Qiao and I went to see The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug movie yesterday, in the IMAX 3D HFR (high-frame-rate) format.This page
explains the different formats that the Hobbit movies are being shown in at different theaters.
We went to see the IMAX version of the movie, as no other theaters in my area were showing the movie in HFR.
My impressions of the movie technology:
1. 3D : Seeing the movie in 3D was neat and worthwhile, although the glasses were annoying (see below).
2. HFR : I can't say whether the HFR part made any difference to my movie experience - I didn't notice any difference in detail from other movies.
3a. I wouldn't choose to watch a movie in IMAX next time, unless it was really shot in IMAX. What they call IMAX nowadays pales in comparison to the large curved screens with steep seating that I remember from when I was a kid. Now, IMAX seems to simply mean a taller than usual flat screen, with regular seating.
3b. As this movie wasn't filmed in IMAX, I wonder how they converted it to fit on the IMAX screen - do they crop out part of the picture to make it fit?
3c. The IMAX 3D glasses have one vertically polarized lens and one horizontally polarized lens. My left lens had 3 or 4 annoying streaks of vertical light, apparently reflections from the lights in the room. (Qiao's glasses were the same way, so it's unlikely that I simply had a bad pair of glasses.) Once the lights were darkened for the movie, the streaks weren't as bad, but were still faintly there. From what I've read, non-IMAX 3D movies use circularly polarized lenses, so I assume they wouldn't have this problem. In retrospect, I wonder if me seeing those vertical streaks of light is related to my astigmatism.