While most movies in today’s digital age are shot and viewed digitally, Christopher Nolan’s latest film, “Oppenheimer,” takes a different approach, being shot entirely on 70-millimeter film.
The Loft Cinema, one of about 20 theaters across the country and the sole one in Tucson, showing the movie in its original format.
“To be honest with you, Im most excited about the 70-millimeter portion of it,” said Pearl Rey, who attended an early showing of Nolan’s latest film Friday.
Another moviegoer highly recommended experiencing the film in its 70-millimeter glory.
Jeff Yanc, the Program Director for The Loft Cinema, explained that 70-millimeter is one of the oldest cinema formats, with the movie consisting of nine reels of film that measure more than three-and-a-half miles in total length.
“All told, the print weighs about 200 pounds. So, its a very different look and a very different feeling when youre watching it,” Yanc said. “Of course, film is the way movies were shown for a hundred years before the digital revolution happened.”
Presenting a movie shot on film offers a unique viewing experience. However, behind the scenes, it also requires more work to bring to the big screen.
Yanc elaborated that the film necessitates two projectors, with the movie starting on one before being manually switched over and back again until all nine reels have been used.
“And then you have to rewind the reels for the next time you show the film, and its just a constant process all day,” he said.
With the movie officially hitting theaters Friday, the excitement was abundant as movie buffs eagerly made their way into the theater for this one-of-a-kind showing.
“Its like the difference between listening to an album on LP and an album on CD or over-streaming,” Rey said.
Ryan Buhler, another movie buff, reminisced, “I grew up watching films on actual film, a celluloid. It takes you back to when you were a kid and watching films.”