Ebert’s take on Avatar

posted by moviebuff82 on December 18, 2009 at 7:52 pm

Read the review here….Sun-Times Link

Notice near the end that Ebert went to see it in Digital 3D and not Liemax 3-D and says he wants to see it in true IMAX.

Cameron promised he’d unveil the next generation of 3-D in “Avatar.” I’m a notorious skeptic about this process, a needless distraction from the perfect realism of movies in 2-D. Cameron’s iteration is the best I’ve seen — and more importantly, one of the most carefully-employed. The film never uses 3-D simply because it has it, and doesn’t promiscuously violate the fourth wall. He also seems quite aware of 3-D’s weakness for dimming the picture, and even with a film set largely in interiors and a rain forest, there’s sufficient light. I saw the film in 3-D on a good screen at the AMC River East and was impressed. I might be awesome in True IMAX. Good luck in getting a ticket before February.

Comments (13)

KingBiscuits on December 19, 2009 at 12:14 am

I saw it tonight and the crowd was comparable to Watchmen back in March. Though I expect better numbers than Watchmen, the appeal isn’t as universal as Titanic. It will probably finish with $230 million with most of the gross made in the first two weeks.

Michael Furlinger
Michael Furlinger on December 19, 2009 at 1:56 am

The opening numbers are not great……

Tim O'Neill
Tim O'Neill on December 19, 2009 at 2:10 am

Justin, we live in sad times. IMAX is the latest company to sell it’s soul to the Digital Devil. Why, oh why, can’t film companies and theatre chains experiment with MaxiVision 48? I mean, back in 1927 they experimentd with sound and I guess it kinda succeeded. I mean, I suppose the movie houses back then had to spend some money installing sound equipment. I’m assuming everything worked out fine with the advent of sound. Oh well, I hope some day moviegoers will come to the realization that digital projection is tantamount to watching television. People of planet Earth: Let’s stick with tradition; let’s stick with FILM.—-Tim O'Neill

Monermaje09 on December 19, 2009 at 7:57 am

Today I saw one film. cinema hall is very nice. I really like him



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JodarMovieFan on December 19, 2009 at 1:53 pm

I don’t think its fare to compare Avatar to Titanic. Titanic didn’t open huge either but it built its audience and sustained and sustained and sustained. I hope to see this movie this weekend but with the blizzard we’re having in MD, that remains to be seen. I’m keeping an open mind and hope the movie is good at the AMC IMAX-lite I’m going to. :)

terrywade on December 20, 2009 at 3:27 pm

It’s sad that Regal Theatres has Avatar booked in reg 2-D In their big multiplex theatres in Santa Cruz & Oakland CA. Another movie theatre does have a booking in 3-D the Grand Lake in Oakland not far from the Regal Jack London Sq in Oakland, they will get the business on this film in Oakland CA. Same in the Santa Cruz CA area, most film lovers will go to Monterey CA and see the film as It was meant to be shown like in 3-D at the Cinemark Monterey CA or go to San Jose CA Every time I go to the box office of the Regal 9 in downtown Santa Cruz CA. I ask the Reegal 9 dim boxoffice people about 3-D coming to Santa Cruz they give me the worst info. They say It’s a corporate thing ??? Regal won’t get my business in these two cities nor most of the people in this big college coast town of Santa Cruz.

Tim O'Neill
Tim O'Neill on December 21, 2009 at 4:43 am

That’s an interesting story, Terry. I’m sure that sort of thing is happening everywhere. Digital projectors are very expensive and there are many theatre chains that don’t want to invest in them. In a way, I think this whole situation is hilarious. I still have a 1999 Chicago Sun-Times article about a ShoWest demonstration of digital projection and how several theatre executives predicted at the time that all theatres will have digital projection in the next “4-5 years.” Well, here it is 10 years later and maybe around 10% of theatres have digital projectors. I don’t know, maybe I’m just old-school, but I was always under the impression that video is for television and film is for movie theatres. Most Hollywood filmmakers shoot their movies on film stock. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. As I’ve said before, let’s stick with film. And don’t let anyone fool you, the film studios may save millions of dollars by releasing their product in digital, but that savings will NEVER be passed on to the consumers. You mark my word.—-Tim O'Neill

Eric Friedmann
Eric Friedmann on December 21, 2009 at 8:41 am

I’m having a dilema with whether or not I want to see AVATAR. One the one hand, it looks like the kind of science fiction story that has been recycled over and over again that is relying heavily on CGI effects more than anything else.

On the other hand, I have liked every film that James Cameron has direction so far (thought I did not see PIRANHA II: THE SPAWNING). I may decide to put my faith in the director’s track recond. We’ll see.

Bud K
Bud K on December 21, 2009 at 12:47 pm

It was a Great Movie, saw it in MiniMax in El Dorado Hills and plan to see it again, A trip to San Francisco and see it on the Metreon’s Big Imax Screen would be the perfect choice !

terrywade on December 21, 2009 at 8:51 pm

Technicolor is working on a film 3-D system for theatres not wanting to spend the $$$ on new digital equipment. All the cinemas that have spent big bucks for Digital 3-D in the last year needed to wait. The Image Iam told is just as good 3-D wise as the digital. The public can’t tell the diference as long as they have the 3-D glasses. True Imax 3-D will always look way better. Now Regal in Oakland CA and Santa Cruz can install and save money with the new Technicolor system. Regal can charge more for the glasses and save on the projector cost. Both of these towns are way behind on digital instalations much less on any other movie advances. I like the film look in a movie theatre. The big studios just want to save print and shiping cost on 35mm film. If they want Video in a movie cinema let them pay for the new Digital Projectors, not the movie theatre owners. I don’t think 3-D will last in the movie world, when It hits TV in the USA next year It will have worn It’s welcome. Lets get the studios to bring back showmanship with huge 70mm film on a large curved screen with curtains. The little screens that many multiplex’s now have are tired. Has anyone seen the new XD screens that Cinemark has in a few cities? How big are they? Some have 3-D. Iam going to see Avatar 3-D soon on one of these giant screens.

CSWalczak on December 21, 2009 at 11:15 pm

I posted an article about this Technicolor 3-D process last month; http://cinematreasures.org/news/22063_0_1_0_C/
Technicolor regards the process as a stop-gap alternative until more digital installations occur.

I don’t know if 3-D will gain a permanent place in film exhibition this time around or not; I have a sense that it will, as before, wear out its welcome when it used on pictures that don’t merit its use. I would love to see 70mm film make a come back, but I wonder if the largest segment of the cinema-going audience would really notice the difference or care. The momemtum seems very much to be in the direction of all digital.

Tim O'Neill
Tim O'Neill on December 22, 2009 at 12:51 am

You’re absolutley right, Mr. Walczak. The problem is this: the theatre chains and the film companies can’t come to terms on who’s going to pay for the installation of digital projectors in 40,000 auditoriums throughout North America. Multiply $150,000 X 40,000 audtoriums and the total amount comes to: YIKES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Giles on January 3, 2010 at 10:31 pm

well at least let’s give some credit to Cameron for reframing the IMAX version to 1.85 and give more height and use more of the screen instead of it’s 2.35 aspect ratio – those black borders can be so gosh darn annoying … ;)

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