2D or Not 2D?

I’m not sorry about the terrible title. There is something about puns that I can’t resist.

I love going to the cinema and I’m fortunate enough to have friends who are willing to come with me, although, I will go on my own if I have to. I went to see Antman on my own and ended up between two couples – a little awkward. When I lived in Middlesbrough, before university, the cinema was a rare treat and I usually only went to see films that were adapted from books or the rest of my group of friends wanted to see. Since I gained my freedom (from education) going to the cinema has become a monthly thing. It’s good when you have a friend who is a big film buff and will wade through the hype and trailers, so I don’t have to.

Before I moved to Manchester, it was rare that I saw a film in 3D and I had never seen a film in IMAX. It was mainly due to general opinion in my friendship group. The difference between 2D and 3D wasn’t enough to warrant the extra cost. There was also the issue of the flimsy little glasses they gave you, it would take me ten minutes to balance them precariously in front of my own, only for them to end up crooked in the middle of an important scene because I had an itch. It was usually just better to just watch the film in 2D.

Ahh I miss the old glasses.

Since I have moved, I’ve filled the gap in my knowledge and experienced films in IMAX. Of course, there are some films that aren’t available in IMAX or even in 3D. But the variety of films that are available is growing every year. Granted, IMAX and 3D films are dominated by action and fantasy films; but there is a good reason for this. Studios have got very good at making these stunning pieces of cinematic art. Over the past few years, films have mostly lost the scenes that are ‘clearly just for 3D’; meaning that the immersion isn’t ruined when you’re watching and suddenly something flies towards the screen. It can be off-putting when you’re re-watching in your living room on a regular tv.

Yesterday, I went to see Wonder Woman. It is a great film, so go and see. I really enjoyed it – so much I am tempted to go again. It’s the first DC film I have wanted to watch and probably the only one I’ll see in the cinema – unless we count The Lego Batman Movie.  But I digress, films like Wonder Woman, and Guardians of the Galaxy etc, in my opinion, are the best kind of films to see in IMAX because everything looks so cool. The genre and stories told in such films allow for epic fighting scenes with unnecessary slow motion and way too many explosions.

Now, 4/5 of the films I see these days are in IMAX. It’s probably because of the surge in superhero films. Although, I did see Beauty and Beast in IMAX. As I mentioned before, the genres lend themselves to the media, but I do think that with its popularity on the rise, more and more films will be filmed in IMAX as well as the regular 2D. With the rapid development of VR, the immersive experience is what audiences are coming to expect. Personally, I feel more comfortable going to see a film in IMAX alone than a regular 2D or 3D. This may be because of the immersion, or maybe just the glasses. It’s harder to have a silent conversation when you look to your side and your friend is sat there looking like a fly from a 70’s film that went straight to video. The glasses put up a barrier. A 2 film is more like watching at home in a dark room only without the pause button.

All in all, deciding whether to watch a film in 2D, 3D, or IMAX depends on the film itself. I don’t think I would bother going to see a Rom-Com in 3D or IMAX. But I wouldn’t only see action films in IMAX or 3D either. For one, I do not need to see zombies in IMAX, tiny zombies on a little grey screen is more than enough for me. I know that 3D and IMAX aren’tfor everyone, I know that for some people, they can’t experience due to eye issues. But I like it, even if it is more expensive.


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