By Heath McKnight (doddleNEWS)
Just to get it out of the way: This isn’t a review of Jurassic World; make sure you read Danny F. Santos’ review. I’m writing a review of the 3D conversion of the film, which was performed by the same company who did the excellent 3D conversion of Jurassic Park’s 20th anniversary, back in 2013.
I’m a huge fan of the original Jurassic Park, both Steven Spielberg’s seminal movie and Michael Crichton’s legendary book. I was 17 the summer it opened, and I remember the anticipation as the June 11, 1993 release date crept closer and closer. It blew away all of my expectations, and became what some refer to as ‘my Star Wars.’ Meaning, just as Star Wars blew audiences away and changed cinematic history in 1977, so, too, did Jurassic Park, and affected fans like me in the same way.
The Lost World: Jurassic Park was a huge disappointment, not only because it’s such a meh movie — and book, but because my expectations were so huge. Jurassic Park 3 was enjoyable, if forgettable, and the Spinosaurus was pretty scary.
The closest I’ve gotten to reliving that first time seeing Jurassic Park 22 years ago, was in the spring of 2013 when Spielberg and Universal released a 3D version of the film in theaters, with a 3D conversion done by Sterio D, who also handled 3D conversions for The Avengers, Iron Man 3, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, and more.
I saw it in a brand new IMAX 3D theater, and between the excellent converted stereographic images and killer sound, I was transported back to 1993. The T-Rex’s roar rattled my teeth and bones, the 3D worked great, and I could relive that magic. The only downside, and it was just one that I can recall, was the scene in the slide projector room during lunch, there was a projector light in the background that popped off the screen, as if there was a mistake with what was 3D in that scene.
So that brings us to Jurassic World, whose 3D conversion was also done by Sterio D. I saw Jurassic World 3D at a theater that featured RealD technology (polarized 3D), but it wasn’t with the biggest screen, but that’s okay. The film isn’t widescreen, more ‘flat’ (projectionist term; widescreen was called ‘scope’), and that may have helped things with the 3D conversion. You aren’t lost in the frame, trying to focus on things.
Here’s a video featurette on Jurassic World’s 3D via RealD:
I don’t want to spoil anything from the movie that hasn’t been seen in the trailer, but the only time things got too blurry for me was some of the Raptors in the dark scenes — too dark, too many cuts, and I lost track of the action, which is a result of the 3D breaking the rules.
The only problem I had was that it didn’t feel like the image ‘popped,’ like IMAX 3D does. Even if it’s post-converted, IMAX 3D offers dual-projection vs. single-projection, so the 3D image quality doesn’t ‘degrade.’ Check out this video:
In some ways, I want to watch Jurassic World again in IMAX 3D, because I know I’ll get more ‘pop.’ But the RealD 3D experience was great. The dinosaurs and action really were enhanced, and I enjoyed it much more than 2D. Stereo D handled the conversion well, and was able to control things that would ‘break the rules of 3D’ by ‘flattening it.’ The action and sound was terrific! It felt a little more subtle and natural, but the action popped a tad more, though I feel IMAX 3D, and that sound system of theirs, will really make Jurassic World an immersive experience.
Overall, if you’re going to pay the premium price of 3D, which is a fad that’s slowly fading as 4K and other Ultra High Definition formats gain popularity, I suggest trying to find a digital IMAX 3D theater. But RealD works just fine, too. If you’re not 100% sure you want to pay a hefty surcharge for 3D, just stick with 2D — the movie was shot on 35mm film, and features a great story and visual effects, and I thoroughly enjoyed the Indominus Rex!
Jurassic World is now showing.