In 1947, Sergei Eisenstein claimed that once perfected, stereoscopic cinema would allow for ‘a profound fusion and interpenetration of artwork and audience, artist and consumer’. While he may not have anticipated that today wearing virtual reality goggles, we could join a pilgrimage to Mecca or walk on Pluto, he did imagine a kind of immersive storytelling that broke from Soviet montage techniques of the 1920s. Stalinist cinema of the 1930s strove for a kind of three-dimensionality and simultaneously immersivity in seeking to ensure the penetration of the cinematic image into the spectator’s reality. My talk will consider the operative ontologies manifested by new media through the prism of Eisenstein’s writings on stereocinema and the cultural sphere from which they emerged. Looking at contemporary uses of 3-D and VR through this historical prism, we may very well want to question why cinema wants to do this and what ends these effects serve.