Dolby Announces Dolby Cinema with HDR Projection and Atmos - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 48 Old 12-04-2014, 09:16 PM - Thread Starter
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Dolby Announces Dolby Cinema with HDR Projection and Atmos



The most exciting news is Dolby's collaboration with Christie to make a high dynamic-range projector for premium venues.

Dolby has long been deeply involved in commercial cinema, first with sound (Dolby Surround), then with picture (Dolby 3D), and most recently back to sound (Dolby Atmos). Now, the company is putting it all together in a program called Dolby Cinema, which combines sound, picture, acoustics, and theater design into a stunning package.

The design elements were created to draw audiences deeper into the story. Theater owners can select features such as a signature entrance with a dynamic audio/video pathway that provides a new canvas for studios to begin telling the story before the movie even starts. Other features can include a wall-to-wall-to-ceiling screen, atmospheric lighting, and faceted acoustic panels designed to enhance the sound and heighten the sense of immersion. And all Dolby Cinema theaters will undergo a sophisticated visual and acoustic room treatment to optimize the cinematic experience.


A Dolby Cinema theater can have a specially designed signature entrance as imagined in this rendering.

Of course, a Dolby Cinema theater will have a Dolby Atmos sound system—in this case using Vive speakers and class-D amplification from Christie, a leading provider of digital-cinema projectors and sound systems. This gives me pause, because in every demo I've heard of the Vive system, the sound quality was quite bright, sometimes becoming harsh, and always too loud. Hopefully, these attributes will be tamed in Dolby Cinema theaters.

But what really got my attention is the announcement that Dolby is working with Christie to implement Dolby Vision high dynamic range (HDR) and wide color gamut (WCG) for commercial projection. There are few specifics about how this will be accomplished; when I contacted Christie to get more details, the reply was, "The IP [intellectual property] is confidential and we really can't talk about it until sufficient patent protection is in place. However, we can say that you need laser illumination to build an HDR projector suitable for a cinema-sized screen, because we need extra light that we can 'throw away' or trade off for improved dynamic range and contrast performance. Currently, we don't actually know the limits of what can be achieved for contrast ratio, but we can tell you it is orders of magnitude beyond what a conventional D-Cinema projector can achieve." One of the press releases associated with Dolby Cinema reveals that the system will use two projection heads with a highly customized light path—perhaps one for low luminance and the other for high luminance, but that's only a guess.

We also know that the projectors will exhibit 4K resolution and high frame-rate (HFR) capability. In addition, they will utilize a 6P (6-primary) laser light source, in which the wavelengths of two groups of red, green, and blue are slightly offset from each other. This allows the use of Dolby 3D "color-separation" glasses to isolate the left and right images without requiring a polarization-preserving silver screen, and it provides an extra-bright 2D image. According to Don Shaw, Senior Director of Product Management at Christie (and a guest on Home Theater Geeks last year), "We'll be delivering audiences a richer, more detailed viewing experience with up to 14 foot-lamberts onscreen in 3D and up to 31 foot-lamberts for 2D Dolby Vision content, far exceeding any 'ultra-bright' industry standards, to all Dolby Cinema locations."


A Dolby Cinema theater will feature a wall-to-wall-to-ceiling screen, Atmos sound, and unique design elements along with HDR/WCG imagery.

Speaking of locations, one of the first Dolby Cinema venues will be JT Eindhoven in the Netherlands. The newly constructed cineplex will open on December 15 with eight screens and a total of 1546 seats, and the premier screen will feature Dolby Vision starting in 2015, when the projector and appropriately graded titles are expected to become available.

I'm already a big fan of Dolby Atmos, and I can't wait to see HDR images in a commercial—or any—setting. For more on Dolby Cinema, check out the web page.

Here's a short CGI rendering of a "walkthrough" in a Dolby Cinema theater:


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post #2 of 48 Old 12-04-2014, 09:24 PM
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While marketing chases 4k, I'm more willing to bet I'll be ooohing and aaaahing over the posibilities of higher dynamic range. (At least, when it comes home.)

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post #3 of 48 Old 12-04-2014, 09:31 PM
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post #4 of 48 Old 12-04-2014, 09:34 PM
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Is there anything Dolby and Christie can do about the people who kick the back of my chair, the teenagers who text during movies, the know it all nerds who talk throughout the entire movie, the cleanliness of the auditorium, and the ludicrous prices that theaters are charging these days?

If not, I'll stay in the comfort of my home without the annoyance of people and high prices, thanks.
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post #5 of 48 Old 12-04-2014, 11:05 PM
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This is fantastic. I was wondering what the future of Cenima will bring to keep up with (or surpass) the coming features for home theaters. It's also nice to see that Dolby is positioning itself to be the standard in HDR. Hopefully this will trickle down to the high end consumer TVs for 2015.

Next year is looking to be a great year for us AV geeks. Wide color, HDR and better sound. Not to mention 4K BluRay. I'm really looking forward to seeing some HDR graded content with wide color with my own eyes.

Is there any word on what movies will use Dolby Vision or Atmos? So far, the biggest movie of 2015 seems to be Star Wars. It would be nice if Disney put some of these cutting edge features in that movie.
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post #6 of 48 Old 12-04-2014, 11:15 PM
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So Im guessing the Dolby Theater here in LA will be the next cinema to get the upgrade? and hopefully the Chinese Theater, oh by the way they said the Chinese Theater was going to be upgraded to a Laser based projector for one of their main screens, have they done that yet?

As others have mentioned its the HDR Im looking forward to seeing.
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post #7 of 48 Old 12-04-2014, 11:34 PM
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Imagine if they put one of those moving seat systems like the 3d rides at Universal studios. I would really love to go see jurassic world in one of these
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post #8 of 48 Old 12-05-2014, 03:14 AM
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+1 on HDR being highly desirable trickle down to home PJ's, plus wider color gamut.

Scott;
Watching the video there was a slide on "premium seating", does this mean a 2-tier ticket surcharge for better visual and/or audio in that area?
The fact "premium" was added implies at least "standard" also, the basic good/better/best marketing 101 stuff.


Looks like a well designed ground up concept, I look forward to the early reviews.
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post #9 of 48 Old 12-05-2014, 05:41 AM
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Exciting stuff and I look forward to the day when these new technologies become standard. In the mean time I would be happy if the AV Rocket Scientists could just figure out a way to meet minimum egress lighting codes without washing the screen in a red "EXIT" sign and blue step light glow.
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post #10 of 48 Old 12-05-2014, 06:00 AM
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Exciting stuff and I look forward to the day when these new technologies become standard. In the mean time I would be happy if the AV Rocket Scientists could just figure out a way to meet minimum egress lighting codes without washing the screen in a red "EXIT" sign and blue step light glow.
Sounds like a good Graduate school project for some physics/optics/other technial student.....what we need is Dolby/Other to sponsor that with a grant.
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post #11 of 48 Old 12-05-2014, 06:36 AM
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Glad to hear it, and see it. I just hope I get to hear it and see it in person. The closest Atmos theater to me is a 3 hour trip, so I'm not too optimistic I'll experience it anytime soon. The run of the mill multiplexes have gone down hill in overall presentation since the days of THX certification, so this is good news, but It will doubtless come at a premium. I would pay more though, to see a very well done presentation, that probably cost 6 figures to install and tune.
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post #12 of 48 Old 12-05-2014, 06:40 AM
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I (reluctantly) went to see Mockingjay at the local AMC (Hoffman Center, Alexandria, VA). This was shown in one of the bigger auditoriums, and I believe it uses a Sony 4k projector. The picture was just awful - dim, soft, limited dynamic range, no real blacks, and washed out colors. Right next door is the faux-IMAX theater, which throw a bright, dynamic picture using 3 panel DPL projectors on a bigger screen.


If AMC and other chains want me to buy their overpriced tickets, only to sit through a less than acceptable experience, they are going to have to up their game. Maybe Dolby Cinema is the answer. Otherwise, I'll spend my $$$ updating my home theater.
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post #13 of 48 Old 12-05-2014, 07:06 AM
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dammit I want a 10000 lumen projector in my home theater with my 160" screen. I don't think I can justifiably afford a Christie nor do I have the space for it...

I wonder when we can get brightness like this out of any "mainstream" projector?

wish list: 4K ultrabright / high constrast home theater projector.

In the meantime, I will look for this Dolby upgrade in theaters when I head to a big city...!
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post #14 of 48 Old 12-05-2014, 07:16 AM
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Originally Posted by J.Mike Ferrara View Post
I (reluctantly) went to see Mockingjay at the local AMC (Hoffman Center, Alexandria, VA). This was shown in one of the bigger auditoriums, and I believe it uses a Sony 4k projector. The picture was just awful - dim, soft, limited dynamic range, no real blacks, and washed out colors. Right next door is the faux-IMAX theater, which throw a bright, dynamic picture using 3 panel DPL projectors on a bigger screen.


If AMC and other chains want me to buy their overpriced tickets, only to sit through a less than acceptable experience, they are going to have to up their game. Maybe Dolby Cinema is the answer. Otherwise, I'll spend my $$$ updating my home theater.
I don't think the home theater "value" proposition really is a valid argument. Even a modest home theater setup will get you quite a few movies at the theater. A $2000 projector could otherwise buy you a lot of movies at the theater. This doesn't even include the cost of power, maintenance, renting or buying discs, etc.

No matter how you do the math, the actual theater isn't a bad value compared to home theater. You get a lot experience and technology for the price really.

The experience is inconsistent however with the same movie playing on various screens (and in some theaters you have no idea which screening room you are getting). In some theaters they tier the pricing based on quality and I usually go for the highest quality.

I would pay for the Dolby Cinema concept if it included an Atmos movie. At least for a family of four I would.

The theater often gives us a chance to just "Get out" also since there are really only so many family oriented venues to "do things" in America today. I suppose you could do put put golf or rollerskating or Dave & Busters... but these are even more expensive usually

I find that using local services also supports the local economy in some way so that the local wal-mart isn't the only business left in town. Give those high school kids something to do serving pop-corn otherwise they might be spending their time doing meth or whatever...

If theaters would all close down, we would wish we had them again... no matter how much folks gripe about them now. We get a lot of trickle down effects for our home theaters too, like multichannel recordings of movies which were primarily recorded for theater audiences.

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post #15 of 48 Old 12-05-2014, 07:48 AM
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The last film I saw at the cinema was the last Lord of the rings. If my town has this Dolby cinema, I might just go to a movie for the first time in 10 years.
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post #16 of 48 Old 12-05-2014, 08:57 AM
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When is it coming home cinema
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post #17 of 48 Old 12-05-2014, 09:07 AM
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This looks awesome, glad to hear it and I can't wait to see it in person.

I wonder how many seats need to be filled per showing to make it viable?

We live about 7 hours from the closest Atmos cinema, 4.5 hours from a a good sounding cinema with a great image (and clean, did I mention clean?), 1.5 hr's from a Cineplex (gouge city, for what you get/hear/see) and if it wasn't for must see now movies would never ever go into the local cinema (black seats and floors, they used to be maroon).

I wonder how tough it would be to get financing for a new single screen structure?

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post #18 of 48 Old 12-05-2014, 09:11 AM
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The "most exciting" news is . . . . I read stuff like this literally. To who and from when? To you? Today? This week? I personally find this news "exciting" and I would agree that this news is indeed interesting and when implemented fully in an attendable location, would be a potentially exciting experience.

I find it interesting that you find the sound overly bright in a Vive demo. At your age, one would expect considerable diminished high frequency hearing. Think of how bright the Vive system might sound to teenagers and young adults?

I wonder if in demos you have heard of the Vive system, the room might have been smallish leading to overly aggressive highs because of the high frequency carry distances being too small? A small additional increment of distance could substantially provide a better listening experience.
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post #19 of 48 Old 12-05-2014, 09:45 AM
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I wonder when & if these theaters will start appearing in major U.S. cities within a year or two?
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post #20 of 48 Old 12-05-2014, 10:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chirpie View Post
While marketing chases 4k, I'm more willing to bet I'll be ooohing and aaaahing over the posibilities of higher dynamic range. (At least, when it comes home.)
For TV I'd like to see the following, in order:

1) High dynamic range (for starters I want more sets to actually display the full 8 bits of range the existing content already has)
2) Native high frame rate (interpolation is a gimmick and unrealistic using plain averaging of the next and previous frame)
3) Wider color gamut (this is mostly a format standards chicken/egg problem)
4) 4k resolution

I mainly like 4k resolution not for TV as much as because laptop and desktop computer monitor specs are being dragged into the 21st century. In the early 2000s 1600x1200 resolution was not uncommon on CRTs and on early high end laptops. Then for many years it was almost impossible to get anything better than 1366x768 at any price (a huge step backwards). I still don't like the fact that computers have adopted 16:9.
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post #21 of 48 Old 12-05-2014, 10:58 AM
 
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Great, I'd love to see Dolby Vision HDR in the movies, and brighter 3D too.
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post #22 of 48 Old 12-05-2014, 11:20 AM
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Great, I'd love to see Dolby Vision HDR in the movies, and brighter 3D too.
IMAX 3D is pretty bright actually. But yeah this will be something great to look forwards to... I just hope it won't take a while to get HDR content (though part of me also hopes it takes a while to roll out so I don't regret my recent plasma f8500 purchase!)
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post #23 of 48 Old 12-05-2014, 11:22 AM
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Is there anything Dolby and Christie can do about the people who kick the back of my chair, the teenagers who text during movies, the know it all nerds who talk throughout the entire movie, the cleanliness of the auditorium, and the ludicrous prices that theaters are charging these days?

If not, I'll stay in the comfort of my home without the annoyance of people and high prices, thanks.
we have a 'VIP' theater here that's 18+ only because they serve alcohol. it's a little more money, but I think if I ever went back to a commercial theater, it'd be that one. I've heard it's a lot 'calmer' inside.


as for the OP, this sounds pretty cool, but I'm not sure I'm going to like any of it. I just hope the tech makes its way home at some point. HDR sounds good, but I've been finding the 7000:1 ANSI I get with my f8500 is already more than I can see. HDR for projection might be great, since I'm getting less than 200:1 ANSI and think it looks better than what I've seen at a commercial theater, so if HDR get it's into the 1000's:1 that it'll be a very worthwhile upgrade. the brightness though, 31ftl ??? I might have to bring shades into the theater. I've settled in at about 8ftl, and I had to get used that bright of image on my 120" screen. it was previously under 5ftl and looked great imo. 30ftl is fine on a 60" screen in a room with some light, but on a huge screen in pitch black room, well, I don't think it'll be pitch black anymore! 31ftl on that big of a screen is a TON of light coming back into the room. I'm skeptical about them getting good results with that bright of an image.

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post #24 of 48 Old 12-05-2014, 11:40 AM
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Originally Posted by GalvatronType_R View Post
Is there anything Dolby and Christie can do about the people who kick the back of my chair, the teenagers who text during movies, the know it all nerds who talk throughout the entire movie, the cleanliness of the auditorium, and the ludicrous prices that theaters are charging these days?

If not, I'll stay in the comfort of my home without the annoyance of people and high prices, thanks.
How much do you think it costs to build a theatre like this? Even in an existing facility, it would cost many $ millions. If you equate a cinema of this quality to a roadshow theatre back in the 1960s, the prices are not out of line:

To see "Camelot" in 1967 at the Warner Theatre on Broadway in NYC would cost you $4.25 to sit in the loge on a weekend night. The lowest possible price during the week was $2. Using the official inflation rate (which understates reality, IMO), that translates to $30.22 for the loge seat and $14.22 for the cheapest seat during the week. Even for an IMAX 3D movie that you reserve in advance, you're not paying anywhere near $30.

Furthermore, theatres actually make very little money. In the opening weeks of a film, they get as little as 5% of the ticket. And these days, films don't play very long. Theaters are concession stands that happen to show movies, not the other way around.

Because of that, ever shortening windows, real estate values, etc., my belief is that we're going to see a big decline in the number of theatres (in the U.S.) in the coming years. I think it's significant that Dolby's first venture with this new theatre model is outside the U.S. Decades ago, it would have been in San Francisco.

Unless you're a CEO or Wall Street Bonus Baby and have a $ million home theatre, it's unlikely that your viewing experience at home is superior to a decent theatre and there is a value to seeing a movie with an audience.

I will agree that audiences were better behaved in the past. When I used to attend some roadshow films as a kid, it was considered an event and everyone got dressed up. If you showed up in jeans and sneakers, I'm not sure they would have even let you in the theatre. And I don't think those theatres had concession stands. If they did, you weren't permitted to bring the drink/food back to your seat.

Having said that, it's now pretty rare that people bother me with their cell phones during a movie. As far as talkers go, I now find it to be a bigger problem with the elderly (80s), than with young people.
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post #25 of 48 Old 12-05-2014, 11:46 AM
 
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The 31 fl is useful for Dolby Vision HDR though to give a higher max brightness peak, that doesn't mean your eyes will be blasted with that amount of light across the entire image for any substantial period of time. They mention the have extra light to "throw away", meaning presumably it's for the specular peaks, while the average brightness remains far more manageable levels.

Your eyes can handle a lot more light than a movie theater can provide, it's just a question of the iris in your eyes being open when suddenly they get blasted by a bright light. The backlighting behind the "floating screen" probably helps alleviate that (some people use bias lighting at home too, you have better colour perception with more ambient light). And you can always add some brightness limiters or some kind of look-ahead algorithm for the bias lighting to get brighter or dimmer a short while before a big jump in across-the-screen brightness occurs.
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post #26 of 48 Old 12-05-2014, 11:58 AM
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If a commercial cinema can't do black, how can it do high dynamic range? Commercial venue safety requirements will still mandate illuminated exit signs and constant pathway lighting. These elements typically contaminate black levels on the screen. Brighter projectors can make an improvement on current cinema images, but I expect there will be viewing fatigue issues for some people if image brightness gets too high.

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post #27 of 48 Old 12-05-2014, 12:05 PM
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This gives me pause, because in every demo I've heard of the Vive system, the sound quality was quite bright, sometimes becoming harsh, and always too loud. Hopefully, these attributes will be tamed in Dolby Cinema theaters.
That's actually what I thought of the original Dolby Digital's sound, back in the 90s. Maybe they just like that sorta thing at Dolby
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post #28 of 48 Old 12-05-2014, 12:15 PM
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Two things:

-I don't think a VIP area where they serve alcohol is the answer. I've been to enough parties and sporting events to know that people generally behave worse with alcohol than when sober.

-While I commend Dolby and Christie with the new tech, I go back to my original post. The biggest impediment to theater movie watching is besides the generally terrible dreck that Hollywood has been releasing, my biggest problem is the behavior of theatergoers. I live in a major metro and I'm generally happy with the PQ and AQ of the theaters here but I've never had a recent positive experience in the theater due to rudeness.

Until Dolby and Christie find a way to install tazers in seats that buzz the rude people, I will enjoy the majority of my movie watching in my media room.
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post #29 of 48 Old 12-05-2014, 12:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GalvatronType_R View Post
Two things:

-I don't think a VIP area where they serve alcohol is the answer. I've been to enough parties and sporting events to know that people generally behave worse with alcohol than when sober.

-While I commend Dolby and Christie with the new tech, I go back to my original post. The biggest impediment to theater movie watching is besides the generally terrible dreck that Hollywood has been releasing, my biggest problem is the behavior of theatergoers. I live in a major metro and I'm generally happy with the PQ and AQ of the theaters here but I've never had a recent positive experience in the theater due to rudeness.

Until Dolby and Christie find a way to install tazers in seats that buzz the rude people, I will enjoy the majority of my movie watching in my media room.
I also live in a large metro area, attend several different cineplexes, in and around Denver somewhat regularly, and very rarely encounter problems like you describe from fellow audience members.
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post #30 of 48 Old 12-05-2014, 01:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GalvatronType_R View Post
Is there anything Dolby and Christie can do about the people who kick the back of my chair, the teenagers who text during movies, the know it all nerds who talk throughout the entire movie, the cleanliness of the auditorium, and the ludicrous prices that theaters are charging these days?

If not, I'll stay in the comfort of my home without the annoyance of people and high prices, thanks.
Second that - and to add the ear split ting DBL - why bother!
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