The Best and Worst 3D Movies of All Time

Soar Find a list of the best and worst 3D movies of all time you can pick up today to watch on your 3D TV! Movies made in 3D are experiencing a comeback right now (thanks to AVATAR), just like they have several times in the history of cinema. The best 3D movies add depth and texture to stories that are already good, yet somehow, the worst 3D movies just remind the viewer more forcefully how awful they are. But either way the viewer is in for a heightened experience. Enjoy this list of the best 3D movies and the worst 3D movies you can watch today on your new 3D TV.

Guest post John Sinitsky

With the recent release of AVATAR 3D in theaters, and soon to be DVD, interest in 3D has never been higher. While 3D movies are not new, 3D technology has made crucial advancements -- including 3D TVs for the home theater -- that make many believe this time 3D is here to stay.

Moviemakers first attempted 3D back in the 1920s, but paper 3D glasses didn't arrive until much later. The next revival of the 3D form came  in the 1950s, along with the glasses we know today. Even the big guys like John Wayne and Alfred Hitchcock got into 3D during that time, but then the form went dormant again, waiting for the next generation of moviegoers in the 1980s. Jaws 3D was of this era, as were Amityville 3D and Friday the 13th Part III. While there was a bit of an uptick in 3D movies for part of the 1990s, mostly in special IMAX theater specific movies, the form didn't come back into mainstream theaters much until the early 2000s. Here's a totally subjective gathering of worst and best 3D movies, with both categories in no particular order.

The Worst 3D Movies

Unless you're a girl age 11 to 13, or the younger sibling thereof, you'll agree that Jonas Brothers: The 3D Concert Experience ranks among the worst. But really it's OK. They made the movie to go after a particular demographic, and the movie does that with great skill, even if the parents accompanying their offspring feel like driving pins into their eyeballs throughout the movie.

The mid-80s 3D revival was presaged by a 1981 movie Comin' At Ya! This intellectual and philosophical feast features a bank robber, a woman forced into prostitution, and an Irish priest. If they all three walked into a bar, you'd have the first part of a joke. Anyway, a lot of the 3D effects were made to look as if they were coming right off the screen into the audience. It’s maybe not the worst movie out there, but definitely a contender for worst 3D movie.

It's unclear if The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lava Girl 3D should be on this list, because even though there were plenty of people who considered it the worst 3D movie ever, there were a handful that had an almost fanatical zeal in their love for it. The movie features the imaginary world of Planet Drool, with heroes Sharkboy and Lava Girl who materialize on earth and require help to save their home planet. One notable thing about this movie is some of the big-name stars in it: Taylor Lautner in his pre-Twilight days, George Lopez, David Arquette, and Kristen Davis are all in this movie.

The Best 3D Movies

Polar Express 3D is dark, dreamy, and full of innocent wonder and exuberance. Some haters criticized the addition of several characters not in the book, but since the book was only about 30 pages long, it required some expansion to get it to movie length. You could almost watch it with no sound and get a wonderful experience because the artwork is so hauntingly beautiful. It's a 3D dreamscape that anyone from age 3 to 100 will love.

You know how smug it feels to tell someone, "Be careful what you wish for!"? Well, that's the underlying premise of Coraline, a 2009 movie that didn't get nearly the attention it deserved. Coraline, voiced by Dakota Fanning, moves into an old house, where she feels bored and neglected. So she finds a hidden doorway and crosses over to a parallel world where dreams come true and parents are constantly adoring. This movie has that enchanting-but-slightly-frightening feel of other great movies like The Nightmare Before Christmas

The disclaimer for this last greatest 3D movie is that it was only released in 3D in limited showings. But the movie itself is awesome enough that 3D is the delectable buttercream frosting on this rich and perfectly-baked cake. Alfred Hitchcock's Dial M for Murder stars Grace Kelly as the quintessential Hitchcock Blonde, and it is impossible to do justice to the plot in just a few words. Suffice it to say, whether you can see it in 3D or not, this is one of the all-time great 3D movies (and otherwise) and if you haven't seen it, you're really missing out.

And of course, no discussion of 3D movies is complete without mention of AVATAR. Based on ticket sales alone, it is a contender for not just one of the best 3D movies, but the best all-around movie of many years.

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What's your pick for the best or worst 3D movie?


Steven58 (Chok'ete)

Avatar easily the best 3-D and best film of all time, lol.

Account Deleted

I don't know what I want from 3D, but I haven't seen one that I couldn't live without. No, I can't pick the best and swear to it. AVATAR is the newest one (3D) I've seen and Cameron invented the camera.
If I had to put money would be on James Cameron. Has he gone public?? Is it possible to buy stock in that man? I've never been tempted to buy stock before, but I'd sure place a few bucks on James Cameron, to win, at the local OTB.


Avatar is hands down the best 3D film ever made, and the best use of 3D.
Granted i haven't seen much 3D, but from what i have, i also think that Clash of the Titans use of 3D was pretty bad, it was obvious it was simply converted once complete. It was not worth the extra bucks as half the time nothing looked 3D at all. (nothing against Sam here, at all)

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