Bigscreen has released the latest lineup of big-name movies premiering this month in its recently released ‘VR Cinema’ feature.
A virtual reality movie theater always has felt like an obvious shoe-in for VR, a sentiment illustrated by some of our earliest articles covering VR cinema pioneers and the apps they chose to build. Since then of course, VR headset owners have been given numerous ways to enjoy films alone or with others, but for the most part those movies were self-provided, with the VR headset merely acting as an immersive viewing vessel for you (and your friends).
Bigscreen announced in December that they were looking to help evolve the movie VR experience by licensing studio films and giving Bigscreen users the opportunity to buy and watch them together in virtual theatres (either in private or in public virtual form). Ticket prices range between $4–$5 and can be purchased from Bigscreen‘s website directly.
The company has announced which movies will be available this month:
January 10th to 16th
- Star Trek Beyond (2016)
- Star Trek Into Darkness (2013)
- Transformers: Dark of the Moon (2011)
January 17th to 24th
- Transformers: The Last Knight (2017)
- Ghost in the Shell (2017)
- Terminator Genisys (2015)
- Top Gun (1986)
Think of the service like renting a movie from Amazon, but you watch virtually in a public theater in the style of the movie.
One of the biggest technical and experiential benefits of viewing 3D movies in VR though is the ‘perfect’ stereoscopy as each eye has a discrete view of its intended frame with no ‘cross-talk’ or dimming as is common with most passive 3D experiences in traditional cinemas. Granted, we’ve not yet tested the 3D quality available via the streaming service, so just how good the image is remains to be seen.
Up until now, Bigscreen software itself—which lets you join rooms with friends and share your own media or watch free media channels in public rooms with others—has been entirely free. The paid films are offered in partnership with Paramount; Bigscreen is putting special emphasis on its 3D films, as streaming services such as Netflix and Amazon’s Prime Video typically only serve up 2D versions, even to those who have 3DTVs.
Bigscreen says its working on additional ‘VR Cinema’ content, including private movie rentals to watch with friends, more movies, a drive-in movie theater environment, and themed movie events like ‘horror week’.