By Liz Lopez
Source: Twentieth Century Fox
“Passport to Iron City” is a live immersive event, inspired by the sci-fi film “Alita: Battle Angel,” adapted from “Battle Angel Alita,” and directed by Robert Rodriguez. The event is operating in Austin, Los Angeles, and New York City and appears as a recreation of the film’s set. I did not have a guest attend the event with me, therefore I selected a color for my badge lanyard and off I went to wait in the “Kansas” bar to see what was next. I was drinking my beverage at a table and a young man with a different colored lanyard than mine pointed to a sticker on the table and said I was sitting at the wrong table. Well that was not a friendly start to “happy hour” and off I went to find the “appropriate” table. Lucky for me, a tribe of similar colored lanyards showed up as guests assigned to my “team.” As it turns out, they came as a “team from work” and were so welcoming and ready to compete in a variety of puzzles, games and other activities that appear to be in a market of sorts for approximately 40 minutes. The games in Iron City are operated by actors in character as locals from this far away place.
The experience felt rushed and there is not enough time to view the set in detail. I feel like I spent more time in the “Kansas” bar waiting alone/with teammates before the adventure was to begin. At the beginning, the “team” was together, but then with all the hurriedness, it became an “individual” approach to playing games. We were racking up points, but unfortunately not enough to be first. When an opportunity was offered, the team leader gambled off the team credits to scoot on up the leader-board, and we still did not make it.Ultimately, you decide if you think this might be a unique enough experience for you and your friends that is said to be a sort of “escape room” experience. I saw the movie “Escape Room” that opened the first week in January and this experience is nowhere like it – this set does not change temperatures from extreme heat to extreme cold, either.
The “Passport to Iron City” experience is available in three locations, including northeast Austin, 1901 E 51st St., Stage 3. The website indicates there are still “early bird tickets” through February 17th and also offer an “Alita Film Release Special” that you can read more about on Passport to Iron City – Explore the world of Alita – Battle Angel
About: The action-adventure epic film, “Alita: Battle Angel” from producers James Cameron and Jon Landau (“Avatar”) and director Robert Rodriguez opens nationwide on February 14. When Alita (Rosa Salazar) awakens with no memory of who she is in a future world she does not recognize, she is taken in by Ido (Christoph Waltz), a compassionate doctor who realizes that somewhere in this abandoned cyborg shell is the heart and soul of a young woman with an extraordinary past. As Alita learns to navigate her new life and the treacherous streets of Iron City, Ido tries to shield her from her mysterious history while her street-smart new friend Hugo (Keean Johnson) offers instead to help trigger her memories. But it is only when the deadly and corrupt forces that run the city come after Alita that she discovers a clue to her past – she has unique fighting abilities that those in power will stop at nothing to control. If she can stay out of their grasp, she could be the key to saving her friends, her family and the world she’s grown to love.