Movie Gimmicks

Most cynical internet denizens will tell you that the resurgence of 3D is a mere gimmick, meant to drag more people to theaters and jack up ticket prices. (I am one of those cynical people.) Average movie-goers seem to be agreeing, with a resounding “I paid five bucks extra for this crap? I could have had nachos!” 3D has come and gone throughout film history, and each time we come to the same general conclusion: We kinda don’t like it. Until we have some kind of full immersion films (and would they even be films at that point?) we’ll probably never be satisfied. When 3D movies fell apart the first time, Hollywood just went back to doing what they had been doing before the 3D boom: Trying to make good movies. One man was not satisfied, though. William Castle, director and producer of ridiculous B-movies, had a vision. He wanted to make every single one of his films into a spectacle event (much to the annoyance of theaters that booked his movies) that drew the masses to the cinema for the experience. Here are six of his most notorious gimmicks.

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The first question you must be asking yourself, if you aren’t in the know, is what the heck D-Box is. Turns out it’s a ridiculous version of a standard theater seat that jerks around and vibrates while you’re watching a movie. Anyone with spinal issues or hemorrhoids might want to avoid this new breakthrough technology, but for the rest of us it sounds like an exciting new development in movie watching. Right? Okay, maybe not. But it’s an idea that could be poised to grow. It doesn’t take a gypsy fortune teller to predict that J.J. Abrams’s upcoming Amblin Entertainment love letter Super 8 is going to be a huge, gigantic success at the box office this summer. Even from the first trailer alone I can tell that people are going to be seeing this movie multiple times, talking about it all summer, and maybe even drinking out of Burger King cups with its logo on them. The good news for D-Box is that Super 8 is going to be using their shaky chair technology on 50 select screens. If you’re lucky enough to live somewhere near the 50 D-Box enabled theaters that can be found on a map here, then you might be the perfect guinea pig to try this growing craze out.

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