Going to the movies is a punch in the dick.
Snot-nosed crying kids, $6 bottles of water, talkers, texters, and that one couple who keeps taking flash selfies during the emotional climax of The Force Awakens.
During the Amy Winehouse documentary, in an almost empty theater, an open-mouthed eater sat right behind me and somehow stretched his box of popcorn over two hours. At the end of it, I wasn’t ruminating on the perils of drug abuse, fame, and a natural-born talent’s tragic demise. I was thinking about how much I hated popcorn guy. How I hated his stupid face, his clothes, his friends, his co-workers, his family members who didn’t teach him better.
When I went to watch Birdman at the Landmark Sunshine Cinemas in Manhattan, Keanu Reeves happened to walk in and sit right next to me. He was by himself, and at first I was like “No shit, that’s Neo” (In my head).
Then he coughed through Birdman. All. The Way. Through It. Did I like Birdman? Don’t know. Couldn’t hear it. Sad Keanu.
Take a deep breath.
This was all before yesterday, when AMC Entertainment’s CEO said the chain would consider allowing texting in cinemas to attract more young people.
A room full of tiny glowing screens is exactly the opposite of what the dickery of modern movie-going needs. And AMC Entertainment’s CEO is too late anyway. We’re already at the dawn of the post-cinema-going world.
Which is why we should all be genuinely excited about ideas like Screening Room, which would charge $50 to let you watch new movies at home the same day they’re released in theaters.
You’re hard-pressed getting out of a movie theater for under $50 these days, what with the ticket, drink, snacks, and if you’re treating someone else. For the same price, you can skip traffic or public transit, lines at the box office, scrambling for a seat, and putting up with mouth-breathers.
You can pause the movie to go to the bathroom. Microwave and eat popcorn until you explode. Pop a cheap soda from the 12 pack in your fridge. Hell, sit naked with your cat for all anyone cares.
But what about the big screen?
I bought this $373 projector on Wirecutter’s recommendation years before I worked here (we have a partnership with Wirecutter). It’s cheap, reliable, has good picture, and has never let me down. Mad Max looked sick on this thing.
What about the social part of going to the movies and getting out of the house?
Go to dinner. Go bowling. Paint some ceramics. Go do literally anything else that doesn’t rely on trusting people in a confined space to be quiet and considerate.
What about the sweet sound?
I’m not a sound nerd, but how about this?
What about the atmosphere of being in a theater where everyone is laughing/scared?
Not worth it.
Why are you such a neurotic snob asshole about other people?
I don’t think I am. I just love movies and don’t want to be distracted. :(
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