Tag Archives: Imax

The Hobbit Reviews have arrived and uh oh!

8 Dec
Director Peter Jackson at the World premiere o...

Director Peter Jackson at the World premiere of the third part of Lord of the Rings in Wellington, New Zealand. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A Certified Fresh logo.

A Certified Fresh logo. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Hobbit reviews have finally been posted and so far not so good. On the web site Rotten Tomatoes which which monitors the percentage of positive reviews by critics has The Hobbit at only 70% positive thus far.

The bigger issue is that of all the positive reviews mostly have come from internet critics, such as bloggers. For example this review is positive. I’d say it’s  a little early to hit the panic button, but I’m concerned. So far top critics, which is what Rotten Tomatoes calls critics like Roger Ebert and the New York Times critic A.O Scott, have been mixed in their praise. Only 1 out of 5 reviews counted thus far has been positive. Even that one was not high praise.

So far Roger Ebert hasn’t reviewed The Hobbit;he’ll probably do it next week.

The common theme of the negative reactions has been the movie is too stretched out and too long. This makes me concerned that Peter Jackson’s appendix excuse might just be a way of disguising it as a cash grab. Normally I can live with a movie being just a cash grab–if the movie is Taken 2 or Ice Age, not The Hobbit. Another thing that worries me is that Peter Jackson has become so obsessed with making technology on this film great that he forgot to care about the story.

I’m probably freaking out a little more than I need to right now because I’ve seen the 6 new clips from The Hobbit and they’re great. I probably should not freak out until more critics see the film, and I see it myself.  I’m planning on personally seeing it twice, once in Imax 3D and  the other time in the controversial 48 frames per second. Even having read the movie’s negative reviews of the format, I have to see it at least once in this format because honestly it’s worth at least giving it a try and I don’t get sick on roller coasters.

Even though I should wait, the reviews so far do give me some reason to worry. My fear is that the film is so poorly received that the box office for parts two and three suffer and the legacy of these movies held so high by Lord of the Rings is forever tarnished.

Roger Ebert, american film critic.

Roger Ebert, american film critic. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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What the #1 box office movie of a year says more about us

31 Oct

The current #1 movie of the year 

 The #1 movie of each box office year has a lot of things in common with each other. It’s not just the type of movie they are: it also has a lot to do with us, the consumer. For example, how quickly we see a movie and the atmosphere in which we like to see movies says a lot about our culture now.

Opening Weekend

The opening weekend has become more essential to box office numbers than ever before. Spiderman in 2002 became the first movie to make $100 million, making $114 million. After Spiderman the opening weekend record has now been broken 5 times, and there are now 22 movies that have made $100 million in their opening weekend. This year’s #1 movie became the first movie to ever make $200 million in an opening weekend. All 5 movies that have broken the opening weekend record were the #1 movie of their year.

So what does that say about us, the consumer?

Instant Gratification 

We now live in a time where we can get any information we want almost right away. Movies still, despite a decline in attendance, highlight this trend. We need to see things as quickly as possible, and looking at the past #1 movies of a box office year it’s clear our demands need satisfaction right away.

This also applies to us. The internet provides you with quick information, such as this year’s #1 movie or box office predictions for The Hobbit. You can just hop onto the internet, and you can find a site like mine that will tell you this information. Here’s a question, though: why do we still see movies in theaters at all?

With our desire for instant gratification, how come most people don’t run to the internet to find a pirated copy? Why do we still mostly choose to see movies in the theater?

Theater Experience  

I mean we have to pay to see these things, so what do theater screens have that our computer screens don’t? Another interesting question is, if we hate when people talk at the movies, why don’t we stay at home where there’s a guarantee of silence?

The point I’m making with these questions is that the movie theater experience has a strong appeal. Pirated movies aren’t ending theater going altogether for some reason. For one the screens are bigger at a movie theater; the picture, and sound qualities are better as well. So seeing a movie in Imax which features an even larger screen, even bigger picture quality, and even better sound would definitely enhance the experience.

It’s an interesting feeling when you have a great theater going experience; sometimes it is almost an out of body experience. One thing about a good experience at the movies is the crowd is silent but active at the same time. This means that the audience is reacting to what’s on the screen pulling us in more instead of pulling us away. When this happens together, we join  as one. We immerse ourselves into the screen and for 2 hours nothing else has our attention but whatever world we have chosen to go to.

Budget Explosion

What else do such #1 movies of the year as Avatar, The Avengers, Pirates of the Caribbean have in common? A budget of over $200 million. This compares well with our need for a theater experience because we as consumers value quality theaters and quality production values.  The film’s production quality amplifies the theater quality, and those two can often morph into an overall quality experience.

Art Form

Film I would say is the greatest art form of the last century, and we value the power of a good movie. When we see a great movie, it can–as I said before–create an out of body experience. We as consumers value quality over anything else because what good are good special effects without a good story?

So these factor into what the #1 movie of a box office year says about us as consumers: we value an instant quality theater experience.