Opinions are, as a common aphorism will tell you, equal parts ubiquitous and odiferous, but they constitute 35% of the traffic on the internet.  (The remainder of the internet consists of 40% porn, 22% slander and 8% butterscotch ripple.)  One opinion that I run into often is the assessment that practical effects, i.e. actually throwing a stuntman out of a building like Burt Reynolds did in ‘Sharkey’s Machine’ is ALWAYS better than computer-generating the equivalent, like James Cameron did in ‘Titanic.’  It’s a limited viewpoint that puts a little too much emphasis on bad CGI (and not enough on bad practical effects), leading to today’s gaffer-taped query…

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) demands to know whether you’ve seen this boy, asking:  Practical effects or full-on CGI madness? 


About Author

Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture! And a nice red uniform.


  1. Malone_hasco on

    Practical effects as long as it can be made to look good. Like, Yoda sitting on tree stump look definitely better when actually there, while something like Hulk can’t be made with muscles alone (sorry Lou Ferrigno, you did good).

  2. Daniel Langsdale on

    This is really a “Yes, and” moment. I think it works best when they are used together, like with the motion-capture tech of Smeagol.

  3. A mix of both with CGI used sparingly. The original Star Wars trilogy and LOTR were fantastic with effects that hold up. The prequels and Hobbit, not so much. There was too much reliance on CGI.

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