Is Digital Projection Saving the Cinema Industry?
Just last month Sony announced the shipping of their 10 Thousandth Digital projection system (VIA ProjectorPoint.co.uk), utilising their 4K projection system these systems are enabling cinemas to show high quality 3D and HD content. Could this be the thing that brings back the crowds?
3D cinema, love it or loathe it the Movie industry is embracing it. I fall firmly into the loathing camp, it hurts my eyes and my brain struggles to reconcile forced depth of field. My mind doesn't like being told where my eyes focal point should be. For me 3D is a passing phase that will not stick. The technology that allows it is far more exciting however.
The basis of this observation is very simple and formed by a recent cinema going experience, in this case "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2". Hating 3D as I do but loving Harry Potter I was in a quandary over whether to spend my hard earned and rapidly shrinking disposable income on it. My local cinema is old, one of the UK's early multiplexes it has tiny screens and a cinema experience akin to a cow in a slaughterhouse. Add to this the almost stratospheric cost of a family outing and you have a hard decision to make.
I am glad I made the choice to go however because one aspect of the experience blew my socks off. I am used to my movies always looking slightly blurry, motion is often smeared and once I even had to suffer 5 minutes with the voice track in view! ("Revenge of the Sith" if you care to know). Seeing the quality of Sonys 4K digital projection almost has me won over again.
My conclusion? 3D has played its part in one of the most unexpected ways. The upgrade of the projection systems is paying dividends in the quality of the image in the same way the changes from stereo to Pro-logic to DTS did for sound. If only the studios could see this and stop crippling films with 3D gimmickry perhaps we could all start going back to cinema as a 2D artform. After all did The Godfather, Ben Hur or Star Wars rely on 3D?
The saviour of Cinema is right there. Why can nobody see it?