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Preview Fri Jan 11 2013
It's not often moviegoers get a chance to see a film in 70mm format, and even less often they get a chance to see, in the span of two weeks, nine films in 70mm. Besides those projected on digital projection, almost all films are shot and shown in 35mm due to the cost and practicality of the equipment required on both ends, but 70mm offers a tremendous increase in visual information and presentation quality, and many that were created in the format are done a disservice when screened in 35mm.
The Music Box Theatre just announced the full line-up of their 70mm Festival. Pulling from the relatively short list of films available in the format, they've done a wonderful job picking out some of the most worthy- big screen classics, such as 2001: A Space Odyssey (with a new print), Vertigo (not originally filmed in 70mm, but restored to it in the mid '90s) and West Side Story, the complex French visual comedy Playtime, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Lifeforce, Lord Jim and the two most recent fictions to use the format, Kenneth Branagh's Hamlet and last year's The Master. No Lawrence of Arabia, but that's likely because of the just-completed 35mm run for its 50th anniversary.
Arranged across Feb. 15 to 28, there are at least two screenings of each film, which you can see for $9.25 each, or spend $70 on a limited-availabity festival pass good for unlimited admissions -- which, considering the length of the features (most clock in around two and half, Hamlet at four), might be a better deal than rent.