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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
With this movie opening today, I'm trying to figure out the difference in what is being advertised as "digital 3D projection" and the one theater RealD shows on their website ( http://www.reald.com/ ) in this market as having the full 3D projection system, which is a 45 minute drive (past 10 other theaters) from my house. Has anyone seen the movie, in RealD 3D or otherwise?


John
 

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RealD is just a specific brand of digital 3D projection. I doubt you'll see any difference in the results.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Well, I thought the same thing but have read reports that they actually dropped "3D" from the title of the movie as theaters have been slow to convert an appropriate number of screens. When I called the one Regal Cinema that had the RealD set-up, they told me that the Regal and other brand theaters in town showing the movie are just using digital projection without 3-D glasses, etc. Regardless, I'm making the drive to the "real" theater so I'll report back. Thaks for your feedback...


John
 

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Our local theater-plex is showing it in 3-D, one of only 3 places in the state.
 

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Did Beowulf have better 3D quality than Journey Center of Earth 3D?


"With a few exceptions such as the authentic IMAX process, 3-D remains underwhelming to me -- a distraction, a disappointment and more often than not offering a dingy picture." --roger ebert
 

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I saw BEOWULF in RealD 3D at the Rave Theater.


Then I saw it in IMAX 3D at the Imax Theater.


I felt both viewings were comparable, and if I had sat closer for the RealD 3D viewing so the screen filled more of my field of vision, I don't think I would have been able to tell much difference. The RealD 3D glasses are lighter and more comfortable (and disposable/keepable) than the IMAX ones, but the IMAX ones are fine, too.
 

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The oldest 3D effects from the 1950's used Red/Blue color seperations and Red/Blue glasses. Quite primitive but interesting in the sense that these 3D effects could (kinda) be broadcast over the air or recorded onto video tape - as long as the viewer used the glasses to view the two images, the 3D effect was present on your TV screen.


Later color 3D systems were very costly to use - two side-by-side 35mm cameras with synchronized shutters, twice the expense in film and processing and film distribution and requiring synchronized dual projectors. The two images were projected using oppositely polarized light, and viewed with polarized glasses that effectively dimmed the R image in the L eye and dimmed the L image in the R eye. Your brain overlapped them by causing your eyes to go slightly crosseyed in the theater under the glasses.


In practice 35mm 3D was more than 2X as expensive as filming flat 35mm, because you can make mistakes like unsynchronized cameras that require re-shoot, and the optical special effects used on film must be done twice - but slightly differently, to preserve the 3D effect.


RealD 3D is an entirely digital process. The RealD 3D camera is actually two smallish digital cameras mounted side-by-side. Two seperate images are captured for the R and L perspectives at 1080p24, but recorded into the same video file. Digital special effects are simple, and are inserted into the digital master using the same software and workstations used for the animated film Beowulf (the very first RealD 3D film). RealD 3D offers the same advantages of digital distribution (inexpensive and entirely secure) but because of the two seperate 1080p24 image streams, the digital files occupy twice as much space on the theater server as flat digital films.


RealD 3D projection uses two polarized light sources, one for R and one for L images, and they simultaneously illuminate two DLP mirror arrays. Both R and L image streams are projected from the same lens and projector. The same polarized glasses used for the dual 35mm 3D system can be used to dim the image intended for the other eye. In fact the two image streams are triple clocked to 72Hz which is even faster with less flicker than double-flashing 24fps 35mm film to 48Hz.


RealD 3D projectors can be made compatible with earlier 35mm 3D films (by capturing digitized frames from both films) and RealD 3D digital movies could be printed onto R and L 35mm film prints for earlier 3D theaters. But using the RealD 3D technology from beginning to end is the best and least expensive plan. Note that flat movies are also compatible with the RealD 3D projector if they are digital "prints", and the glasses are not required.


I thought the first RealD 3D film Beowulf was OK, and the 3D technology interesting enough to make it enjoyable - but I was never tempted to watch it again at home in the flat version. Likewise the second film was a Hannah Montana concert film of no interest to me - even though it was the first live action photography in RealD 3D. Journey to the Center of the Earth being the second live film. In fact I have seen several flat digital movies in that same theater, the first being the Disney film Eight Below.


I'm going to see "Journey" in RealD 3D on Tuesday night and I'll be comparing it to 35mm and IMAX 3D systems I have seen in the past.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Gary, thanks for the explanation. Interesting stuff.


I just got back from the RealD theater and the 3D effects were alot of fun. The movie was about what you'd expect...


John
 

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Yah I was expecting a rather ordinary film. Not to mention the Jules Verne book is a childhood favorite and I actually like and own the 1959 version of the film. That is really the only classic Hollywood "big budget" version, and in spite of the fact it features Pat Boone who does in fact break into song a couple of times, the restored DVD is very entertaining.


The Brendan Fraser "Journey" is actually the ninth version when you count the many TV productions. It seems that "Journey" and the Arthur Conan Doyle book The Lost World are the two most popular remakes since cheap digital special effects came about. Both are old enough for the source book to be in the public domain and both are ideal vehicles for digital effects.


But I find the newer versions of both stories lack style, and with the likes of Treat Williams and Ricky Schroeder starring in them, are lacking in skilled actors as well. I also think moving the setting from the 19th Century to the 21st in the present "Journey" a questionable choice.


But I'm a sucker for video technology, I'll see it in a theater. But I hope that Hollywood understands that 3D technology alone will not reliably make an average movie into a bigger box office attraction. That will suck in a few videophiles like me but ultimately the entertainment value must be there or the film will fail.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary McCoy /forum/post/14272431


I thought the first RealD 3D film Beowulf was OK, and the 3D technology interesting enough to make it enjoyable - but I was never tempted to watch it again at home in the flat version. Likewise the second film was a Hannah Montana concert film of no interest to me - even though it was the first live action photography in RealD 3D. Journey to the Center of the Earth being the second live film.

Don't forget Chicken Little, which started production as a 2D animated film and then switched gears to have the footage processed by RealD into a simulated 3D that was virtually indistinguishable from a native 3D production. They claim they can do the same with live action footage, and George Lucas had scenes from Star Wars converted to 3D as a test, but I believe has since given up his plans to 3d-ify the entire series.
 

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The original/James Mason/Pat Boone Journey was a childhood favorite/classic, even if it didn't have enough dinosaurs (the main attraction for me).


I don't know what kids of today would think of it or of Disney's 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, etc. Those were the "family"/"adventure" films I grew up with. Some hold up well. Others, like the 1960 version of The Lost World, probably look pretty bad these days.
 

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Saw this one earlier today. It isn't anything more than what it is: a 3D movie. The 3D gags are not subtle at all, but it works for this movie. Brendan spitting mouthwash atcha? CHECK! The yo-yo? CHECK! Falling rocks? CHECK! Now, this was my first 3D movie since the 80's, when Jason shot a freaking SPEAR GUN at you, so I couldn't compare it to recent attempts, but it worked virtually the entire time. Plain and simple, this is a throw-everything-but-the-kitchen-sink at you 3D movie, and that isn't always a bad thing. Not a good movie, but a fun time for me and my daughter on a hot Saturday morning.
 

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Saw it with my boys (8 and 11) today. The kids LOVED it, and I thought it was fun. Great movie? Heck no. But a few of the 3D gags made me jump and one made me scream like a little girl. Very similar look and effect quality as some IMAX 3D versions I've seen.


They did some previews of upcoming films in 3D also - including Disney's Bolt, which looked fantastic. We'll pay to see that one in 3D as well...
 

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Thanks for the short 3D primer Gary.


With 2 light sources and 2 separate DLP arrays, I take it the projectors are highly specialized and expensive (although probably not as expensive as 2 completely separate projectors, which you'd have to converge anyway).


I guess this explains the limited availability of this one in 3D.


I think there's one in my town though and I intend to check it out (and check my brain at the door)



Cary
 

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Considering my local multiplex charges ~$10 for digital 3D movies (on one of their smallest screens) I'd rather go across the street and pay $11 to see IMAX movies instead.
 

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I think the most encouraging thing about RealD 3D is that this single-projector technology is completely extendable into a Home Theater. If somebody were to extend the Blu-Ray specification to allow distribution of twice-as-large 3D movies, if you wore the glasses and owned a RealD 3D projector, you would get the exact same experience at home as the theater, but with all the advantages such as convenience and superior surround audio.


I want RealD 3D home theater projectors!
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary McCoy /forum/post/14286559


I think the most encouraging thing about RealD 3D is that this single-projector technology is completely extendable into a Home Theater. If somebody were to extend the Blu-Ray specification to allow distribution of twice-as-large 3D movies, if you wore the glasses and owned a RealD 3D projector, you would get the exact same experience at home as the theater, but with all the advantages such as convenience and superior surround audio.


I want RealD 3D home theater projectors!

I'm sure someone is working on this or something similar as we post about it.
 

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Well. it was interesting. The 3D effects are still wildly exaggerated IMHO, like a gimmick. Many scenes appear to be divided into distinct zones such as foreground/midground/background, and all three of these zones are simultaneously in sharp focus. Others have only two zones, a few have little 3D content at all. "Natural looking" is not a description I would apply to this process.


I would like to see a film now where the 3D feature is used as a simple enhancement versus a gimmick.

Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show) Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show) As for the film itself - it has a rather thin plot and it does incorporate some elements of the Jules Verne book not seen in other films. The updated plot is rather that they are recreating the classic journey, initially as disbelievers to the "Vernian" cult.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary McCoy /forum/post/14300056


Well. it was interesting. The 3D effects are still wildly exaggerated IMHO, like a gimmick. Many scenes appear to be divided into distinct zones such as foreground/midground/background, and all three of these zones are simultaneously in sharp focus. Others have only two zones, a few have little 3D content at all. "Natural looking" is not a description I would apply to this process.


I would like to see a film now where the 3D feature is used as a simple enhancement versus a gimmick.

Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show) Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show) As for the film itself - it has a rather thin plot and it does incorporate some elements of the Jules Verne book not seen in other films. The updated plot is rather that they are recreating the classic journey, initially as disbelievers to the "Vernian" cult.

Well said Gary!. "gimmick" fits perfectly as they tried to enhance a paper thin story line with 3-D effects. I thought Beowulf's presentation was much better. I hope studios continue to develop 3-D effects in some movies as it has got really dynamic potential.. I want it in my HT also!!
.
 
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