This month, two favorite movies made their return to the big screen. These throwbacks include Disney/Pixar’s Finding Nemo re-released Sept. 14, and Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark in a one-week release from Sept. 7-13. The films came back with enhanced formats; Nemo returned in Digital 3D, and Raiders in IMAX with enhanced audio. But the trade off for new features is higher prices at the box office. At AMC, an IMAX Ticket can cost up to $15, and a 3D ticket can cost up to $13.50; regular tickets cost $9.50.3D and IMAX are among the popular new developments in filmmaking, owed in part to the success of James Cameron’s Avatar. Avatar, released in 2009 with both 3D and IMAX formats, earned more than $2.7 billion, the highest grossing film of all time.

But having the newest technology doesn’t automatically make a better movie. Film analysis teacher Rikki Santer said cinema benefits only from meaningful application of new technology.

“I want 3D to be used wisely,” Santer said. “When it’s just pyrotechnics, just there for show, I find it very distracting. I want the whole experience—plot, character development, and technology—to be one element that makes a narrative film powerful.”

Despite such reservations, students have reacted positively to the re-releases. Junior Madeline Underwood said the use of 3D helps draw the audience into the film’s story.

“For younger children, and even adults of older ages, it allows them to immerse themselves in the movie,” Underwood said. “To be a part of it, to be able to feel like they can touch things, makes it more personal.”

But junior Emma Piotroski is less enthusiastic.

“I don’t like seeing 3D movies,” Piotroski said. “It distracts me from the actual movie that I’m watching, and so I always feel it’s a nuisance.”

Another issue for movie-goers is the large expense of going to the theater to see a 3D or IMAX movie- especially for retro cinema. Piotroski, a fan of Indiana Jones, said the price isn’t right.

“IMAX tickets are really expensive,” she said. “I feel like the extra ticket money is just not worth it.”

On the other hand, senior Riley Bivens said 3D is effective in drawing crowds to the movies.

“I have a 3D TV myself, and it’s different, you see more into the scene than the scene popping out [as in 3D movies],” he said. “[3D] is kind of a gimmick, but it’s a smart gimmick.”

Bivens said that movies re-released in 3D could represent a major step forward in the art as a whole, but it is yet unclear whether the 3D trend will last.

“Like with any new technology, there’s the potential there, but it’s really how we’re going to apply it in the next decade or two.” Bivens said. “[Like Blu-Ray or DVD], in the big scheme of it all, it’s just a better disk.”

Finding Nemo; A Fish’s tale

At the time of its release in 2003, Finding Nemo was one of several of Pixar’s hit movies. But even among these films and those Pixar has made since, Nemo stands out as a favorite to students like junior Beniva Ganther. The film tells the story of Marlin, a clownfish and the overprotective father of Nemo. After Nemo is captured by a diver, Marlin and his scatterbrained ally Dory set out to rescue him, battling ocean creatures on the way.

For many students, the film was a major part of their childhood, yet reactions to the re-release have been mixed. Underwood believes Nemo 3D will have the most appeal with children.

“I think it’s a little strange to put it in 3D after all this time, but it will be fun for kids.”

Ganther recalls the film fondly, but shows disinterest in the re-release on account of its higher ticket costs.

“On one hand, I really want to go see it, because it was a big part of my childhood,” Ganther said. “On the other hand, I’m not wanting to drop $13 for a ticket.”

Indiana Jones; A Lucas Legend

Raiders of the Lost Ark was the brainchild of two of Hollywood’s great directors- Steven Spielberg and George Lucas. Raiders introduced the world to archeology professor Henry “Indiana” Jones, Jr., played by Harrison Ford, who moonlights as a treasure hunter. After losing a gold idol in South America, Indy embarks on a quest to protect the Ark of the Covenant from his rival René Belloq and the Nazis.

Though the movie was released in 1981, many UAHS students were exposed to Raiders early in their lives and look back fondly at the perilous exploits of Indy. Senior Riley Bivens said the film was a fond memory from his childhood, and the re-release will introduce a new generation to the film he loved as a child.

“It really captured the spirit of adventure that every kid—that everyone—has,” he said. “I think [the re-release is] going to open a lot of kids up to [the franchise], that didn’t get the experience I got.”