Going to the Cinema

Recently there has been quite a bit of Netflix bashing from big name directors like for example here and from the film festival going crowd such as can be seen here. My personal take is that they need to understand how cinema has changed for the general public and I will do so by drawing on the cinema going experience I went through just yesterday. 

So first thing I had to book the tickets I couldn’t just turn up, the movie I wanted to see was showing every hour however I wanted to see the movie in 2D which had very limited times. Why does the industry still insist on movies being shown in 3D which everyone I speak to detests? The prices of an adult tickets themselves are £10,£11, £12 or even more. My local cinema which is no longer that local involves at least a 30 minute commute each way. So that’s an hour of my time that I’ve lost before I’ve even started watching the movie. So now I’m sitting in the cinema and before the movie has started I have to sit through 20 minutes plus of adverts. Why do I have to do that having already paid nearly £15 for a ticket? The movie starts and my fellow audience members decide that this is when they will make the most noise. The constant noise of the rustling of food packaging, soft drinks cans being opened, and worse ( the guy next to me decided to pop open a can of tuna half way through the movie!) Then there were the group of teenagers who decided to keep switching on the torch on their phone. This seemed to annoy so many people that I saw about 3-4 people leave the Cinema to complain about it (they were asked to stop by the cinema ushers eventually). The movie had bits that were subtitled, there was a woman who was slow in reading them and kept turning to her partner to ask what they said. And then there are the people who are constantly checking their mobile phone. Then imagine after going through all of that the movie you were watching wasn’t that good? (The movie I was watching was pretty damn fine but I’ve seen plenty that haven’t been.)

This ladies and gentlemen is the common cinema going experience for the general public. Is it any wonder that audience members prefer the cheap and ease of use of Netflix and similar services? 

I love going to the cinema, I agree with Scorsese when he described going to watch a film with fellow audience members as akin to a religious experience. I like the fact that I can concentrate on something I love with no distractions. However the modern cinema audience and the business model that surrounds it has gotten disfunctional. Is it any wonder that people would prefer to sit at home in the comfort of their own house with their 54″ TV and have much more control over their viewing experience? 

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