Monday, March 07, 2016

I Went To A Movie

The title of this post seems dumb, but if you know me at all, it makes sense.

A long running joke Carl and I have is that every time he asks me if I have seen (insert movie here) that he has to bet $5 on any hard way bet at the craps table.  The reason for this is that Carl likely has friends who are not insane like me and actually go to a movie once in a while, or watch one at home.  I, on the other hand, use my TV and leisure time to watch football, Bloomberg business news, MMA, or exercise.  And that is pretty much it.  I know absolutely nothing about pop culture.  My family always knows where to pigeon hole me when we play games like Trivial Pursuit.  History and Sports yes, pop culture, fail.

I took one of my kids to a movie Saturday.  The last movie I actually attended at a theater was with the other kid.  It was the Die Hard movie set in Russia.  I looked it up and that was in 2013.  I remember it because I thought that the movie was rated PG13 and it ended up being rated R.  Father of the year, again.  My child still brings up the climactic scene were the bad guy gets shredded in the rotors of a helicopter.

So on Saturday, my lovely and one kid were gone on a trip, so I asked the other child if she wanted to go to a movie.  She enthusiastically said YES and we were on the hunt for a movie choice.  Of course, I had heard of none, but now you can go online and watch trailers for all of them.  We settled on the new Disney movie, Zootopia.  The first thing that I saw was that it was on the UltraScreen at the local Marcus theater.  So what is that?

It is a giant screen, probably three stories high, and I am guessing at least a couple hundred feet wide.  Next, we were able to purchase tickets through an app called Fandango.  Everything was seamless and I charged the tickets to my PayPal account.  $12 a pop, plus $3 handling fee for a total of $27.  I guess the prices get cheaper if you go on off hours or during the week.  Oddly, I was never asked by anyone to prove that I had the ticket.


You can RESERVE seats - this is likely why I wasn't asked for anything by any ticket taker since it was a new movie, and the theater was pretty full.  The seats were full recliners, with electronic controls.  Even with the recliners fully put back, people had room to walk down the aisles.   Everyone had cup holders.  The theater had surround sound that actually worked.  It was amazing.

In the lobby, there was a full bar called Take Five, that served pub grub and cocktails and/or beers that you could bring into the theater.

I was pretty amazed at how far this experience has come in 3 years.  Eventually, I will take my wife there on a date for a burger, beer and a movie.  I was so impressed that I may even take a look at some of these companies for investment purposes.  If something like this can impress me, it can impress anyone.


Carl from Chicago said...

This is a good post. I was working on some new "disruption" topics and this one hits the nail on the head - these theaters are obviously upgrading because they need to differentiate themselves otherwise people will just stay home and watch movies on Netflix. Theaters were like something out of the 50's for many years with the same damn business model, sticky floors and make $ on bad popcorn and soda, and now they can be so much more.

Anonymous said...

I remember visiting a very interesting movie theater in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, in 2011, during OpenHouseNY.
The name reflects the fact thyat it's anot an ordinary place: Nitehawk Cinema. At the time it was a very novel idea.
See my pictures starting from this one and further to the end of the album.
Here's their site. Look up the menu and drinks, in particular. And the movies (sorry, films) they show.

Dan from Madison said...

That looks like a cool place. I would say those are movies, not films. They look like popular titles.