While I’ve always heard about the great 4DX process, last week was my first time getting to see a movie in a moving seat, complete with lighting changes and various “weather” conditions.
Seeing Shazam! was unquestionably the most interactive experience I’ve ever had while watching a film. It was like being on a little rollercoaster while you’re simultaneously relaxed to a great film; and, yes, being the resident Captain Marvel expert at GHG, I couldn’t ask for a better film to kick off that 4DX “bus” ride..
For those unaware, the customer seats move with the action on film — whether there’s driving or flying through the air. Little vents and sensors on the chairs allow you to feel gusts of wind or certain smells as the scene depicts it on screen. Even during moments of transformation in which young Billy Batson turns into the adult Shazam, there’s a lot of smoke and lightning and thunder involved and you see that and feel that in the theater.
I thoroughly enjoyed the 4DX experience and am beyond thrilled to do it again for the upcoming Avengers: Endgame.
The Shazam! 4DX Experience = 5/5 Bibles.
ScreenX is an interesting concept that I’ve previously had a mixed experience with. When I reviewed Ant-Man and the Wasp, I noted that the movie didn’t fully take advantage of the opportunities this format presented and left feeling underwhelmed, despite having had an overall positive experience. For that reason, I went into Shazam! wondering if they could succeed where AM&TW didn’t.
I’m happy to say that it absolutely did. This time there wasn’t a single moment where the 270 degree screen felt like a distraction. The only times I noticed the change, it fully enhanced the experience. As good as it was for the most part, the scene where Billy and Freddy are testing out the powers of Shazam is shockingly great because of the creative way the side screens were used.
While I’ve generally had a good experience with ScreenX, that scene — where you feel like you’re locked inside the pages of comic book! — proved that, with the right creativity, ScreenX could be a format with serious longevity. I hope more blockbusters take advantage of the panoramic shots.
The wide screens often took full advantage of the movie’s creepy, sprawling and sometimes explosive nature; as you have no choice but to turn your head left and right to immense and intimidating creatures filling the dark caves, or the overarching buildings setting up some great flying Philly fists . I’m just imaging Godzilla: King of the Monsters in this format already! While I recommended AM&TW in ScreenX with some reservations, Shazam! I do so unequivocally.
The Shazam! ScreenX Experience = 4.5/5 Bibles.