So that's the anticipation I had going into this film. I truly was excited to watch this as well as experience it in IMAX 3D. Something about deep space aliens and people helplessly being chased by them sparks something in me. Blame it on being a guy, but I find great pleasure in watching this fictional battle take place because I know it'll never happen. And thus, I'm entertained!
Cruising over to AMC Loews 34, I was awkwardly told by the movie man tearing the tickets that I had to wait in line before I could enter. Asking whether or not the movie was going to be that packed, he replied, "No, it's 74% empty right now." So why the line…like sheep waiting to be slaughtered, everyone (and by everyone I mean twelve people…) stood waiting with tickets in hand, eyes rolling, and impatiently scoffing.
After being let in and finding my seat, I realized this wasn't the "true" IMAX I grew up with in Boston. Just a bigger screen with better sound, but it still blew away normal theaters. My anticipation grew as I twiddle the 3D glasses in hand, awaiting the signal from the movie to don my specs.
The movie begins and the best moment of the night appears on the screen…
"The following trailers have NOT been enhanced for IMAX Theater viewing and have NOT been enhanced for listening. Thank you." Out of nowhere a man screams, "Dammit! I want my money back!" I died laughing and missed most of the first trailer replaying that in my head over and over. Priceless.
The movie went on without a hitch and I must say that the entire time I was unfortunately fixated on how my leg was cramping up and how too few aliens existed in the movie. The visual and sound effects were stunning. Breathtaking at parts and in 3D, fugeddaboutit! But I was hoping for more connection to the original storyline, not aimless pursuit of, how the characters said, "finding the source of where the human race came from…" And the story confused me. The deaths and turning points in the film happened, but with no purpose really. And they only gave me more reason to stay fixated on the muscle that would not stop spasming in my left leg. I mean come on leg, why pick a two-hour movie where I clearly can't do anything about it to give me issues?!
I realized after 90 minutes, when I stole a glance at my watch (I always tell myself not to do that….) that I had so far seen nothing and remembered nothing that made me care about the movie. I wasn't affected when characters were incinerated, smashed, impregnated with aliens, performed open-chest surgery on themselves or even blew themselves up to save mankind.
The movie did not touch me on that emotional level that makes us walk out of theater breathless, changed, almost electrified with excitement. No. I left annoyed that my leg was still cramping and laughing about the pissed-off guy who wanted to see movie trailers enhanced for IMAX viewing and listening. And it made me sad that I gave myself such a high expectation of what the movie would be like, the experience I'd have, the fear that I would succumb to. But nothing. Nada. Zip. My night was not full of fear or aliens or even joy in the success of beating the aliens and saving mankind.
So if you want a movie to see, I'd recommend waiting for the DVD or a day when you have movie passes. I was duped by this film and started the year of movie watching off on a bad note but there are still 13 more gems to experience. Let's hope my left leg cooperates next time.