With streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon provided access to countless movies it’s been hard for theaters to keep up. If you’ve been to a movie in the last year (or 5) you’ve definitely noticed the insane number that comes after the “$” when you check out—to see a movie! Let’s not even get into the sky-high prices for IMAX.
Recently there’s been a push toward more luxury theaters offering services such as dinner with your movie, select screenings of a small curated list of movies, chairs that recline all the way back, or—the most exciting of all—the ability to purchase alcohol.
However, these fancy amenities tend to “justify” the absurd prices of movie tickets. For instance, the brand new, top notch, eight-screen theater in Hell’s Kitchen, The Landmark at 57 West.
At The Landmark you
can have to reserve a seat in advance for one of their select movies. Seats vary between comfy leather chairs and relaxing electric recliners—there’s no question that you’ll feel right at home. They also offer gourmet hot dogs, local products like Fat Witch Brownies and Bronx Pretzels, and a full bar. With an adult ticket priced at $18.50, it’s comparable to a Regal or AMC ticket.
Although there’s been more luxury theaters such as this one popping up around town, there’s an app that has a different idea of what the future looks like for movie theaters.
The app? Movie Pass. They’ve rolled out a plan to turn movie goers into a subscription-based experience, much like the streaming services already do.
For $9.95 a month you can see unlimited movies in theaters. While frequent movie goers are ecstatic about this—and those who’ve been avoiding the movie because of cost—big partners like AMC are concerned that’s way too low and that they’ll lose money.
According to a report by Variety, Movie Pass CEO Mitch Lowe (a co-founder of Netflix) “acknowledges that his company is subsidizing ticket buyers and will lose money in the process. However, he believes that MoviePass will be able to prove its value to movie theaters and studios, and that in the future they will cut the company in on their additional profits.”
There may not be fancy reclining chairs, booze, or dinner options at these theaters but for 10 bucks does it matter? That’s less than any ticket you’ll buy in the city for ONE movie, let alone unlimited!
However, the question we’re still all asking is: which method will end up being the future of movies?