Ang Lee’s long anticipated Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk debuted at the New York Film Festival on Friday night, with mixed reviews.
This screening was closely watched because it was made with the fastest frame rate ever for a wide release. It is in 3D, 4K and shot at 120 frames per second. The traditional rate I’d 24 frames per second. Some directors think it is the future of filmmaking while others aren’t so sure.
The effect of the format is a realness that can make it look like video. It makes the backgrounds look fake because they are so visible. Many didn’t know what to say after the screening. Ang Lee concludes that it is going to take time for people to get used to how it looks. Our eyes are trained to see the regular 24fps. Unfortunately most us will not get to see the 3D, 4K, 120fps version. Only 2 theaters in the country are equipped to show it, one in New York and one in Los Angeles. Some theaters will be able to show a 48fps version, but most will see the standard 24fps.
The reviews for the movie itself were mixed and leaning to more negative.
Billy Lynn was part of a handful of Oscar contenders that had yet to be seen. It reiterates the theory that a movie cannot be named a part of the Oscar race UNTIL it has been seen. Still waiting for Fences, Silence, Live by Night and Hidden Figures.