Watch: The Impressive Evolution of Visual Effects from 1878 to 2014
by Ethan Anderton
May 15, 2014
Last month, we featured a video that looked at the evolution of filmmaking from all the way back in 1878 to the films of 2014 Now another film reaches all the way back to the same year in the past, but this time with a focus on how visual effects have evolved over the years. It's a little hard to really get a significant vibe for the evolution of these special effects with such brief clips and using only one film to represent an entire year, but it's very interesting to see how far we've come in a very short period of time as technology becomes better and better exponentially every single year (and sometimes more frequent than that). Watch below!
We appreciate the hard work that went into assembling this video, but we do have some gripes. First of all, not every single clip in this sequence features a true visual effect (though we suppose the definition of that could be argued). For example, the clips from Creature of the Black Lagoon and The Wizard of Oz don't seem to have any visual effects, but just cool make-up or impressive sets. And some of the visual effects were poor even for their time. There's a shot from This Island Earth, the film mocked in Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Movie. Still, it's crazy to see just how the quality of these effects has improved.