What A Concept: Make It Enjoyable To Go To The Movie Theater

from the good-news dept

For many years, plenty of folks have been trying to explain that it's not "piracy" that's a threat to the movie industry, but the fact that the movie-going experience sucks. The movie industry has always really provided a service, that of "entertaining people," and that has nothing to do with copyrights. If people want to enjoy a night out, they are more than willing to pay for the experience. Of course, rather than make the experience better, many in the movie industry have instead latched onto the "piracy" excuse to actually make the movie-going experience that much worse. They don't do a good job of policing troublemakers and they treat their customers like criminals to ward off this bogus "piracy" threat. In the end, that just makes it worse. If you know that you're going to be forced to hand over your cell phone because it has a camera in it before you go to the movies, you're less likely to bother. Luckily some theaters, mostly independent ones, have started figuring this out and worked to improve the movie going experience and actually provide positive incentives to get people to go out to theaters.

Alex Billington writes in to point out his own analysis of Mark Cuban's attempt to make going to the movies an enjoyable experience again. Cuban's turning the latest theaters in the Landmark theater chain he owns into places adults want to go. No noisy arcades filled with kids, but nice upscale bars and lounges. He's also offering the ability to include food and snacks (higher end snacks) in the price of the ticket itself to avoid viewers feeling gouged when they see that they're paying $6 for $0.10 worth of popcorn. Finally, he's making the viewing experience even better -- putting in more comfortable and unique seating, including couches and even bean bags. The idea is to make it more like the home theater that so many people now claim is a better experience -- but doing so in a way that most people are unable to do with a home theater (bigger screen, better sound system, etc.). With so many examples of entrepreneurs making the movie experience better, why is it that the big studios and big movie chains still insist this is impossible?
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  1. icon
    Esahc (profile), 4 Mar 2010 @ 1:24pm


    I went to a place like that in SLC and left wondering why more movie theaters did not do this. It was the greatest movie theater experience I'd ever had. I think the place was called Brewvies.

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