In preparation for taking my children to the latest Star Wars movie, we pulled our copies of the original Star Wars trilogy out of storage for the kids to watch. And what did my kids think of them? One main comment: the special effects weren't very good.
Now when I was a kid, special effects were downright awful, and yet I somehow managed to look past them to enjoy all of the classic SF movies of the 50s and 60s. I know this sounds like the typical complaints of a grumpy middle-aged man about how when I was a kid ... a line of argument that goes back, I believe, to the ancient Sumerians.
But I do think that a fundamental change has taken place. Special effects have gotten so good these days that a generation has grown up to expect perfection -- a dinosaur had better look like it just strolled in from the Cretaceous, or the movie simply isn't believable. No close-ups of lizards for my kids! It's a little unfortunate, since it ruins pretty much every science fiction film made before the 1990s for everyone born after the 1990s. Netflix now offers a version of the original Star Trek with "enhanced special effects." Maybe that's the wave of the future -- retrofitting old movies with updated CGI. Goodbye, Robby the Robot, it was nice knowing you!