Movie Theaters Finally Starting To Offer Much More Than Just The Show

from the it's-about-time dept

alex writes "Apparently some movie theaters are finally coming to the realization what's been going on in the industry . As been previously mentioned theaters have to offer more to the customers these days to draw them in." This certainly sounds like what many people have been saying the theater industry should do for quite some time. Yet, we still get stories from the head of the MPAA about how it's downloading that's causing the industry trouble, rather than a terrible theater going experience, awful movies, and much more competition for entertainment dollars. Also, it's not just the theater experience they're working on, but improving the content. Thanks to digital projectors these new theaters can offer live concerts or sporting events on the really big screen. As the article above notes, one of these new theaters lets customers watch baseball games (while serving beer and hot dogs) on the movie screens. Of course, the companies that are adjusting and are making these changes are smaller, independent movie chains. The big chains with their huge megaplexes are the ones still struggling and worried that people aren't going to the movies any more. Maybe if their executives actually went to their theaters every once in a while to try to "enjoy" a night out at the movies, they'd understand why.


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  1.  
    identicon
    jdw242, Aug 17th, 2005 @ 10:29am

    Commercials

    Let's start with the obvious: beer on tap; large cups. Hotdogs, burgers, real food.

    Oh, and dump the GD commercials. I don't pay upwards of $10 to see the new Coca Cola commercial on a large scale. Marketing sometimes means being more creative than settling for the status quo...

     

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  2.  
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    dorpus, Aug 17th, 2005 @ 10:53am

    Re: Commercials

    So I take it you're too young to remember when theaters used to serve beer in the 1970s/80s, and you got to smell the stale beer in there? Not an experience you'd want to repeat.

     

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  3.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 17th, 2005 @ 11:12am

    Re: Beer

    Yeah. Beer in the US won't work as well as it does in Europe. For one thing, people in Europe aren't a bunch of hooting gibbons when they leave the house, and thus less beer is spilt onto the floor.

     

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  4.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 17th, 2005 @ 11:21am

    reserved seats

    I think the biggest 'innovation' that we can steal from the brits and use in this country is the reserved seat. I'm sick of having to come to the theatre early enough to ensure that my $12 ticket gets me more than neck pain from having to sit in a seat so pathetic I wouldn't have paid for it in the first place.

    Allow us to book in advance, and allow us to pick seats like at stadiums. This Cattle Stampede method of seating is childish, and I'll wait 2 months, rent a movie and bring it to my buddy's house so that I can be comfortable as well as entertained.

    Unfortunately, I think that adding a Balcony and a Dinner to the movie isn't going to give most people the incentive to come back to the theatre. Cinemas have lost the inertia, and they're facing churn now. Maybe if they rented paintball rifles so as to tag the holders of ringing cell phones and the white trash too lazy to get a sitter, there'd be incentive.

     

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  5.  
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    dorpus, Aug 17th, 2005 @ 11:24am

    Re: Beer

    No, Europeans just have their soccer riots instead, using their beer bottles and hot dogs as flying torpedoes.

     

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  6.  
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    fubert, Aug 17th, 2005 @ 11:56am

    Re: Beer

    how would you know? ever been to europe?

     

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  7.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 17th, 2005 @ 11:58am

    No Subject Given

    Amen.

     

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  8.  
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    Platypus, Aug 17th, 2005 @ 12:22pm

    Let's start with the really obvious

    Bring the ticket prices and concession prices back down to a reasonable level. A family of four with 2 kids is well over $20 before they even sit down, then if you got some soda, candy and popcorn, you are talking upwards of $40, just for a 2 hour (maybe) movie. How many families can afford to do that very often? If the theaters understood that by decreasing the per trip cost of the experience, they could boost attendance numbers significantly, perhaps they wouldn't be in such a state of panic now. The smaller chains do well with 2nd run shows, good food and concessions at reasonable prices. It works for them. Quit gouging your customers, and they may re-prioritize the product!
    And some american theaters still serve beer (McMenamin's pub theaters in Portland OR for example) and don't have that stale beer smell. Not that beer is a requirement for a good experience, but it helps for the 20 and 30 something crowds out there.

     

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  9.  
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    spam, Aug 17th, 2005 @ 1:12pm

    My ideas

    1)NO CHILDREN under 13 after 9pm. Period. 11pm showing? Leave your farking baby at home. Get it a sitter, but for gods sake don't bring it to the theatre.

    2)Cell phone rings? Misdemeanor "Disturbing the peace" charges. If it was a crime to have a ringing cell phone in a theatre, I think more people would pay attention, especially these tween idiots.

    3)Better food. Lower food prices. Popcorn shouldn't cost $6.

     

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  10.  
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    Rengeek, Aug 17th, 2005 @ 1:14pm

    Re: Let's start with the really obvious

    I've had the joy of going to a McMenamin's during a trip to Portland and hope to return someday. Recently here in Texas the Alamo Draft House chain has been converting old movie theaters to adult sanctuaries show current movies and server (good) beer and decent food at reasonable prices.
    My last experience at the local googolplex where for $8.00 I got to sit in an R rated movie listening to crying babies and jabbering teenagers while trying to enjoy my $4.25 small (stale) popcorn and $4.50 small (flat) soda.

     

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  11.  
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    Joe Schmoe, Aug 17th, 2005 @ 1:38pm

    No Subject Given

    Real food, even just a Subway or Quizno's (at REGULAR PRICING!).

    An open bar (after 9 or some hour so it is avoidable for those offended).

    Love seats! (half the people in there are on a date...)

    Tie up that kid with the damn orange flashight wand that combs the aisles 3 times during the movie for pirates [ARrrrrr!] and lock 'im in a closet! I'm tired of being spanked for something I didn't do.

     

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  12.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 17th, 2005 @ 10:15pm

    Re: Beer

    "Yeah. Beer in the US won't work as well as it does in Europe. For one thing, people in Europe aren't a bunch of hooting gibbons when they leave the house, and thus less beer is spilt onto the floor."

    It also helps that in Europe, the beer is worth NOT spilling on the floor…

     

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  13.  
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    Bob, Aug 17th, 2005 @ 10:24pm

    I can't think of anything wrong with movies today.


    -Seat-kickers
    -Freezing Temperature
    -Babies
    -Mobile phones
    -Screaming kids
    -Incessant coughers/snifflers/throat clearers
    -Sticky floors
    -Grimy chairs
    -Bouffant hair in the way
    -Chewy popcorn
    -No leg room your knees touch your chin
    -Chatterboxes
    -Soda that tastes like cough syrup
    -Sardine seating
    -Commercials
    -Sound turned up too loud or too low
    -Strange smells that aren't quite right
    -People who come in 15 minutes late and sit right in front of you or behind you to kick your seat
    -Overselling tickets to "pack da house" and those late people now getting po'ed and making a scene coz theres no seat left for them, save for the nosebleed row.

    My head is starting to hurt now.

     

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  14.  
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    Griffon, Aug 18th, 2005 @ 1:11am

    Bah

    Last movie I was at had an extra 20 minutes of TV grade commercials in front of the flick (even before the trailers). Man, it is shit like that, that keeps my money in my pocket and me out of theaters. I could not belive I paid to be so rrudly acosted like that.
    Sadly I think we will see way more of that before we see major theaters trying to innovate.

     

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  15.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 18th, 2005 @ 1:18pm

    Re: Bah

    Why should they innovate? They've got the DMCA and FBI!

     

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  16.  
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    m0deth, Aug 21st, 2005 @ 12:00pm

    Re: Beer

    Yeah we've all seen how un-gibbonly Europeans are at football(soccer) matches, nobody has every been rowdy at one of those, and no injuries or deaths have resulted either.....and to my knowledge, we Americans always hoot and holler whilst swinging our ten gallon hats after breaking thru the saloon doors coming out of the cineplex....., do yourself a favor...before you illustrate how ignorant Europeans are, just shhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, the movie's about to start.

     

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  17.  
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    vargas, Nov 19th, 2005 @ 1:04pm

    Movie experience

    I couldn't have said it better myself.

     

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  18.  
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    SuperJudge, Dec 20th, 2005 @ 4:26am

    Re: Beer

    Soccer balls in movie theaters, heh.

     

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  19.  
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    Brian, Jul 24th, 2006 @ 1:22pm

    Re: Beer in Theatres

    I am already subjected to far too many obnoxious theatre-goers, I can't imagine what it might be like with drunkards. No thanks.

     

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  20.  
    identicon
    actress.bz, May 25th, 2011 @ 11:54pm

    I think we will see way more of that before we see major theaters trying to innovate

     

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