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Stephen Colbert's sound experience in the cinema
Old 30th April 2019
  #1
Old 1st May 2019
  #2
Lives for gear
Colbert was complaining, essentially, that the only speaker firing was C, considerably lower than 85 dB... and it sound didn't seem to get fixed until the last few minutes. (And also that the house lights were still up for the first scene of the movie.)

I'm not sure whether I wanted him to reveal the chain or not. It seemed that the manager of that particular house couldn't cope with the crowd or their job, and there was nobody there to check the projection booth while the manager was trying to corral the crowd for the next showing. Is it the chain's fault? Yes: they hired and trained(?) the manager, and also decided not to have anyone for back up who could run the theater for such an important premiere.

What Colbert didn't say, was that they gave everybody passes for another showing. Perhaps the manager didn't have the authority to do that, either.
Old 15th May 2019
  #3
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jay Rose View Post
Colbert was complaining, essentially, that the only speaker firing was C, considerably lower than 85 dB... and it sound didn't seem to get fixed until the last few minutes. (And also that the house lights were still up for the first scene of the movie.)

I'm not sure whether I wanted him to reveal the chain or not. It seemed that the manager of that particular house couldn't cope with the crowd or their job, and there was nobody there to check the projection booth while the manager was trying to corral the crowd for the next showing. Is it the chain's fault? Yes: they hired and trained(?) the manager, and also decided not to have anyone for back up who could run the theater for such an important premiere.

What Colbert didn't say, was that they gave everybody passes for another showing. Perhaps the manager didn't have the authority to do that, either.
They always give out free passes at least when I complain about technical issues which of course is far too often. I'm sure when the chains were busting up projectionists unions they figured the cost of "courtesy passes" for all the complaints they would get by not having trained personnel overseeing screenings would be smaller than having to pay for said personnel. They probably also thought that digital cinema would just take care of itself. So films are misframed, played at the wrong volume level, equipment is broken and no one notices... Why would I pay 18 dollars for this again?
Old 15th May 2019
  #4
Ya theaters are crap more often than not.
I didn't go to the movies for a decade until Alamo Drafthouse opened in NYC... Cinema is finally tollerable again.

This is why I don't understand directors that are whining about the theatrical experience disappearing... I have very few fond memories of the thearical experience... Maybe because i don't live in LA? I hear they actually give a hoot out there about their theaters?
Old 15th May 2019
  #5
Our theater in town has a "state of the art sound system" from their adverts. Unfortunately it never seems to be working 100%. The last movie I saw there was 3 years ago. I stopped going because the sound is always messed up and talking to the "manager" never seems to equate to any type of positive action. The last time I was there the center channel was not working and it sounded like the LF and RF speakers were wired out of phase. I talked to the manager after the show and he said "we just play what we are sent so if it is a "REAL" problem it rests with the motion picture company". I tried to explain that the center channel missing and out of phase speakers were probably the fault of their sound system, to which he replied "sir that is out of my knowledge base but I will discuss it with my company"

Others have complained about the same thing but get the same answer.

I buy or borrow from our town library the BluRays and watch them at home. Much better sound.

FWIW
Old 15th May 2019
  #6
Lives for gear
Consider two things re the Colbert experience:
1) The poor overwhelmed kid was likely a very low-level employee (who else would work the midnight showing) with neither the training nor the authority to deal with this. But ditto the manager, outside trying to wrangle the crowd.
2) This was a first showing. Studios typically take a lion's share of ticket money for the first weekend, and the theater survives on its concession sales. So corporate might have had a rules about massive give-backs, which would come out of their own pockets since the studio's share wouldn't change.

And...

CBS -- Colbert's network -- is owned by Viacom. Viacom's controlling stock is owned by National Amusements, which also owns AMC, Cinemark, and a couple of other theater chains. He might have been instructed to keep it anonymous.
Old 15th May 2019
  #7
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sventeck View Post
...I don't understand directors that are whining about the theatrical experience disappearing...
Granted the directors who are complaining loudest are way above the line, but this still holds:

“It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.” -- Upton Sinclair.
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