Computer Generated Images or CGI are used in many movies today, not just the big budgeted summer blockbusters.
But nothing can take a viewer out of movie as quickly as bad CGI effects. Some directors, like Christopher Nolan, like to film as much practically and only use CGI to round out a sequence, e.g. Inception's train barreling through a downtown Los Angeles street was accomplished with a real big rig truck with a train facade built around it; CGI was used for the trains wheels and the asphalt churned up by them.
Cracked.com has a fun article about "7 Amazing Movie Special Effects You Won't Believe Aren't CGI" with a look at some way cool non-CGI effects sequences from, among others, The Dark Knight Rises, Skyfall and the classic Tron.