By Stephanie Stahl
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – A new 3D movie about a high-wire act is causing high anxiety for some audiences. They say “The Walk” is giving them vertigo and making them sick.
In the movie, the artist balances 1,362 feet above the ground without a net. Research has shown that watching 3D movies can immerse you in the experience, but can also lead to visual symptoms and even motion sickness.
The new movie about the daredevil 1974 tightrope walk at the World Trade Center is having an impact on audiences. Some people who’ve seen the movie say the life-like high-wire scenes in are making them sick.
“You have the illusion of motion while the body’s telling you that you’re not moving,” says ear surgeon Dr. Darius Kohan.
He adds the battle of the senses between the eye and the ear can cause the body to react:
“It feels like something is poisoned, so the reaction is gastrointestinal, you feel nauseous and dizzy.”
Research on 3D movies has shown that half of viewers report discomfort with about ten to twelve-percent actually getting ill.
A few things that can reduce the reaction:
Dr. Kohan recommends people sit as far away from the screen as they can. He says holding a hand over one eye during intense scenes can help the body reset. Plus avoiding big meals before show time can also help.
Film student Hanson Hee says he had a strong reaction to the movie:
“I can feel my heartbeat just instantly raced up.”
And if you’re sensitive to vertigo or motion sickness, experts say you may want to avoid the 3D experience.
Doctors also warn against taking Dramamine or other motion sickness medications just to view a 3D movie. It’s not even clear they would help anyway.