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Backyard Theater - Outdoor Movies

Backyard Theater - Outdoor Movies  




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Author Topic: Lego Batman  (Read 1192 times)
Buzz
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« on: August 05, 2017, 08:38:48 am »

Showed Lego Batman to our Cub Scouts last night.  We had to start a little earlier than I would have liked.  This movie starts out a bit dark and I would have liked less ambient light at the beginning.  But it all went very well.

As usual, I had music going for an hour beforehand, with visualizations running.  I had a (cheesy) logo video and a scout pack version of the 20th Century Fox intro.  To keep things simple, I ripped the movie to my laptop and had it all in one playlist.  Ran it in stereo, didn't bother with center channel.

The weather was unbelievable.  Low 70's at the start and in jackets or blankets by the end, which is amazing for August here.

It was a great night!



* scout_movie_night_2.jpg (1834.07 KB, 2912x1638 - viewed 45 times.)
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SR
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« Reply #1 on: August 07, 2017, 11:19:33 pm »

Showed Lego Batman to our Cub Scouts last night.  We had to start a little earlier than I would have liked.  This movie starts out a bit dark and I would have liked less ambient light at the beginning.  But it all went very well.

As usual, I had music going for an hour beforehand, with visualizations running.  I had a (cheesy) logo video and a scout pack version of the 20th Century Fox intro.  To keep things simple, I ripped the movie to my laptop and had it all in one playlist.  Ran it in stereo, didn't bother with center channel.

The weather was unbelievable.  Low 70's at the start and in jackets or blankets by the end, which is amazing for August here.

It was a great night!


Buzz, it's good to hear from you!  You know as far as the starting early thing is concerned if folks can't make all the details out then a little something is left for their imagination.  In my opinion and other folks will say differently I think surround sound outside is not worth while.  In a small yard or on someones porch it might work but in a setting like yours where it's a bigger area I doubt that anyone would have even realized there was a center speaker had you run one. 

I don't know how well you have followed things on the forms here but I have transmitted my sound expecting attendees to bring a radio.  In the end at the Sit & Vue we were transmitting in FM stereo, but before that is was AM stereo, and at my current outdoor theatre it's AM mono!  No one complains about it either.  It's clear and you can understand the dialog your good to go outside in my opinion. 

I think that's one thing that I actually like about BYT, compromises usually end up having to be made, it's part of what gives it personality I think.  It looks like an awesome showing and I bet the kids and adults enjoyed the heck out of it!
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SIT & VUE "3" OUTDOOR THEATRES

PLEASE VISIT US ON THE WEB!
WWW.SITANDVUEOUTDOORTHEATRE.WEEBLY.COM

WWW.NIGHT-SKYOUTDOORTHEATRE.WEEBLY.COM
darknite
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« Reply #2 on: August 08, 2017, 03:16:22 pm »

Hey Buzz, that looks like a lot of fun! Nice setup.
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Buzz
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« Reply #3 on: August 08, 2017, 03:49:28 pm »

Thanks guys.  It was great fun.  Everybody seemed to enjoy themselves and I didn't hear of any complaints or criticism.  Most of the time at home I run 3 channel so I can crank up the center channel for dialogue.  But stereo is less hassle, and I might be doing it more often.  I'm sure all of us who run such things are our own worst critic.  The guests always seem to have a good time.  I don't get to do very many of these each year, but would like to have time to get it done more often.  A few years ago I tried getting 5 channel surround going in the backyard.  NOT worth the effort for me!

I was prepared to answer any questions about all the home equipment and PVC frame with a whole "A scout is thrifty" bit.  I did explain to a couple of people how the frame was built, and about my BOC screen from Carl, probably in more detail than they wanted Wink 

I've been interested in transmitting sound rather than setting up speakers, but haven't tried it.  This was the first venue I've done in a bigger open area, but the shape of the area lent itself well to my lack of amplification and less than optimal speaker setup.  **More Power!**

I certainly spent too much time putting together a playlist of music that didn't have any cuss words, inappropriate topics, etc.  And then there's the time spent figuring out how to put together a short video intro.  The 15 second intro took hours to complete!  But for me all of that is part of the fun.  Kind of like comparing how songs sound through different speakers and things.  Some people don't see the allure, but to me and I'm sure most of you, it's fun.
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SR
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« Reply #4 on: August 08, 2017, 11:59:56 pm »

Buzz, At both of the BYT I have been heavily involved in have transmitter their sound and asked attendees to bring a portable radio.  If you ever do a showing somewhere that you need to contain your sound requiring the use of headphones could be an option.  Another option is to broadcast to radios you provide and place in strategic locations.  Just a few of my thoughts there.

As far as playlists are concerned back when I had my own BYT theatre I use to do a fair bit of that, but I also had some stuff that I would pre-make in the winter to use during the summer.  I'd also sometimes show movies from DVDs in which case I would do the preshow on the laptop and switch from the laptop to the dvd player for the movie.  I did that because I felt the DVD player was more reliable than the laptop.   

Where I'm at now helping out at the Night-Sky his "media player" is duel deck VHS machine.  It's really quite an experience in timing, and in some ways it's a lot of fun, but you have to pay attention too.  So lets suppose we are going to play an intro tape, followed by two cartoon shorts and then the movie.  So I'd start the intro tape in slot #1, when that is over start the first cartoon in slot #2, followed by rewinding the intro.  When the first cartoon is over in slot #2 the second cartoon can start right away in slot #1.  Repeat until it's time to start the movie.  So basically just jockeying tapes back and forth between the two player slots.  It's a lot more work during the show but it is fun for me at least, unless a tape gets jammed, and yes I have gotten very good at unjamming VHS tapes and players in the dark Smiley  I brought all that up just because it is different way of doing things today.
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SIT & VUE "3" OUTDOOR THEATRES

PLEASE VISIT US ON THE WEB!
WWW.SITANDVUEOUTDOORTHEATRE.WEEBLY.COM

WWW.NIGHT-SKYOUTDOORTHEATRE.WEEBLY.COM
Buzz
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« Reply #5 on: August 09, 2017, 10:43:57 am »

Tape jockeying - that takes me back!  Many moons ago I worked at a radio station on an as needed basis.  The music was on reels, but commercials and spots were on cassettes (like 8 tracks).  We had to do the same thing - prep player 2 while 1 was going, swap 1 when 2 was going, and so on.  If you're not paying attention you end up with dead air, which doesn't make the bosses happy!  This was the early to mid 90's so the equipment was a bit dated.  I'm glad I got a chance to experience those machines. 

I'll bet you're the type who can feel a bit uneasy or restless just sitting back while things go on.  That's how I am anyway.  It's nice to have a responsibility to fiddle with while the audience enjoys.  Though, I don't envy you having to unjam tapes and players!

It's really cool how taking the movies outside changes the game a bit.  Sometimes I watch a VHS at home on my TV.  The video quality just sucks after everything being HD nowadays.  But you take a VHS outside, and it doesn't really matter.  There's just so much more to the experience outdoors.
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darknite
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« Reply #6 on: August 09, 2017, 07:16:10 pm »


I certainly spent too much time putting together a playlist of music that didn't have any cuss words, inappropriate topics, etc.  And then there's the time spent figuring out how to put together a short video intro.  The 15 second intro took hours to complete!  But for me all of that is part of the fun.  Kind of like comparing how songs sound through different speakers and things.  Some people don't see the allure, but to me and I'm sure most of you, it's fun.

Now ya gone and dun it!  You mentioned an intro video...  Could you post it, or a link to it? How did you create it? What software?  :-)  Thanks.
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SR
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« Reply #7 on: August 22, 2017, 09:26:20 pm »

Tape jockeying - that takes me back!  Many moons ago I worked at a radio station on an as needed basis.  The music was on reels, but commercials and spots were on cassettes (like 8 tracks).  We had to do the same thing - prep player 2 while 1 was going, swap 1 when 2 was going, and so on.  If you're not paying attention you end up with dead air, which doesn't make the bosses happy!  This was the early to mid 90's so the equipment was a bit dated.  I'm glad I got a chance to experience those machines. 

I'll bet you're the type who can feel a bit uneasy or restless just sitting back while things go on.  That's how I am anyway.  It's nice to have a responsibility to fiddle with while the audience enjoys.  Though, I don't envy you having to unjam tapes and players!

It's really cool how taking the movies outside changes the game a bit.  Sometimes I watch a VHS at home on my TV.  The video quality just sucks after everything being HD nowadays.  But you take a VHS outside, and it doesn't really matter.  There's just so much more to the experience outdoors.

Well you nailed me down pretty well lol.  I've never been any good at just sitting there.  When I had the Sit & Vue the most I had to do was sometimes switch between laptop and DVD player, otherwise it was just the laptop.  It was to only way I had ever run movies before.  Oh sure I used VHS in my living room at one time a lot, but it's not the same, it's not a presentation.  At the Sit & Vue I just found other stuff to do.  It was rare for me to actually watch an entire movie.  Now at the Night-Sky I never do.  It is fun for me to run the VHS equipment.  I also wear a set of headphones during tape changes so I can quickly adjust the audio levels if needed.  As far as the unjamming of tapes is concerned it's just worn out equipment.  So far I have managed as best I can.  When Gary decides it has been enough or his place gets developed I'm going to miss the Night-Sky and in some ways I will miss it more than the Sit & Vue.  It's got a lot of flaws, but to me it also has personality.

Your right about differences between VHS and HD.  A little off topic but I have used an older than dirt flip phone for more years than I can remember.  Recently it quite working and I purchased a really nice samsung smart phone.  Besides the fact that I can now text, check my e-mail ect from the phone, the sound quality is really something else.  My wife has had an HD phone for a little while now and I'll tell you the first time I called her from my new phone it really did sound like she was right there.  Truly amazing.  But back to outdoor theaters, my experiance tells me that it is more about the experience the guest have during an outdoor movie rather than best picture, best sound ect. 

Not to hijack your thread but this reminds me, the overnight camping night at the Night-Sky was August 16th.  We had 8 tents in his yard and we played movies from sunset to sunrise.  One of the traditions is showing an interview with the last manager of the Valley Drive in, he managed it in for one year in 1979 and then from 1992 until it closed in 2012, the interview was shot I think in 2007 or 2008.  Sadly he has passed away since the theaters closing, but at his theater they would do Rocky Horror as the third feature one night only every August.  So that's what I started doing at the Sit & Vue and now at the Night-Sky.  His interview followed by Rocky Horror as the third show.  And lets not forget about the pancake breakfast at 11AM after the long night!  I'm hoping that we'll get to go a little bit into September with the movies this year, but I'm not sure, it's really up to Gary and his health isn't so good and even though I do most of the work on the movie nights I think he is ready for a break, so we'll see what he decides.  Another interesting tid bit.  The Valley drive in was the last operating drive in owned by United Theatres.  Gary, the gentile man that owns the Night-Sky retired from that same company.  This year I got Gary to speak live to the audience about his time with United Theaters, and what the Valley Drive in was like in the 60's and 70's before it was plexed and after.  Was really fun to get to hear him talk about that.     
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SIT & VUE "3" OUTDOOR THEATRES

PLEASE VISIT US ON THE WEB!
WWW.SITANDVUEOUTDOORTHEATRE.WEEBLY.COM

WWW.NIGHT-SKYOUTDOORTHEATRE.WEEBLY.COM
genesis76
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« Reply #8 on: August 31, 2017, 05:10:11 pm »

I hate to ask this SR but did you video Gary with your new phone?
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