Thursday, January 5, 2012

Yay or Nay? 3D/ IMAX

So to start this out, I thought I would talk about a trend that is becoming more and more popular, to my ever growing dismay: 3D. Yeah, you probably already knew that I have a particular disdain for 3D, and have even given credit to directors like Jon Favreau and Christopher Nolan for giving the studios the finger when they are told to use it. I will admit, that the experience that 3D gives is pretty cool and does give the movies a new look as well as add to the experience... when it is done right. And that is the problem, nobody ever really does it right. You either have converted 3D or half-assed filmed 3D. My first experience with this trend was Clash of the Titans, which I saw at a midnight showing with a few friends, and since the only showings were in 3D, we had to pay the extra money. No big deal, at the time, 3D was still relatively new and we figured "what the heck? why not?" So we paid the extra money and lived to regret it. Not only was the movie itself disappointing, but the 3D didn't even add anything. There was a point where I actually took off the glasses for a few minutes and didn't notice a bit of difference. Needless to say, I was not a fan then.

But a few years later, I was offered the chance to see the latest Pirates movie at midnight and in 3D. Now the person that I was going with offered to use a free ticket that he had acquired to get me in, so I figured I would go and that would be fine. And the 3D in that was better... A bit. I had noticed a few things that were different. For instance, instead of just having stuff come out at you, they also had objects in the background appear farther back. That was pretty cool. Same thing with the last Harry Potter movie. But again, I didn't really leave the theater feeling like it was time well spent. When they advertise it, the studios make 3D sound like it will just knock you on your ass, that is how awesome it is. But every time I go see it, they always come up short. Sure, it's cool, but there is something missing that should be there. The only example that I can think of where people said that 3D actually made the movie all that much better was Hugo. I never got around to seeing the movie again like I had hoped, but every review that I read and saw said that the 3D was actually worth it. Even James Cameron admitted to it trumping his own use when he did Avatar. But again, that is one example against about a thousand of disappointments. Maybe I'm being a little too cynical about this, but I'm going off of past experience.

Now lets talk about another growing trend: IMAX. This is something that is rarely used by itself, it's usually paired with 3D, but when it is by itself, I think it is far more worth the extra money. In thinking about the movies that I liked with the 3D, I realized that I also saw them in IMAX. Again, I would have thought that this was just another tool that studios used to get extra money and would be totally worthless, but then I saw the most recent Mission Impossible movie. Originally, I went to see it in IMAX because I heard there was something for The Dark Knight Rises. When I actually saw the movie itself however, I though it was pretty dang awesome. The action actually felt more in-your-face than the thing that is used to make action feel in-your-face. In fact, I saw Mission Impossible 4 again, but in a regular theater, and to be honest with you, it just wasn't quite the same. I was spoiled by the bigger screen and the second time around was just a little underwhelming. So, for that reason, I say IMAX is pretty cool, and the fact that it is only being used every so often makes it even better.

3D: Nay
IMAX and 3D: Nay


  1. I agree that IMAX is cool but not sure it is worth the extra cash and you need to be in the right seats. Too low, too far to the side, then the experience is messed up.

    For me, IMAX nay.

  2. There is an answer to that too: a gun