Movie Tickets Reach $20

Starting with Shrek Forever After, three AMC theaters in New York will begin selling $20 adult movie tickets on their IMAX screens. Even for a loose-moneyed film buff like me, that's just too much. UPDATE

After The Dark Knight, the industry realized just how much IMAX ticket prices could bolster profits. After Avatar and Alice In Wonderland, the same proved true, along with the enticement of 3D.


(Evidently, domestic grosses of $533,345,358, $748,590,960 and $331,666,06, respectively, weren't enough for Hollywood—nor was the fact that Avatar made $120,000,000 just on IMAX screens, just in the US.)

So a more extreme version of gouging begins at theaters. And just as the public cried about $10 movie tickets while continuing to flood the theaters in droves, many will still pay $20 to see the latest Shrek, complaining about it until they forget that the world was ever any different.

But you know what? I won't, not now or in the near future. And I'm about as fiscally irresponsible and movie obsessed as idiots come. That's a bad sign for movie theaters and studios alike, as it means the more sane amongst you will bail on theaters for sure (if you haven't already).

(Oh, but compared to movie theater popcorn, tickets are still pretty cheap!) [WSJ]


UPDATE: According to an internal AMC memo, "several locations assigned the wrong premium pricing scheme for SHREK FOREVER AFTER. As a result several social media venues are blogging about '$20 SHREK tickets at AMC'. However, now that most theatres have corrected the pricing scheme, the story has become 'AMC reacts to customer backlash and reduces SHREK ticket prices'." Whatever the case, it looks like we've staved off the $20 tickets...for a while, at least.


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I just paid $20/ticket to see Iron Man 2 at the Muvico near my house in Southern California. And it's not the first time I've done this.

Muvico has 4k projectors and the best sound system I've heard in a theater. Their seats are double wide, extremely plush, include armrests with little tables (important in a second), and in the premium ($20) seating are grouped separately essentially into loveseats. Your get to pick where you want to sit too; it's pretty awesome. All of that normally costs $11.50. So why did I pay $20? The bar.

For the expensive seating I get to get a couple of drinks from a well stocked bar with name-brand well alcohol and a good beer/wine selection, and it's reasonably priced at about $4/drink. I also get a voucher for some popcorn and a non-alcoholic drink, and that's a nice touch. The bottom line of the whole thing is that there is a time and place to pay $20 for a movie ticket, but let us be honest, Shrek 3D aint it. At least without booze.