You know what I think? (I'm going to assume you do since you're here, reading this.) The answer is: They take a really simple concept and turn it into this gorgeos elaborate thing. And they do it all for real, in one camera shot. No CGI.
Yes, this has turned into another one of my CGI rants, but with Alice in Wonderland opening this weekend (and me going to see it), I can't help but feel betrayed by Tim Burton. The new OKGO video reminds me of the magic and awesomeness that Burton introduced us at the opening of Pee Wee, so his new film only shines as an abomination of that memory.
If you haven't seen the super sweet OKGO video, here it is: (P.S. The song itself is super awesome.)
Eric, my platonic life partner, makes the claim for the new Alice by saying, "He couldn't have done those things without CGI." And to an extent, I agree. Eric keeps going on about how amazing Helena Bonham Carter (Queen of Hearts) looks, with her big head to little body ratio. And even I admit, the Cheshire Cat looks pretty awesome.
But every single time that cartoony ridiculous pig slides under the Queen's feet at the end of the preview, I cringe. I understand that Alice in Wonderland is a surrealist story and that some leeway for cartooniness is necessary.
But my point is this - what's true with Alice is just as true with OKGO. They could've done a lot more with CGI. A lot more. But it wouldn't even have been half as awesome.
When I see things like that video, or The Corpse Bride, or even Where the Wild Things Are (which has the single best use of CGI I've ever seen in a film ever - but also happens to have some of the most trite dialogue I've ever seen in a film ever), I get a sense of magic, and I see how amazing real things can be.
Maybe that's the difference. Maybe when you see real things, it makes real life seem more magical. It's like, "Wow. Things can really look like that." But when something is too cartoony or CGI, even if it looks amazing, you know its not real. It ruins the illusion.
This is why Avatar means nothing to me. This is also why Avatar offends me on so many levels.
And I am disappointed in Tim Burton because I know how great and magical he can make real life look. He looks at life in such a different unique way and portrays it so eloquently, and I loved that about him. But with this new Alice, I feel like he's lost some of the magic.
And I hate losing magic. Peter Pan is my favorite because he never grows up, he never loses his magic. And he would never use CGI.