Just because Ryan Reynolds and Ryan Gosling have the same first name doesn’t make them the same, does it? Same way just because both Special And Visual are 2 types of effects doesn’t make them alike. Special Effects or SFX are the practical materials used during the film production. They are made on the set only like, the props, aesthetic makeup etc. While the Visual Effects or VFX are the effects which are more digitalized and computerized and are made post the production. Be it almost all Latest Hollywood movies in 2019 or just a Netflix Special Movie almost all of them use Best VFX and SFX possible to give us a realistic experience. Now take Avengers for example. If there’s an action scene that needs to be performed by the computer, but if the budget is already high (due to buying all those capes and shield for Captain America and Thor) , the filmmakers would have to use real explosives for that particular scene.
SFX are generally expensive than VFX, but even VFX programmes are no picnic for the pocket of the filmmakers as they too can cost a fortune. But then again, Hulk can’t just go on blowing and smashing off every building on the Manhattan Street, right? Hence, VFX.
SFX are tangibly created on the set to create a lifelike surroundings or situations that wouldn’t occur spontaneously. How many times have we held our breaths when your favourite actor gets shot by a bullet and blood stats to pour in along with your tears? Well I’ll save you the misery, all SFX my friend.
That WOW factor when the little raptors are almost on the verge of killing Chris Pratt and you almost bite all your nails. Save the anticipation next time, that’s all VFX (or maybe the dinos came back to take revenge after being extinct for 1000 years).
Now in this tech savvy world someone to up the game. Best Visual Effects Movies are those, that completely shake the system like Planet of the Apes consists insane amount of VFX where 20 men are jumping and running around pretending to be monkeys ( ticket for one to watch the behind the scenes footage please!). Another Hollywood movies like Avengers: Age of Ultron (my heroes everywhere!) also had insane amount of VFX to show how cool Iron Man can be in his suit (not that we don’t know already). Even the Netflix special series aren’t behind but one step ahead. Who here hasn’t seen Game of Thrones ( you haven’t? Shame, Shame Shame!) . From Flying Dragons breathing fire to Men dressed as cold and vicious Whitewalkers, all VFX.
So In short,
SFX: Special Effects are the effects which are put in manually by using materialistic props.
VFX: Visual effects are the effects which are made post the production and through digital technology such as computer softwares.