Pan of the lobby by Murshid
Finally went to the 3D Cinema at Majestic City. It’s nice. The first movie (Three Musketeers) is about as interesting as a store demo reel, but it’s nice that we finally have 3D. I don’t get why every movie is in 3D though, it’s not that great. Avatar is like the iPhone. Everyone copied one feature without realizing that the success was in a coherent whole. There’s a value to good design in itself, however many dimensions its in.
But I digress. The theatre. Sri Lankan theaters are run by the EAP group (Savoy, Liberty) and apparently Majestic is someone else. Downtown theaters have turned into soft-porn dens, though one theatre I reviewed emailed me to say their running family movies now. Liberty recently opened Liberty Lite, a smaller theatre with globally current, better movies (Cowboys and Aliens, Super 8). Now Majestic has opened a new floor, with bigger theatres, showing bigger fare, including 3D. Here is a cursory review.
Majestic has parking, it has an ATM, and it is a functioning mall. There’s only one elevator up, but besides that the basic infrastructure is there. The theatre lobby is really nice, all white and expansive. The bathrooms seem decent. No line, but perhaps that was a Monday Night thing. I always book tickets online anyways.
The ongoing plus of Sri Lankan theaters is that you can get beer. I don’t mean in no paper cup, I mean… a can of beer. Sitting through films like Transformers is intolerable without something to cut it, preferably PCP, but a Lion is better than nothing. You have to sneak it in cause there’s this weird rule that you can’t drink in the screening room itself, but I’ve never had a problem. The new Majestic doesn’t have beer. AFAIK. Sad.
The drinks section is actually physically walled off from the food, which I found odd. You can’t order both at once. They had juice and coke and Red Bull. I had a juice, which was like 50 bucks for two. Kist needs to screw the caps on a bit less tight, really difficult.
The food situation was sadly pathetic. You had three options. Bites of sausage, sausage on a stick, sausage on a bun (chicken sausage). Also fries. I think there was a KFC snacker option in there, but not prominent. The hot dog for some inexplicable reason was not halal (I know because a Bora couple asked). I have gotten so used to public meat being halal that I found this baffling, I mean, where do you even get non-halal meat in Colombo? We have so many Muslim consumers that this is just silly. Non-Muslims are fine with halal meat and Muslims demand it. It’s kinda a no brainer. The Bora gentleman asked for the manager’s number, which I seconded. I hope he calls.
The theatre is pretty big, and tall. Seats 178 according to the box plan. The seats are comfortable enough, if you push they lean back, plenty of leg room. The theatre is airy and doesn’t smell like piss (Savoy 2, I’m looking at you), generally nice. The screen is big and the sound is decent. I’m not a connessuire, hell I can’t even spell connoisseur, but theatres here are often faded, or crackly, and not in a charming Instagram sorta way. This is modern.
The 3D glasses themselves are sunglass style, not bulky. Personally, I’m not crazy for 3D. I find that it makes movies dark. In the Three Musketeers it seemed largely an excuse for a lot of conversations in improbably long hallways. It was cool during the animated sequences, seems like there’s a lot you could do there. For most of the scenes, however, the effect doesn’t go beyond the capability of a good macro lens and that depth of field out of focus thing. Honestly, I think most 3D is bullshit. It’s just a tool, and not one always worth using.
This isn’t even worth commenting on. This movie is terrible, and not even interestingly so. It is just a consumer product, like a bar of soap. Everything is there – the actors, the sets, the costumes – but nothing means anything and at no point do you care. The characters never develop, there is never any real conflict or challenge, and it’s just boring. The production is seamless and at no point do you see the wires, but you feel them. There is no emotional value to this film.
It’s a shame, because the villains were good – Christopher Waltz (of Inglorious Basterds), Mads Mikkelsen (of Casino Royale) and Orland Bloom (fucking Legolas) – and utterly wasted. It was like watching those trailers they have between levels of a video game, you know the ones you skip? It was like that, for an hour and a half, with no game at the end.
So yeah, but it’s nice to have another theatre, and a 3D one at that. Colombo’s coming up bitches, we’re getting all the modern media, and all the modern mediocrities.