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Reviewed November 13, 2015
Reviewed December 21, 2015
Reviewed November 12, 2015
What You'll Get
Today's Groupon is a great deal on tickets to see a movie at Chicago's IMAX Theater for only $8: 47% off the normal $15 price. You can use this Groupon to see any show from now through February.
In case you didn't know, IMAX is a one-of-a-kind cinema experience. Many film-enhancing gimmicks have come and gone, but IMAX tops them all and is surely here to stay. Indeed, when viewed next to IMAX's glorious reality enhancing mega-screen, Smell-O-Vision and other gimmicks of yesteryear have been rendered irrelevant.
Take the failed film gimmick Sensurround, for example, where large sub woofers would blast extremely low frequencies during earthquake or plane crash scenes and physically shake the viewers. This ill-fated attempt at mimicking reality significantly damaged many theaters and made a number of moviegoers ill, even cracking the ribs of one tragically frail patron. Today, such risks are no longer necessary, as IMAX surround sound recreates real life audio much more accurately and without those undesirable brown notes.
Or take the classic Percepto effect, where live electrical currents were shot into the seats, shocking random audience members so they'd scream during the climactic scenes of movies such as The Tingler. In the theater version of The Tingler, a film about a small, crustacean-like creature that lives in people's spines and occasionally escapes in order to scare people to death, the lights would cut out and protagonist Vincent Price would screech, "The Tingler is loose in THIS theater! Scream! Scream for your lives!", a cue for the buzzers to go haywire. This ridiculous and potentially hazardous gimmick is no longer necessary. Indeed it has been replaced by the spine tingling effect of IMAX's sheer size alone. In fact, for the upcoming IMAX showing of the new Keanu Reeves apocalyptic thriller The Day The Earth Stood Still, at one point the movie stops and co-star Jennifer Connelly screams "Keanu Reeves is loose in THIS theater! And he's a giant! Scream for your lives!" But there is no need for electrocuting the patrons, because all they have to do is show Keanu's image on the gigantic screen, and everyone can practically see inside his facial pores, like he's right next to you, and then everybody freaks out. It's great, as is the rest of that movie, I'm sure.
But IMAX isn't just blockbusters on a big big screen. Also, they screen plenty of movies & documentaries that stimulate children and adults alike.
There's a few exciting movies playing right now at IMAX, including Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa, a pretty cool-looking cartoon. It's highly likely that your kids are gonna like it, it being a cartoon and all. While I'm incapable of imagining what it's like to see cartoons at IMAX scale, I'm confident that it is awesome. Don't you wish they had this for cartoons when we you were a kid? Can you imagine how much cuter Little Foot from The Land Before Time would be if he had been 40x bigger? Or how much more majestic Ariel would have been if she was 40x bigger? Man, they should totally redo Little Mermaid for IMAX. They should get Julianne Moore to be Ariel because she has red hair just like her. And they should get Michael Phelps to be a stunningly sexy merman to accompany Ariel in the cold sea. Wait, that already happened. Well they should get it up on IMAX then. But if that doesn't happen before your Groupon expires at the end of February, you can still take the kids to see Under the Sea, which though disappointingly includes neither the classic song it's named after, nor the song's Caribbean icon Sebastian the Crab, still has some pretty amazing shots of the coral reef, as well as a positive message for kids about environmental conservation and preventing climate change.
So far, we've touched on 2 kinds of IMAX movies - the Hollywood hits and the kids movies. There are also those ones they show on IMAX but never make it to regular movie theaters, usually nature-inspired documentaries that give the viewer the exhilerating experience of being in crazy remote nature places like Antarctica or the bottom of the ocean. This is actually a quite interesting socio-cultural phenomenon. Because nature has been removed from our every day lives, we need a way to reinsert ourselves into the natural landscape in order to feel fully human again.
I am happy to say that IMAX is most definitely filling that void for us and our youth today. Let's be honest, we're not gonna take our kids camping often enough to get them to really love and understand the environment the way that the Native Americans did. And if we're gonna get ourselves outta this whole Global Warming thingamajig, we're gonna need the next generation to know how to use all parts of the buffalo, so to speak. Your biannual Indiana Dunes field trip isn't gonna cut it anymore if your kids are actually going to want to save the planet, so you need some enhanced, mind-blowing, extreme nature. You need nature on Mountain Dew. You need IMAX. And between Under the Sea and Jean-Michel Cousteau's Dolphins and Whales 3D, the upcoming Chicago IMAX schedule has you covered. Which reminds me that at least there is one of the old movie theater gimmicks that, after nearly being forgetten, has experienced a resurgence thanks to how much better it is on IMAX: 3D-movies. And if IMAX can save 3D film, it seems just as likely that it can save the world from overheating.
So anyways, would you please just get your Groupon already?
The Fine Print
Promotional value expires Dec 4, 2008. Amount paid never expires. Merchant is solely responsible to purchasers for the care and quality of the advertised goods and services.