Fake IMAX - be sure before you get pissed like Aziz did!
Published at: May 12, 2009, 12:54 a.m. CST by headgeek
Hey folks, Harry here... A few weeks ago, Aziz Ansari (hilarious fucking comedian) and I went Twitter to Twitter like the pair of twittertwats we are about Twittering during a movie. At the end of the twight we twissed and made up. It was all very sweet.
Today is another day - and Aziz got fucked in the eyes by AMC out of $5 for his screening of STAR TREK: THE IMAX EXPERIENCE. There's an insidious and loathsome practice that is beginning to occur with IMAX that needs to be outed. IMAX is slapping their brand on a shitload of screens that are going up. Here in Austin at the Regal Gateway - one of these NOT REALLY IMAXs is going up. Sure - it is a nice big screen, but it ain't no IMAX screen. It has nice sound, but it isn't IMAX sound. And that's the pinch.
I saw the STAR TREK: THE IMAX EXPERIENCE at the Bob Bulloch IMAX here in Austin, Texas. The image was fucking HUGE - and I'm DYING to see the new HARRY POTTER there which has scenes shot in IMAX's native format... in 3D! But my problem with the company is this.
It's like when Michael Eisner started ok-ing the direct to Video sequels to Disney classics - which have collectively been pale shadows of their originals. It began to dilute the brand. Suddenly the audience noticed that the CG movies were the quality animated films at Disney and it took getting rid of the CEO of the company - allowing that CG company to come in and run the entire animated division and well... They've come a long ways, but ultimately it'll be THE PRINCESS AND THE FROG that'll need to work to reestablish the Disney animated brand again. But there was a lot of bad blood there - and they trained the audience to wait for Home Video - and well... it hurt an immaculate brand.
IMAX - you're doing the same thing. Allowing these companies like REGAL & AMC to use your brand - it's going to create confusion and anger with audiences. Hell - I saw WATCHMEN on one of these screens - I drove 3 hours round trip to see it in GINORMOUS proportions and not only did I see it on a screen that felt smaller than my favorite screen at the Alamo South - but their sound had all the fury of a yawn. I thought about writing something at that point, but got distracted by something else in life - and let that anger and passion calm.
But reading Aziz's pissed off fury at the shitty "IMAX" experience he got at the AMC EMPIRE 25 IMAX in Burbank - he went ballistic. AZIZ was terrorized by the AMC fake IMAX experience and tells all here!
So - before checking out that NEW Imax theater - the first test you should give it is this. Stand outside the theater. Does it look like a 70+ foot screen could fit in there? If you're not sure - walk away. Until IMAX stands for what it used to - I have to caution you good folks - because - FAKE IMAX isn't worth the price jump. Real IMAX is worth it!