A trip to see the latest movie is no longer an affordable date night, or cheap option for family fun night. Movie prices have been steadily rising for decades now, and once you buy a drink, candy, and popcorn for a $10-15 average cost per person, you have put quite the dent in your bank account. Now moviegoers have an additional choice to make – “Should I see it in 3D?” Now you are talking about an additional charge that can cost between $3-$7.
Currently, close to one-fourth of the films touring theatres nationwide will be in 3D, most likely without the standard (and cheaper) viewing option available. With choices ranging from kids’ cartoons to adult indulgences such as Jackass, it seems people can’t get enough of this third dimension, but is it really worth it?
The 3D Experience
When arriving at a 3D showing, be prepared to wait in line. This holds particularly true for films at the Avatar and Harry Potter level of popularity. You’ll also receive a pair of oversized, goofy shades which are sure to raise your status to most popular kid in town in no time. Truth be told, these glasses have come a long way since their creation in the 1950’s and could now be mistaken for the pair of Ray Bans you sported on the way into the theatre. Strides have been made to ensure proper fit for women, men and children, but there is still work to be done on the overall comfort level of these frames.
Once the film starts, even the previews are in 3D. You are transformed to a whole new world of floating popcorn, falling off the edges of cliffs, and animals headed straight for you. If you look around you, you’ll notice fellow audience members reaching out in front of their face, and hear “ooohs” and muffled yet excited yelps throughout the theatre. The sad part is that this excitement and newness wears off after just a few minutes. In fact, I have found myself occasionally wishing for a “break” from all the overstimulation. Towards the end of Avatars’ 3 hours, my neck was strained and I had a serious headache from all the movement. My only option was to close my eyes for a few seconds, fight the nausea, and rejoin the battles within Pandora.
At the end of the film, you remove your glasses, navigate your way toward to exits and drop them into the receptacle to be sanitized and reused.
More 3D films were released in 2010 than in any other year, proving the rising demand for this type of viewing. It is both exciting and scary to think of what may around the bend as the next big thing in cinematography, and how long 3D will remain supreme. If you are planning on checking out a movie in 3D, Instead of spending the additional money for a basic 3D experience, considering spending another $1 extra for the IMAX experience (now available in many standard theatres) and get the third dimension, the big screen and amazing sound all in one.