IMAX Matrix Reloaded


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IMAX: Matrix Reloaded
The Masked Reviewer

Sure, the Masked Reviewer has already reviewed The Matrix Reloaded.  It's been done.  But today, the film was re-released on the big big screen.  Seven stories of Keanu.  Whoa. 

The Masked Reviewer has never experienced an IMAX film before.  Sure, he's had the chance, but none of the IMAX offerings really reached out and grabbed him by the mask. 

The IMAX theater was in the Luxor, which visitors to Vegas will know as the big black pyramid thing with the flashlight on top.  The Luxor would be a good hotel to have in your pocket if you dropped your keys in the basement.  The theater is, in fact, seven stories tall.  The Masked Reviewer was seated on level five, which for those of you who aren't good at math, is five flights of stairs up.  They don't have stairs, actually, but rather a long ramp in a spiral, like a parking garage.  Once at the assigned level, people wait for the doors to open.  It's more like waiting for a theme park ride than waiting for a movie.  Also, no snacks are allowed.  Originally, the Masked Reviewer assumed that this was because the delicate IMAX technology couldn't withstand the amino acid compounds found in your Diet Pepsi, but more likely this is because of the way the theater is set up.

Each row is greatly staggered in the IMAX theater.  For someone in the row below you to obstruct your view, they'd have to be seventeen feet tall, wearing a ten gallon hat.  Each row is very narrow, with a handrail to keep you from plummeting seven stories to your death -- which makes it clear why snacks aren't allowed.  An erstwhile Junior Mint could kill someone, like a penny dropped from the Empire State Building.  Those of you who have an acute fear of heights might find the upper levels a bit daunting. 

Once seated, the handrail flashes red and then closes in on you, again like a theme park ride.  This is good, because the handrail blocks the middle of the screen when you sit.  This is bad're sealed in.  You're given instructions that if you need to leave, raise your hand.  That's a bit scary.  Especially if the movie sucks.  If you want to go to the bathroom, you're out of luck...once you leave the theater, there is no return allowed. 

A brief demo of the IMAX system followed.  It was impressive.  There were 50 speakers (in six "nodes" spread throughout the theater.  While it looked like they weren't placed for optimal surround effect, they sounded great.  Better than great, actually.  Arguably, these were the best speakers the Masked Reviewer had ever heard in a theater.  The sound effects were beautiful.

The picture was also phenomenal.  Any of you out there who are thinking of becoming actors, be aware that when you have your face on a seven story high screen, every single blemish is visible.  Little moles, pimples, pock marks, and hairs are all huge.  Keanu Reeves has really good skin. 

It seems like other IMAX films are shot in a different aspect ratio than 16:9; Matrix Reloaded didn't fill the top and bottom of the screen (like watching a letter-boxed movie on a normal screen).   Even so, it fills your peripheral vision very well.  You get a great sense of movement and the movie is more impressive in every respect on the gigantic IMAX screen.   The acting doesn't get any better, but it is bigger.

If only they allowed IMAX sized popcorn in the theater.

Reload the Matrix in IMAX and be blown away.  Seven stories of Keanu.  Whoa. 

See the plain ol' regular sized Matrix Reloaded review if you haven't seen the film.  If you have, and you've been thinking about seeing it again, it's worth the extra couple of bucks for the IMAX version.  You'll see things you never saw before (a six foot nose hair).  You'll also be blown away by the audio.  It's made the Masked Reviewer an IMAX convert. 

You can also check out the Masked Reviewer's Matrix Contest to guess the outcome of the third film, Matrix Revolutions.  Find out how the Masked Reviewer predicts it will all end by going here.


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