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Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Would You Pay $35 to See a Movie?

posted by on March 26 at 10:12 AM

How about if the theater offered reclining seats, valet parking, a cocktail lounge, and concierge service?

Some investors think it’s a good idea, and they’re opening one of their first luxury theaters in Redmond. No word on how the investors plan on dealing with the biggest problem of the exhibition business — inconsiderate assholes who talk/show up late/check text messages on their phones/generally treat the theater like it’s their own goddamn living room. “Upscale and affluent” moviegoers can be douchebags too.

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Hell no.

Posted by Mr. Poe | March 26, 2008 10:22 AM

How about if they showed good movies? That would be nice. Oh, wait -- there aren't any.

Posted by Fnarf | March 26, 2008 10:24 AM

Dude, the Arclight in LA is pretty "luxury" and A) it doesn't keep the a**holes out and B) it's still not $35!! $35 is insane.

Posted by arduous | March 26, 2008 10:26 AM

If they had light rail to it.

Oh, wait, Bellevue - suuuure.

Posted by Will in Seattle | March 26, 2008 10:28 AM

Not unless that $35 ticket includes a cocktail lounge with an open bar. Doesn't look like it does. "Moviegoers will have to pay extra for any food they order, however."

Posted by spencer | March 26, 2008 10:31 AM

I foresee people with the "as a matter of fact, YES, I do own the road" attitude showing up. For $35, you should be able to take a dump off the balcony.

Posted by Mushroom | March 26, 2008 10:33 AM

I want only the finest of service and amenities when I watch Drillbit Taylor.

Posted by JC | March 26, 2008 10:35 AM

The fatal flaw:

Anyone who can afford to go to a theatre like this on a regular basis can afford to have a theatre in their mansion.

Posted by UNPAID BLOGGER | March 26, 2008 10:35 AM

I'd pay $35 to watch that theater burned to the ground.

Posted by Reverse Polarity | March 26, 2008 10:38 AM

This seems like the only likely future for theater-going, in an age when most movies are available online well before release to the big screen. The trend toward gimmickry like IMAX or Cinerama size screens, digital projection and 3D effects to make going to see a movie an even-more ridiculously priced "event" will continue as well.

Posted by Peter F | March 26, 2008 10:39 AM

Only if it was by that Canadian couple behind "Who Needs a Movie?"

Posted by Ziggity | March 26, 2008 10:39 AM

There already are theaters with cocktail lounges, upscale food, stadium seating with wonderfully comfortable seats and, at two in Dallas, even valet parking (at least the developments they are in have valet but it comes to the same thing). And they charge $10.

Posted by sam | March 26, 2008 10:44 AM

No way. Never, never, never. I have a full bar and spacious seating right here at home. The price is right too. I also can't imagine having servers coming in throughout the movie. I honestly don't know anyone who would spend that kind of money on a movie --and I live on the east side.

Posted by ahava | March 26, 2008 10:46 AM

Let's see: $35 to see a movie that I may like in a comfortable theater or $20 to buy that same movie on DVD to watch in the comfort of my own home without dealing with the usual asshats. Or $10 if I wait for it to appear in the used bins. Or renting it somewhere.

I'll stay home thanks.

Posted by Chris B | March 26, 2008 10:47 AM

I have reclining seats and cocktails in my home for free. Also, I have a parking spot. Also, it's not in fucking Redmond.

Posted by Baxter | March 26, 2008 10:54 AM

um, i already go to The Big Picture (in Seattle, although i hear the Redmond branch is nice). why would i pay three times as much for almost the same experience?

Posted by ironymaiden | March 26, 2008 11:07 AM

I would probably go once in while if it were someplace less hellish then Redmond.

Posted by Giffy | March 26, 2008 11:09 AM

They are talking about putting one in a Chicago suburbs too. The thing that's crazy is that everything is extra - valet, concierge, food, drink. So, what are you getting, other than a comfier seat? Maybe the theory is that if you're going to a $35 movie, you won't have to mix with the riff-raff.

There's already at least one movie theatre in my area that I know of that has a bar/lounge in the complex. And the price is not higher than other theatres...

Posted by Julie | March 26, 2008 11:11 AM

Fuuuuck that shit. $35 should come with a screening, a DVD to take home, a photo of you enjoying the film, a ticket to Universal Studios, and a hand job.

Posted by Carollani | March 26, 2008 11:14 AM

No, I wouldn't, for the same reason I don't pay for first class plane tickets. Peripheral luxuries or not, all you're doing is watching a movie. I can do that at home for the cost of Netflix or any other video rental, and whatever food items I elect to buy (at a much lower cost) at the supermarket.

Posted by Gomez | March 26, 2008 11:22 AM

I'd much rather go to Central Cinema.

Posted by madamecrow | March 26, 2008 11:29 AM

Will they have a suitable climate control system? Every time I see a movie I have to dress like I'm going camping so that I don't freeze to death.

Posted by Jim Demetre | March 26, 2008 11:35 AM

@12 wins.

Posted by Will in Seattle | March 26, 2008 12:00 PM

didn't anyone tell these geniuses that we are quickly heading into a recession? the first thing to go, let alone be adopted in the first place, is a $35 per movie ticket. and as someone else mentioned, any robber-baron types who are living large in the coming economic winter already have a private movie theater in their own sprawling mansion.

Posted by ellarosa | March 26, 2008 12:28 PM

This will not work. Someone tried a first run movie theater with inexpensive seats and super pricey food, and it failed quickly. The Central Cinema succeeds thanks to good food at a good price and a quirky lineup.

Posted by Gitai | March 26, 2008 12:29 PM

Let me be the first self-identified Eastsider to say "Blerghghghghghghghfuckno" while spontaneously combusting.

Please dear Jebus, don't let them build anything so transparently Republican in Issaquah. Ever.

Posted by Big Sven | March 26, 2008 12:32 PM

With the ever growing affordability of flat screen High Dev tv's why not invest in one of those and sit in your damn comfy chair?

Posted by Todd | March 26, 2008 12:32 PM

I have all those amenities in my living room already. So I'll stay home, enjoy my cocktails in a reclining seat while watching a film, and spend the $35 on weed instead. It's a win-win.

Posted by Hernandez | March 26, 2008 12:48 PM

What #21 said.

Posted by Andy Niable | March 26, 2008 12:58 PM

Plus at home I can get baked.

Posted by TJ | March 26, 2008 12:59 PM

For $35 you can get a ticket to The Legitimate Theatre, i.e. a live play.

Posted by Johnny | March 26, 2008 2:08 PM

The Bear's Tooth in AK has two restaurant's, a full food serving counter, fresh local brewed beer on tap and they took out every other row to facilitate tables. They show second run movies and its friggin genius. General tix are $3, reserved seating for $5.


Posted by Jeremy | March 26, 2008 3:09 PM

I MIGHT pay $35 if my deeply padded Corinthian-leather Lazy-Boy recliner seat comes with multiple massage settings, and a control-panel that allows me to taser any asshole who talks up during the movie.

And it has to come with a "trucker's friend" so I don't have to get up and go pee after downing that $20 128-ounce Diet Coke.

Posted by COMTE | March 26, 2008 3:14 PM

Home: my liquor, my toilet, no kids, no strangers, no need to hide my liquor from ushers (and no ushers). Fully stocked kitchen, Netflix, my bong, ability to pause the movie to use my bathroom.

Yeah, home wins again. Why didn't they just put this in downtown Bellevue? I'm sure Kemper Freeman would endorse it-- it's made for keeping the poors out.

Posted by Jessica | March 26, 2008 4:57 PM

Asking a bunch of low-income, crappy-apartment-dwelling Seattlites if they would patronize a tony overpriced movie theater in the suburbs? Yeah, that's not going to get any predictable results?

Posted by tomcat98109 | March 26, 2008 9:07 PM

I have all that stuff at home AND I can stop the movie to get more popcorn or hit the bathroom without missing a second of the action. Plus if the movie sucks I am only out the rental fee.

Posted by Gindy | March 27, 2008 4:32 AM

I understand the desire to go to movie with people who actually want to watch the film, but paying $35 to do it?!?

I prefer Central Cinema here or the Alamo Drafthouse in Austin.

Posted by Dawgson | March 27, 2008 9:00 AM

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