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Richard

Movie World - a ripoff park?

22 posts in this topic

This topic was split from the "Which ticket system is better??" thread in General Thrills. Discuss opinions on the ride and show selection etc. at Movie World and the value for money the park has.

joz said:
About the studio tour: It was closed because guests were leaving the trams and walking onto 'hot' sets and wasting crews time. Apparently people just didn't understand it was a real studio.

As for that excuse, that's all it is - an excuse, not a reason. I fully understand security issues that might be related, but on that same token Universal Studios in Hollywood have their studio tour, and have had for decades. Their studios there are the largest in the world and on one of our tours we counted no less than four separate crews working on blockbuster films, award winning TV series and I believe one group doing a commercial.

Meanwhile our little studios (truth hurts, doesn't it ;)) and the filming of B-grade Hollywood flicks is concerned with security. If telling people that this is a tour of a working studio and that at no stage are they to exit the vehicle etc. isn't enough then restrain them. All that Universal has is closing sides on the cars, which does the job perfectly.

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To tell you the truth, i really think Movie World is a smack bang rip-off. When there are shows (i think 1 or 3) they are allright, when there is a ride (WWF, BTR, LW, SDSC) they are above average for an Australian Park in terms of themeing. But there are not enough of them. I mean when people go to "Hollywood on the Goldcoast", they should be able to see the studio tour. I went to movie world in 2002, (when they were constructing SDSC) and i was very disappointed. I expected to be able to go on studio tours like i have heard of about Universal Studios in the US. It looked nothing like i'd expected it to, and Warner Village Theme Parks should be ashamed of themselves. If you haven't already, visit the Total Thrills Gallery of Universal Studios, and you'll see what a movie studio should look like

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A smack bang rip-off!?I'm sure Rabid wouldn't agree with that.There are 3 shows there,and with a couple more rides Warner Bros would be perfect IMO.If you want to count the star parade that's 4 shows,and as far as I'm concerned,that's enough.If a park makes you not want to leave it at closing time,then It's a good park. Anyway,were,getting a bit off track now,so back to the topic.

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No,I probably don't get what your saying,but Movieworld isn't crap without some backlot tour. More to the point,what's a backlot tour?

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There were show elements where people would leave the trams to enter a set (Riddeler's Lair was once displayed in this way), and the train would meet them around the other side. This was one contributor to the problem, and to pull that bit would leave the tram tour was pointless at best (Indeed even when it was open most of the comments were negative). Add to that the fact that the Village studios aren't the busiest studios in the world, and are needing to build up their reputation, these sort of things would be far from ideal. I'm no studio expert, but I can't imagine that the park would take out a popular attraction unless it was to be replaced or the park really had too. To me it either wasn't popular, or the park had to remove it. Think about it, the attractions you point out; Western action, Gremlins (and you can throw Young Einstien's Gravity House, Harry Potter and the old 3D movie in as well) were removed to be replaced. Maverick wasn't pulling its weight in the park, and neither were Superstars - Live in Concert (I still thank god I watched that show that time) hence they got cut. If the studio tour went for reasons other then what the park has said, then it wouldn't have been popular. Don't get me wrong, I'd love too see the studio tour return (and how about using it as a transport ride and dropping people off at Wild West?) but that can't be done unless you get rid of the Selly's-no-more-gaps Looney Tunes Musical revue, which now looks like a pretty solid stadium, and buy the trams back from Aussie Zoo (I swear ther're the same ones :) ). As for the park being a rip-off, well, no I don't think it is. I think the problem is its not as re-visitable as it would like to be. Afterall, on your first visit, you can watch Police Academy, the Special effects show, Marvin the Martian and the parades (and kill a good 2 hours doing this too). As you visit more and more, you stop watching the shows, stop going through the walkthrough/s, and being picky about the rides you ride. The stuff is fine, and all the attractions are good in their own right (though Special effects despratly needs some new special effects).

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Well, technically speaking it's not a backlot tour. A backlot is a typically outdoor area with building facades used for many studio scenes. It's too expensive (more so with TV shows than movies) to send the whole cast and crew out on location, so you have what's called a second unit who do location shots, and just make the backlot or frontlot (which is the sound stage) look like it for the close shots containing the actors. Seinfeld rarely, if ever, filmed from New York. Outdoor scenes were filmed in Universal Studios' "New York Street", which is visible in just about every sitcom and TV drama set in New York. Enough on that though. :) I don't doubt that the studio tour was underperforming, but I think it's their responsibility to tweak it to something that does work. Take Universal Studios' studio tour. It is fantastic - it's funny, informative and very much rerideable. Every time a major film is done up here (which is once every few years), instead of junking the sets, keep a few bits and pieces and set them up in odd corners of their land. Add a few minimal effects (fog, some moving parts etc.), and you're more up to the standard of Universal. And it's not as if it's expensive to do, and it would be a highly marketable point - think the marketing they did for Matrix. Setup the cars as Universal Studios does. Have a live "host" onboard along with a driver. Using video linkups to each car as Universal do, you get a much more personal experience than a standard narration. Every time a barely significant star's in town, get them to record a little segment describing something. Frankie Muniz described the props department to us at Universal Studios. Finally, tie in clips from movies, showing how the sets we're driving through comes together with "movie magic" to create the finished product. Seriously, not an expensive thing to do, and it would seriously be a decent attraction, and can be marketed very effectively and can "reinvent" itself constantly, which is what they should have done to bring its ratings back anyway. Skip the areas under use and there's no chance of disrupting the filming. That's what Universal do, and it allows for rides that are unique because they've got more "side attractions" than there is time allotted for each full ride, so based on where they're filming etc. you get a "tailored" ride. Regarding the cars, last I went (and it has been quite a while admittedly), they were still parked out behind Batman still. Unless they're no longer there, I'd say that Australia Zoo have their own set - I would think that there's a company somewhere out there who makes them. There's no excuse for the Maverick set going to waste either. Maverick had limited appeal, Superstars had no appeal, but they shouldn't just call it quits because a lack of creative development lead to two fizzers. It just strikes me as odd that there are effectively less or the same number of attractions as years gone by, yet the ticket price still keeps heading up with the other parks, who tend to have an increasing attraction count. I'm not sure I'd say that Movie World is a ripoff, but I would say that Sea World and Dreamworld give more bang for your buck, which I guess is a nicer way of saying it's a ripoff.

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There's no excuse for the Maverick set going to waste either. Maverick had limited appeal, Superstars had no appeal, but they shouldn't just call it quits because a lack of creative development lead to two fizzers.
I'm told to 'watch this space', but we'll just see what develops. Though the creative department might be a bit busy working on SW's next new show.

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I could never understand why on earth they put that Looney Tunes Revue right at the front of the park in the strangest area and not tried to fit it into the Looney Tunes Village area. Talk about a bizarre mix of themes. I'm guessing it has something to do with space but surely there must be some more room for expansion out the back of Looney Tunes village?

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There's plenty of land usable back there, certainly enough for something the size of the Revue. It did used to be in this area, but it was Road Runner if I remember correctly that took its spot. I guess they were faced with the choice between a completely unused plot of land that would require significant ground work, or just plonking it wherever they can on some flat land somewhere. Predictably so, they take the cheap option, even if it ruins the integrity of a section of the park. I'm pretty sure it's an all-plywood construction, and the tent roof hardly screams out permanent so I would say that perhaps it could rather easily be removed if need be. Talk about a useless show though. I've seen it once, and it just has no forseeable purpose. It is performed once a day, has a capacity of something like 40 people, and isn't that good. The old show used to be in the dining area for the Looney Tunes eatery and just had normal table and chairs, no stadium or anything. That provided nice entertainment over lunch or a snack, and that's all it was worthy of. There's one thing that park's can't afford to be in the long run, and that's cheap. Disney have tried that in recent years, and it's been anything but successful. Same thing here, and quick-fix here and there might do the trick now, but it certainly doesn't lead to good numbers in the future. I'd rather Movie World hold off from creating attractions such as Looney Tunes Musical Revue, Star Parade, Bat Attack, The Official Matrix Exhibit (love that name, so much better than Matrix Revealed :P) etc., until they have a suitable budget to work with and create something that won't be cancelled a few short years down the track.

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The bigger mystery to me is why they need a labour intensive costume character show with strictly limited appeal which accommodates only the smallest number of people. What further compounds this mystery is that the costume characters make a lengthy appearance in the Star Parade, making a separate show seem even more redundant. Seriously, if its not a desperate attempt to use that queue house then I don't know what is. Personally, I'm quite liking what the park is doing with its street theatre, at a time when DW and SW more or less scraped their offerings, MW is actually added performers and different skits are performed during the day. I'm not a huge fan of the Star Parade (not enough room for the audience and having the parade floats turn around limits the number of floats you can have in the show, and really limits how good it can be. Plus the way its more or less a show spanning the street means you miss half of the action) but people seem to like it (go figure) so I can't really complain. I've not seen Bat Attack or the Matrix fight scenes, but I'm not expecting all that much out of them the day I do. The official Matrix Exhibit (and Harry Potter) scream of lost opportunity. I don't think its the quality in these attractions that presents a 'problem', more so the way its presented. Think of Tomb Raider at Dreamworld, and then think of how that could work with one of the sets, and more emphasis on being right in the middle of the action from the movie. Even if there is a 'crew member' trying to help you escape, you could put together quite a cool attraction. Have all the sets in an exhibit type thing next door and you've got all your bases (and demographics) covered.

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I didn't even bother going to Musical Revue,It just doesn't appeal.As for star parade,I think that It's pretty good,but then If you don't want to watch it then getting from one side of the park to the other can get difficult because it blocks everything up so much. The area for Musical Revue is a bit out of place,It just makes things more confusing at the front of the park.

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The last time I went to WBMW (about 1 month ago) I took the family on the Studio Tour. I hadnt been in years and was disapointed that it was just the special effects stuff. I never got to do Batman and the Road Runner coaster, because I wasted my time on the special effects tour. I think something new needs to be done!

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I agree, the Special Effects show is in dire need of a major facelift. The techniques displayed in it are so amazingly out of date that it's almost funny, especially how you're told all the way through how it's so cutting edge and innovative. None of the movies mentioned were anything special when they were first released, and now, 14+ years on, they're not getting any better, nor are the techniques used to make them anything short of laughable by today's standards.

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The effects themselves are ok (Blue Screen is still an important special effect) but just the show itself is all outdated. Memphis Bell? Lethal Weapon 2? These are movies you can buy for $2 at your local video shop. There is little or no appeal left in these films. Why not see how Peter Pan flies in the movie? Or how Scooby Doo was animated and added in with the actors in Scooby Doo (and why not get audience members to see how difficult it is acting with a character that doesn't exist)? And how the models were incorporated into Ghost Ship? Same basic formula but does allow the "We filmed these films here" angle.

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The blue screen's really been changed in favour of the green screen. Same basic idea, but someone figured that green works better in recent years. They show the high building scene, where they say that artists hand draw in added details. Computers have long made hand artists redundant in that particular field. I'd also suggest that the technology that drives Movie World's blue screen isn't half as good quality as your average consumer video camera these days. I never understood the Memphis Belle segment. It adds absolutely nothing that you didn't see in the first room. And of course finally, the system they've got for the Lethal Weapon sound effects room results in a near 100% failure rate for the participating guests. Get a new movie and fix up the cue system so that people actually have a chance of hitting them at the right time. Ghost Ship was indeed filmed at Movie World. One of the stunt performers was of course Mr Vic Wilson, "one of the best in the business," as we're told in the Police Academy Stunt Show (where he was responsible for stunt coordination).

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Green, Blue, potato patato really. With a new film and a bit of a mordern touch it wouldn't be so bad what ever the colour. The sound stage thing where they get it wrong kinda adds to the whole 'takes years to learn' thing, and when you get an announcer who has a bit of fun with how bad they did then you can get a good show. Though I must admit, I didn't quite get the Memphis Bell thing either. Something about models and a full size set and putting it all together? I always walked out going "and that last bit was about... what?" when I was much younger, and it still doesn't really seem to add anything significant. Like I say, just throw some new films in, and alter the effects and you've got a workable show. Still, if through movie magic they can get Sly to call the park Warner Brothers Movieworld instead of Warner Movie World then it'll be a start.

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Well yeah, that's exactly what Universal Studios did (I know the whole Universal vs. Warner Bros. thing is probably getting tired, but as with the Dreamworld/Cedar Point thing, it sets appropriately high levels to achieve). Come on, the Matrix was just dying to replace the Superman bit at the beginning. Probably replace the second set with your idea of mixing animation and actors or something, incorporating the Memphis Belle style section with the first room. put a new film in the third room and you don't even need anything more than that, just maybe upgrade some of the implements used for creating the sounds, and don't tell us two pieces of wood slapping together is the industry's way of creating a gunshot sound - even my good pals at Universal Studios used a capgun style system. I can't remember the exact system Universal Studios had, but I do remember their sound effects area had a far higher success rate than ours could ever hope for, thanks to a much better cue system.

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Well I totaly agree. I still remember my first visit to MW just after it opened. We went on the studio tour. Stopped off at some sets then onto the SPX stages. Was great at the time and with updating could be just fine. I think thats a load of crap about security issues. It can't be that hard to either keep people in the tram or just stop it if they manage to jump out. But I honestly don't thing too many people are going to go jumping from a moving vehicle.

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But I honestly don't thing too many people are going to go jumping from a moving vehicle.
Your kidding aren't you Rappster? Did you ever go on the Train at Wonderland? People jumped on and off that thing like it was a trampoline. The only way to stop people from doing this is to have locked doors or make it a bus with only one door. People are stupid they would put their personal safety at risk just to see, or possibly see a famous person. "The Bus is now leaving for Stumpys Jumpup, Western Australia"

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Yeah but funny that I don't really here of guets running amuck on live sets over at Universal... Perhaps they could get some less than cheap trams and just monitor them adequately and they'd solve the problem. No offence intended (my problem is with mgmt. not staff at WL) but those trains are pretty cheap and nasty and go so slow that its pretty easy to jump off. I wouldn't be stupid enough to jump off but then again I'm not many of the turds thats used to hang out at WL. I have not really seen many such undesirables at MW.

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