<<By contrast, the best motion picture color image I have seen in the last few years was a showing of a nitrate Technicolor dye-transfer 35mm print of a 1944 US Army film about the WACs>>
I don't believe that, if I understand you correctly, the nitrate base is better than the acetate "safety" one, and many release prints are made on the super tough polyester base.
Technicolor Dye Transfer I have not knowingly seen, it may well have been an early example of a superior technology replaced by a cheaper, lower quality one.
i have read somewhere that digital projectors require reprogramming by a not so cheap tech when a programme change from 2D to 3D occurs and that some cinemas don't stump up the money and the light levels are a casualty. My information here is a bit urban myth-ish, maybe someone knows more.