Titanic Re-Release

It’s been 20 years since James Cameron‘s Titanic broke office records, melted hearts, and swept the Academy Awards. To celebrate this milestone, the film is returning to theaters for a limited run next month. And since this is a James Cameron re-release, you know what that means: some fancy technology will be involved to help sell this as a proper event. In this case, that means the film is being presented in “Dolby Vision” and will be screened in both 2D and 3D formats.

Titanic will return to theaters on December 1, 2017 for an exclusive one-week engagement in all all Dolby Cinema at AMC locations. In fact, the official press release reads like an advertisement for Dolby Cinema and the Dolby Vision as much as reads like an announcement that one of the most popular movies of all time is returning to theaters. That’s the point, of course. Dolby is pushing their tech by tying it to a movie just about everyone likes (or rather, just about everyone has an opinion about).

Here’s what you need to know about Dolby Vision, taken straight from the press release:

A premium cinema offering for moviegoers, Dolby Cinema begins with the filmmakers’ vision—using the full storytelling capabilities that Dolby offers in image and sound production to transform the way movies are made and presented. With state-of-the-art image, sound, and acoustic capabilities, the movie comes alive to deliver cinema in its purest form. The Dolby Vision projection system, which uses state-of-the-art optics and image processing, delivers high dynamic range with enhanced color technology and a contrast ratio that far exceeds that of any other image technology on the market today. Dolby Cinema also includes the award-winning Dolby sound technology Dolby Atmos, which moves audio around the cinema, even overhead, placing the audience deeper inside the film’s setting.

Naturally, this is right up the alley of director James Cameron, who has never encountered a piece of cinema-related technology that hasn’t made him want to tinker for a decade so he can use it to make another movie. Here’s his statement on the re-release (the caps are all his):

We mastered a few minutes of Titanic in Dolby Vision and I was stunned. It was like seeing it for the first time. Now that the entire film has been mastered, I’m excited to share it with audiences across the U.S. This is beyond 3D, beyond 70mm, it’s beyond anything you’ve seen before. The image leaps off the screen as bright and vibrant as life itself. This is the way all movies should be seen and without a doubt, Titanic has NEVER looked better.

This does sound admittedly hyperbolic, but color me intrigued. When Titanic was re-released in theaters back in 2012, I was very impressed with how it looked 15 years after the fact. The 3D conversion was surprisingly solid and the digital effects held up (it helps that the filmmaking surrounding those effects still feels impossibly bold, of course). Five years ago, I was expecting to have a pretty good time by revisiting Titanic and instead found myself bowled over by it once more. Freed from the cultural conversations that have picked it apart for two decades now and taken on its own terms, it’s still a remarkable piece of big-budget filmmaking: romantic, tragic, and sometimes just silly enough in ways that feel unintentional but reflect a heart being worn on its sleeve.

Tickets are on sale now and each purchase comes with a free digital download of the film (while supplies last, which seems like a silly thing to say about a digital download, but whatever).

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