Okay, so the theater owners’ recent innovation, for the first time in nearly 50 years, is to add additional costs for movies that are test well (read: will be popular). Are they out of their fucking minds?
To be fair, we’ve seen some innovation, 5.1 sound, lounge seeding, food delivery at your seat. But those screens, by and large charge a premium, that is almost doubled the price of a regular ticket. So, there’s already a price increase.
Now they’re going to take a popular item and hose us with that additional cost movies that are popular? Really, that’s the innovation they’ve come up with?
The theater-going has been in decline for over a decade (nearly 2 decades to be exact). To say it’s because of the pandemic is not accurate. Has revenue been up? Yes. However, tickets sold sales since 2003. The number of movie-goers has been consistently trending down year-over-year. That means fewer people are going to the theater.
Now add to that streaming – I watched the 2020 Wonder Woman movie with my family, for $15 a month on HBO max – for everybody in my house, I didn’t have to leave. I sat on the couch. AND It was comfortable and simple.
We enjoyed watching the movie as a family (although to be honest, it was a pretty terrible movie). We had a good time with the family and I didn’t spend a hundred dollars on tickets nor did we leave the house.
In addition to that, I didn’t spend $400 on candy, snacks, soda, and popcorn. All of which comes with pricing that is 20x to 100x times higher than I see out in the wild at the CVS or Walgreens down the street. And on top of that, I have to sneak in my candy for my kid if I want to be a cheap idiot (avoiding $9 for a box or two of milk duds). OK, I’m exaggerating about the prices at the theatre concession stand, but it does feel like a mugging.
The theater owners lack vision, they lack passion, and they don’t understand that the light of an oncoming train is coming at them. They think that’s light at the end of the tunnel. No, no, no, no, no. That IS the light of an on-coming trained.
This industry is in decline. Raising the cost to see movies in a theatre will further hasten that decline. Revenue might be up and the short term bottom line might get a crack-hit from the extra $1.00 per ticket, but it will drive movie-goers away.
The main problem with a movie theatre experience is that they have not really innovated in a half-century and they will, very soon, become dinosaurs that will go away. And you know what? They fucking deserve it. They deserve everything they’re getting. Harrumph, $4.50 for a fucking box of Milk Duds and $15.00 for a soda and a popcorn (I am not exaggerating here). REALLY! Burn it to the ground mother-fuckers!