For those not familiar with it, D-BOX is a technology whereby the action on screen in a particular film has been translated to a series of motions that are sent to a specific seat. The seat moves and rumbles matching whatever happens to be going on in a particular scene. D-BOX started as a high-end home theater component, offering motion seating to those who could afford it. Fox jumped on pretty early, including D-BOX motion codes on their DVD's. A separate receiver would interpret the codes and send them to the receivers on the seating, telling the chair how and where to move. More recently, D-BOX has been rolling out special seating in select movie theaters here in the States and a few in Canada.

Austin's own Galaxy Highland was one of the first to dive in to D-BOX. Two full rows of seats were installed in one theater just in time for last summer's Terminator: Salvation. Since then, films like The Final Destination, Sherlock Holmes and Clash of the Titans have all enjoyed D-BOX runs. I'll be the first to admit that I was pretty skeptical going in. Would it make movies seem like a ride at Disneyland? It sounds like a cheap gimmick, and one that could easily be more distracting than enjoyable. While some people will still think that on the way out, I actually think it's pretty cool.

The best thing about D-BOX is the time and care spent to really match things up well. The chair doesn't just rumble and move haphazardly. It truly is synced up with the picture, enhancing the movie-going experience. The chairs are also equipped with levels, allowing the viewer to adjust the intensity of the motion. It's not that D-BOX necessarily draws you into the film more, but it just adds a little something special and doesn't take anything away. It certainly is more expensive. Matinee prices for this weekend's A Nightmare on Elm Street are $15 apiece with evening shows running a cool $17.25 here in Austin. While Nightmare seems an odd choice to receive the D-BOX treatment, it's nice to have the option of seeing new films this way.
CATEGORIES Movies, Horror