's NOT natural.
post #16 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by tlogan6797 View Post

Yes, but is AIMING a light into the camera natural? When the camera is relatively still and there is a lens flare, that's NOT natural.
Yes, but JJ says it's "cool."biggrin.gif
post #17 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by tlogan6797 View Post

Yes, but is AIMING a light into the camera natural? Panning across a set would cause a natural lens flare. When the camera is relatively still and there is a lens flare, that's NOT natural.
How about if a car is driving at night with it's headlights on and it crosses in front of the camera?

I guess the beef all you have concerning this subject is the use of fake/artificial flares, yes? Does it drive you nuts when you watch something like Die Hard?
post #18 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Simonian View Post

How about if a car is driving at night with it's headlights on and it crosses in front of the camera?
I guess the beef all you have concerning this subject is the use of fake/artificial flares, yes? Does it drive you nuts when you watch something like Die Hard?
1. Not a problem.
2. Yes sir.
3. Nope.
post #19 of 24
Okay. Well in that case, I guess I'd agree with all the recent over-hate of the new trend. 80% of the time it just doesn't appear natural but .... I don't find myself going, "Agh! Grrr!" when I see it as I just see it as a visual 'style' not unlike some crazy PCP-induced editing of a Tony Scott film. Ya know? Holy crap! As anyone seen Man on Fire or Domino ..or? How's that not annoying. tongue.gif I don't know. I guess I'm just not offended easily when it comes to video/picture and stuff. Audio on the other hand......

Anyway, thanks for cluing me in, Oink. wink.gif
post #20 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by tlogan6797 View Post

Yes, but is AIMING a light into the camera natural? Panning across a set would cause a natural lens flare. When the camera is relatively still and there is a lens flare, that's NOT natural.

Flares are caused by light refracting in the lens. This has nothing to do with movement. I'm sure you've seen shots like these in movies before:



post #21 of 24
Lens flair flare, like shakey cam, is being used as a gimmick ("look at me, ain't I avant-garde!"rolleyes.gif).
A little bit of each goes a long way IMO.

FWIW, whenever I am reminded of the artifice, it pulls me out of the story....my Suspension of Disbelief takes a hit.
And for me, the STORY is the most important aspect to a movie (whatever the genre).
It is the one thing that has to work.
post #22 of 24
Thread Starter 
post #23 of 24
^Yep, that says it all...biggrin.gif
post #24 of 24
Quote:
Flares are caused by light refracting in the lens. This has nothing to do with movement. I'm sure you've seen shots like these in movies before:

Understood. BUT how long would that be in a shot from a movie? Most likely it would be a brief shot as the camera pans the scene and it would be very natural and there is an obvious light source. What bugs me is when the camera is 180 degrees around (as in either one of those pictures) and yet there is STILL lens flare. It's just not natural.
Quote:
How about if a car is driving at night with it's headlights on and it crosses in front of the camera?

Again, and obvious and natural source of light. OK, granted the camera isn't moving, but the light source is. Same effect....the light source moving across the lens.
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