Another summer, another slate of movies trying to up-sell you on bells and whistles like 3D and IMAX. First up on the blockbuster agenda is The Avengers, which — having not even opened on a single theater in the United States — has already grossed nearly $180 million worldwide. Iron Man & Co. doesn’t need your 3D IMAX dollars — but should you give it to them anyway?
My answer: No. If you’re planning on seeing The Avengers, just go see it on a regular 2D screen.
Here’s why. First off, a quick refresher about IMAX theaters (we’ve been over this before, but it’s worth reiterating every summer): IMAX has decided that the word “IMAX” refers to the entire projection system, not just the size of the screen in its theaters. As a result, the only theaters in our area with the so-big-it’s-dizzying screens are the Regal New Roc City and the IMAX Theater at Palisades Center (the latter of which isn’t even honoring the flick; it’s skipping The Avengers in favor of Dark Shadows next week). So unless you’re willing to wait in line with everyone else at New Roc City, I suggest you get thee to Fandango.
And all that waiting and elbowing for tickets and paying the trumped-up extra admission for 3D and IMAX may not even be worth it. The Avengers wasn’t filmed with 3D cameras, but converted during post-production — which, as a general rule, doesn’t make for the most impressive 3D experience (though there are exceptions).
However, director Joss Whedon promises it’ll be worth it. According to JoBlo, “Whedon knew from the very beginning his film would eventually be converted to 3D saying he thought about the format ‘every second’ while filming. Whedon is sensitive to the concerns of audiences, admitting “there definitely are movies that shouldn’t be in 3D’ while assuring fanboys ‘The Avengers isn’t obnoxiously 3D.’ ”
While it’s definitely annoying when you go to a 3D movie and see things hurtling towards your eyes every second, is subtle 3D really worth an extra $4.50 (or $6.50 if you’re springing for IMAX)? Besides, Robert Downey, Jr.’s piercing wit is something no amount of 3D can capture. Let me know your thoughts below.