So I finally watched it.
In 24fps, Dolby Atmos (supposedly, as advertised on Cineplex website), and Ultra AVX (Cineplex specialized theater specs).
Theatre supposedly was Atmos but there was no Atmos logo. Just the regular Dolby 7.1 logo.
There are only 2 theaters in sane distances to watch the movie.
One location had 48fps and 3D, but no Dolby Atmos or UltraAVX.
The one we went to was 24fps, 3D, UltraAVX, Dolby Atmos and had DBox motion seats (DBox is also available on certain blu-ray titles that can be used with same-company DBox home theater chairs).
We didn't buy tickets in time to watch it in DBox.
And I'm not entirely sure it was Dolby Atmos, since no logo or big promotion on Atmos (it being a new audio technology for consumer markets). And it was relatively quiet for a movie.
Usually that specific theater cranks movies all the time. On several occasions, they blew speakers in the final act of the film.
Probably why The Hobbit seemed quiet.
The 24fps version was okay. You get used to it, after having watched the first 2 in HFR.
The motion blur and judder for camera panning is obvious.
The 3D has quite a bit of detail for it being 24fps. There is definitely some depth to it.
Not a lot of popping-out 3D effects that most people (yet don't know it's the kind of 3D that tires your brain out the quickest).
There was one scene where an arrow shooting (aimed right at the camera) at the screen is sudden made me duck my head.
But for the most part, it was visually nice to see such depth in the scenes.
Some really nice musical cues in there.
The scene where Thorin catches Bilbo looking at something and then freaks out, and it turns out to be an acorn...
Has a really nice surround sound track. Can't remember if it's on the OST.
But I just remember loving the sound of it all around me, for the music.
A few other cues came in really nice.
The horns that every race uses is extremely nice. The humans saluting Thorin is very, very, very nice.
The nice little touches, especially that touch on The Lord of the Rings trilogy are extremely pleasant.
The end credits were mostly the heroic themes and the lovely melodies.
Not much on the action or epic themes you'd want to hear.
The movie was great. Loved the sound design to it. They definitely had fun in the sound department for this installment.
Benedict Cumberbatch really just resonates in you and gives Smaug and Suaron completely new eerie aspects.
It's almsot surreal when Smaug talks, now that you've made it this far into the films.
The battles were glorious. Not entirely like Return of the King glorious.
ROTK was on a grand scale, like playing Axis And Allies board game.
TBOTFA is more playing the Risk board game.
There was certainly a lot of detail put into the graphics, much like TLOTR trilogy, but these ones you can really see the improvements in CG.
Every army/race had a nice introduction (except the humans, they were just there for support/skirmishes).
The slow motion was improved, probably due to the filming in 48fps.
I also noticed after I got home, there was a scene missing that was shown in the first trailer.
There's a scene where a Dwarven chariot (Dwarven because the Dwarves of Erabor ride rams) that carries a compact ballista (very short bow in the front).
The design is also largely straight-edge, rectangular, square and not much circles/curves (except for the wheels).
They were charging wolves head-on.
This was not in the movie I watched.
Clear shot of the ballista in front.
wolves not in movie.