The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey could very well be a game changer for the film industry, and not just because the first installment of Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings prequel is a guaranteed box office hit. The film is the first major motion picture being released in 48 frames per second, as opposed the usual 24. That means that each second of footage has twice as much visual information as the typical film. If successful, The Hobbit could do for 48fps what Avatar did for 3D, giving theatrical releases another selling point that home video can't match. But the film has been screened, and not every critic is sold on the process, which apparently takes time for the eyes to get used to and adds a level of detail that does the film's visual effects a disservice.
Peter Jackson, perhaps predictably, doesn't think there's a problem at all.
At a press conference for The Hobbit, Coming Soon reported Jackson's response to these concerns. "I'm fascinated by reactions," says the director. "I'm tending to see that anyone under the age of 20 or so doesn't really care and thinks it looks cool, not that they understand it but they often just say that 3D looks really cool. I think 3D at 24 frames is interesting, but it's the 48 that actually allows 3D to almost achieve the potential that it can achieve because it's less eye strain and you have a sharper picture which creates more of the 3-dimensional world."
Jackson obviously has a lot invested in the filmmaking process, and wouldn't be promoting it if he didn't think it was a good idea. Still, it's hard not to read his "under the age of 20 or so" comment as a little passive-aggressive. The problem is that these critics are too old and set in their ways to appreciate something new? Possibly. CraveOnline is reserving judgment until we see the film for ourselves later this week.