on October 25, 2012
Once you have walked through the rather grand gates of Universal Studios, you immediately arrive at Production Central. I thought the name meant that this area would be where all the special effects type rides would be, but it is not the case. I think there are actually studios here just behind the rides, which may be the reason for the name, but these aren’t publically accessible.There are three rides in this area of the park. The first is the brand new Despicable Me: Minion Mayhem ride. Not so much a ride as a 3-D experience. I had never heard of Despicable Me before visiting this ride, but from what I can gather it is a children’s film complete with lovable characters and fun storylines. It doesn’t matter if you haven’t seen the film – it won’t spoil your enjoyment of the ride. I loved it and thought it was very clever and a lot of fun. The only thing I will say is that you should try and get a seat in the centre of the auditorium because we found that the 3-D aspect worked at its best from a direct angle. The second ride is another 3-D adventure, well actually 4-D, Shrek. The ride starts off from where the first film finished, but again you don’t need to have seen the film to enjoy the ride. We were a bit disappointed in this one because the 4-D aspect means that your seats move to increase the interaction with the film, but we found that the seats made such a noise that it took away from the film. These two rides are both suitable for children and I think that they’ll enjoy both of them, although Despicable Me is only for people over 40 inches tall.The last ride in this area is the Hollywood Rip Ride Rocket, which is a full on white knuckle roller coaster. I am much too much of a wimp to go on such a ridiculous ride as this, but my husband went on it and couldn’t decide what was worse – the vertical climb up to the first big drop, the sheer length and number of turns and loops, or the fact that you don’t have over the should straps! I personally loved the fact that you are recorded during the ride and you can watch the video back afterwards, it certainly made for hilarious viewing for me! You can buy the video if you want. There are also free to use lockers at the ride entrance to store loose items. If you a single rider – definitely mention it as you join the queue because quite often you are able to skip to the front.There are a couple of restaurants and bars in this area, but none really of note – they are more places that you can grab a quick snack. This is also the area where the parade starts and finishes and that you can meet your favourite characters throughout the day, including the Simpsons and Shrek.
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