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I went here yesterday to see Rush. The renovation they did really is amazing. The main difference is when you enter the lobby, there is only one hallway back to the theaters other then the two that were there before. That is the only major structural difference i saw.
We were in Auditorium #3 which now seats 142 people. They did not dig into the ground to add stadium. They kept the slope they had, and each row is about 6-8 inches above the row in front of it. This is not stadium seating, but more of a hybrid of slope and stadium. The seating is great…red recliners that work and are very comfortable. It looks like they took three of the old rows to make one of the new ones.
The screens are all bigger. Auditorium 3, 4 (162 seats) and 5 (162 seats) are all side masked…or should I say common height since there is no masking. I peeked into Auditorium 1 (85 seats) and they have a common width screen, which was there before. It looks as if they used as much real estate as they could for each screen which is terrific.
What was odd, was that the screen seemed curved at the edges.
The sound was terrific, i really noticed the bass where before I had not. The cost of $8 was totally worth it and I think i have my new go to cinema. All seats are reserved, and there were only 5 other people for my showing.
It now looks like an AMC. The wood paneling is gone and all traces of GCC are wiped away.
AMC Fallbook 7 is reopen today. Here is an article from the LA Times. Looks it is all reserved seating, with those big red AMC recliners, but thankfully no dinner service….I will check it out this week and get some pics if I can.
This seems to be paying of for the TCL Chinese. The theater had the highest grossing auditorium for the country this weekend!
“The Chinese gross for “Oz” marks the highest of any film this weekend for a single theater, though higher-priced Imax tickets certainly goosed grosses, as well as anticipation for the renovated theater, which now is the largest Imax theater in the world.”
I also went this weekend, Sat 430, and I have to agree with most everything Chris mentioned above. It is absolutely beautiful. The Stadium seating is a bit steeper then I had thought, and the accessible aisle in the middle of the auditorium is right where the best seating should be……..but aside from that….Gorgeous. The picture itself was amazing. The 3D just worked and was not gimmicky at all. It still feels as if you are in a grand theater from days gone by.
The seats are not as wide as Arclight, but there is way more leg room and they recline a bit. There was about 600 or so people, with everyone applauding, booing the witch and clapping throughout the film’s run time. It was so special to see this many people in the auditorium…last time I have seen this many (aside from the TCM festivals) people here for a screening was when Titanic came out.
There was no masking for our showing either, but when the film ended, the curtains did close. It took a few minutes for them to shut, and when they did, people CLAPPED…clapping for curtains! I was in dork heaven.
RUN and see movie here. For the first time in forever I felt as if I got my moneys worth for a 3D showing.
When I think of what “could” have happened here, I only have to look down the street on Hollywood Blvd.. The Chinese dodged a bullet and yes it’s an IMAX with stadium ish seating, but I will take that any day over what could have been…such as…
1) The Egyptian – the restoration was horrific and although they saved that beautiful theater, they essentially ruined it. That awful steel structure frame and terrible seats with no leg room and bad stadium seating. The first time I walked into the Egyptian, Oklahoma was playing in Todd AO on a 90 foot screen. Almost half of the screen they have there today. At least they still show 70mm now and then, if your lower back can take it.
2) The Vogue – One of my high school haunts, great little theater that is now a disco…
3) The Pantages – Fantastic restoration but only shows musical touring shows so the chance to see a movie there again is nill.
4) Pacific 3 – Home of LA’s original Cinerama, now carved up, sad and shuttered.
This is what could have happened to the Chinese.
That is the prism I’ll look through when I go the Chinese…I don’t really care about 2K or 4 K (ok i do, but not enough from keeping me away), IMAX, Digital or Film. As long its its open, there is NEW product, there are people there enjoying themselves and they stay in business and don’t let it go to hell like the Dome did, I will be happy.
Has anyone read the reviews about Wiz OZ in IMAX? Its at a 99% on RT. I was skeptical of it at first,I thought just seeing the new Chinese would be enough, now Saturday cannot come fast enough!! Once I am there I will happily purchase my tickets for Gravity, since I am thrilled that I do not have to suffer through anymore 3D showings in the Dome, I have emailed Arclight 3 times and I get the same response…“we have no control over the format that plays in the Dome.” yea right.
I am getting more excited about seeing all the changes this weekend, the blog review above was great, as well as the pictures that have been floating about. Is it too much to also wish for comfortable seats?
I was just going to comment on that Chris. I noticed it when I saw Elysium and this Sunday I saw Worlds End and it was really noticeable. Not sure I am a fan of the new masking, I think it makes the screen seem a bit smaller.
Cliffs, you make a good point, but you forgot that the Universal IMAX is now projecting in digital, using a Barco projector which can only get to 1.9. They cant use their full screen height anymore, a screen with no masking.
Hey Big Joe, what about the Grand Lake Theater in Oakland? Opened in 1926 and still going strong.
After sitting in the Chinese auditorium too many times on opening weekends this past year with maybe a grand total of 30 other people, it will be fantastic to see this theater filled with other movie goers again.
Like many others, I too want to magically walk back into 1979 and see the Chinese filled with crowds of people watching a 70mm 6 track Dolby Stereo movie….but that aint going to happen.
I spent most of my opening weekends this summer at the Village since I wont pay for 3D at the Dome anymore…It will be nice to go back to the Chinese..I just hope they keep it under $20. (HA!)
the AMC Fallbrook 7 is closing on July 7th for the remodel and updating. I was there on Sunday night and they had a sign on the box office. The cashier told me that they expect the cinema to be closed about two months until the reopening sometime in September.
I wonder if they will reopen with the Wizard of Oz, that seems fitting considering it premiered here in ‘39.
Just read this at http://www.imax.com/community/blog/the-wonderful-wizard-of-oz-is-coming-to-imax-3d-theatres-for-the-first-time-ever/
Warner Bros. and IMAX® are partnering to bring one of the most beloved films of all time to IMAX® theatres for the very first time. To celebrate the 75th anniversary of The Wizard of Oz, this iconic film will be released in IMAX® 3D theatres for an exclusive one-week engagement across North America beginning September 20, 2013.
Anyway want to guess the number days till they yank the IMAX 15/70 projector out. The last one in LA.
Hey guys, the LATHF is working with them to ensure they do it right. They are also holding an event here on 4/20.
Check out http://www.lahtf.org/2013-movie-making-movies.html
I was able to check out the new laser projection demo in the ETX auditorium yesterday. From my earlier post, you can tell I was not a fan of this locations' ETX screen. It was nice to actually see the Dolby ATMOS trailer played, and I did notice the sound was much more intense then it was last week, and the extra surrounds were quite noticeable.
As far as the Laser projection, it is different. First off, it is much much brighter. So bright, that at times the light coming from the booth hits your 3D glasses and it seems like someone has their smartphone on in the row behind you. The picture though, was phenomenal! This was a crappy film (g.I.Joe 2) that had a 3D conversion, and yet the 3D was amazing. Even the dark scenes weren’t dark. Then again, in these digital times, I find it odd that watching a movie in the proper light is something that is unique and worth noting, when I feel that should just be the norm.
Fascinating that Christie got the first theatrical demo of laser projection and not Barco. This theater needs it. I came here last week to see OZ in Dolby Atmos. There was no trailer for Dolby Atmos, the staff had no idea if it was playing (even though it was advertised), and it even seemed like the bass and right surrounds were so muted you could barley make them out. Also, the left corner of the screen was way under lit and I had the privilege of paying $17.50 to experience one of the worst presentations i have ever seen.
I will try and check out this new laser Demo next week and report back if I make it. I swore I would never go back, but darn it, now i am curious.
This week Laemmle Fallbrook is showing The Untouchables in 70mm!
Mon to Wed, 3 shows a day. Was hoping to get here before AMC took over, and this is a perfect way to usher this cinema out in its current form!
Shouldn’t we pleasant to one another on this board ?
Speaking of Screen Sizes, it appears this one is getting bigger.
In the LA Times this morning, it appears the new owners sold the naming rights. For $5 MILLION dollars, a Chinese tech company gets to name this The TCL Chinese Theatre.
It appears that the new owners are taking the money and making improvements to it at least. This is from the end of the article.
“Planned improvements include a new extra-wide screen, stadium seating, superior sound and projection systems, and a new box-office marquee on Hollywood Boulevard.”
Taking out the Graumans name, and adding Stadium seating scares me a bit. However, I highly encourage a new huge screen.
We saw the 4pm showing yesterday. There were about 300 people or so in the auditorium. Since I am one to watch the LOTR trilogy over and over, I was going in with very high expectations. This exceeded every expectation my friend and I had. The 48fps HFR did get some getting used to, I understand the comments of it being too ‘video’ looking, yet on the other hand I have never seen 3D that looked so real and smooth, and with no eye strain at all. I didnt take my glasses off for the entire length of the film, it was as if you forget it was in 3D. The nearly 3 hour run time just flew by. The manager told me that the tech team from Warner Brothers was in the theatre all week calibrating the projectors and sound and it showed.
It was great to see a new film at the Chinese full of fans, people were yelling and clapping during the titles, when Gollum showed up and at the end.
Everyone will have their own opinion as to whether or not the HFR will work. Sure, it seemed a bit video gamey at time…and there were times I was expecting the cast of Upstairs Downstairs to show up and serve tea, but for a movie about trolls, hobbits, goblins and mountain giants….I think a little suspended disbelief adds to the tale. BTW…the sound was just amazing….the new THX trailer was great too.
Bought my tickets for The Hobbit and found out there is NO reserved seating for this engagement in the main theater, only upstairs at the 6 plex. We are going old school and waiting in line at the Chinese on opening weekend….guess there are worse things…. :)
All Hobbit info is at
They list all theaters that will be playing this in each of the 5 formats and if it has Dolby Atmos. What I still don’t get, is they list IMAX and IMAX3D. I have never seen an IMAX theater not play a movie in 3D if it was available. Also, it is not made clear if the IMAX version will be HFR.
All I know is that The Hobbit will play the Chinese, I will be seeing it there and I am thankful for that!
If I am reading this correctly, THE HOBBIT will open here in December, in High Frame Rate 3D. Tickets are on sale now and are $19. This is the first Christmas in a few years they will be getting a genuine box office hit, that Arclight didnt snag. Looking forward to this, finally!
Thank you John Sittig for the fantastic Cinerama Festival this week. I attended This is Cinerama on Sunday night and just got home from seeing IAMMMMW in 70mm. Sunday was sold out and tonight was close it it. It was fantastic to see these great films (well ok, TIC is not that great, but it is fun) presented how and where they should be shown!
It was announced Sunday that you will be retiring, and I wanted to personally thank you for decades of the best projection and sound possible! Thank you for your dedication and hard work on restoration so people like myself in 2012 can actually see Cinerama movies in 3 strip Cinerama! Some of my most treasured memories happened on your watch at the Dome over the past few decades, and I wish you much happiness in your retirement!
This theater is closing on Monday the 28th, 2012.