Unhappy Cheat

I had been looking forward to the "Happy Feet" movie for an entire year, ever since I saw the cute penguin dance solo in an IMAX 3-D coming attractions preview.

I liked the full-length film on the whole, yet I came away from the large screen experience disappointed and cheated.

First, IMAX abandoned its promised plan to release "Happy Feet" in 3-D this fall.

Second, when we attended the Regal Mall of Georgia IMAX Theatre, the immaculate IMAX presentation implied was nowhere to be seen. The gigantic picture was too dim (snow is white, not beige) and the entire film was shown wildly out of focus, from top to bottom and start to finish. My wife noted the inept projection, too.

We were downhearted and displeased with the theatre's unacceptable quality control and the once-glorious IMAX brand, which we have now dubbed "IMIN."

Our third strike involved Savion Glover. He was the stunt dancer doubling Mumble, the lead penguin. Since "Happy Feet" is animated, a process called "motion capture" was employed, using multiple sensors attached to the body of the performer, which tracked and recorded his physical actions and attributes for computers to transfer into the detailed cartoons.

I've had the pleasure of seeing Mr. Glover on the stage, so I recognized the penguin's distinctive body language immediately. In person, Savion tap-dances into a frenzy beyond the point where heavy perspiration can be seen flinging everywhere around him.

Not once during "Happy Feet" did the penguin fling an icicle. Not once! That would've been way cool.

Then, again, maybe he did.

The theatre could have bungled that, too, causing the icicles to evaporate.

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