Shandaken going 3D

By Jay Braman Jr
With 3D film all the rage in Hollywood these days, its no wonder that the way-cool technology has found its way into theaters all over the world, but leave it to the Shandaken Theatrical Society (STS) to take it one step further with something not seen anywhere else, at least for a long-long time.
This Saturday, July 28 at 7 p.m., STS will present what film buffs say is the most famous 3D movie ever made.

Back in 1954, audiences were both awestruck and petrified by the monster horror film “The Creature From the Black Lagoon.”

One of the classic movies released during the first wave of 3D’s success in the 1950s, this saw a creature expressly designed for the format, all sharp angles and jutting features that the 3D would enhance. The dialogue and the acting may not rival that in “The King’s Speech,” but the creature itself is a work of genius, and the underwater scenes are hugely impressive given the time it was made.

Almost 60 years later, the campy film is known for the fun of the experience more than the film itself. Every time the creature’s webbed, clawed hands reach out of the screen, and it happens a lot, it gets a scare and a cheer.

Mark Lerner, the guy behind the film series at STS, explains the plot for those that don’t know. “A strange prehistoric beast lurks in the depths of the Amazonian jungle,” he said. “A group of scientists try to capture the animal and bring it back to civilization. This 1954 classic stars a guy in a rubber suit and the lovely swim suited Julie Adams.”
Lerner adds that those cool paper 1950s 3D specs will be available at the theater.

“I have a whole box of them,” he said.
Lerner adds that this is not a DVD but a real 16-millimeter print that comes “complete with reel changes and the threat of breaking film.”
“It will be a blast,” he said, “and we’ll have popcorn and candy for sale crazy cheap as usual.”
Tickets are $5.

STS Playhouse is located just off Main Street in Phoenicia. For more information go to www.stsplayhouse.com or call 688-2279.