For the past three months, movie box-office sales have been down in comparison to last year, due to moviegoers spending more time staying home watching movies and playing games on their own televisions. TiVo is teaching us to demand entertainment on our own schedules. Moviegoers prefer the flexibility of watching movies on their own schedules, in the comfort of their own home, on their own fancy home theater setups. In addition, time spent playing video games and on the Internet has increased greatly over the past few years. Add these factors to deceptive show times, price gouging refreshments, and rising ticket prices, and you get a lagging movie theater industry, who aren't doing a very good job wooing customers. Some are even suggesting now that the DVD be released at the same time as the movie itself. Are megaplexes doomed? Not quite, the Chinese recognize that movie going is a social experience and have made improvements that have resulted in growing revenue. So listen up US theaters: install more vivid picture and better sound, put in better seats, make it worthwhile to pay for good food, hell, even GIVE away a copy of the DVD after you watch the movie. Make it fun again to go to the movies, and maybe people will come back.
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