Times have changed and so has the movie theatre — we can dream of dark rooms filled with cigarette smoke and an air of sophistication with every seat occupied by men and women epitomes of glamour, watching one of the greats on the flickering silver screen. We can dream.
Let's face it though, we have to move on — it is the 21st century and we are busier than ever. It just isn't feasible for us to always get to a late showing after work, let alone live the romanticized fantasy of meeting people (and often soulmates) outside of the theatre doors as classic Hollywood has often taught us. I don't know about you, but I need to sit in front of the TV streaming numerous episodes before suddenly I realize I'm in the early hours of the day and I probably need to sleep. With the introduction of Original Films and Series (yes, I am looking at you OITNB), it's easier than ever to lose a few days to a marathon.
But what about our trusty theatre? Does this mean as these prodigious streaming services are brought in, and become a part of our everyday life, it's being neglected?
Do Theatres Show Too Many Blockbusters?
There are are few reasons we are going to the movie theatre less, time and convenience we have covered. What about the titles being released: It feels as if the numbers are slowly but surely dwindling out and the big blockbusters are being announced occasionally months or years ahead of time, to ensure we don't miss them.
Independent film could be the one to swoop in and save the day with a lower budget, but an arguably more exciting and unpredictable storyline and fresh-faced cast. Sequels are being pushed back to such an extent, each audience is becoming an eclectic mix. It's not such a bad thing when you think about it; generations will be able to discover and relive these films together. Finding Dory will have rows of adults and rows upon rows of teens, who saw Finding Nemo for the first time 13 years ago, as well as seats filled with kids the film is aimed at (and I assure you, I will be one of those adults!).
The Future of Film
Everything sold at the the cinema, from VIP seating, 3D screenings to pairs of 3D glasses, is also put in place to make us pay a little bit more. (Warning - more nostalgia *Rolls eyes*) In the last century, when film and movie theatres became a phenomenon, additions like these weren't needed to fill a theatre. They were meant to bring people together and entertain. The queues, crowds and ticket stubs were all part of the experience. A movie trip alone should not have to cost the earth - if the theatre is more accessible to kids, students with a low bank balance (like me) and people that work hard for their money, film itself will last longer, we will have more to see and more to talk about. We all want that, right?
"Cinema reflects culture and there is no harm in adapting technology but not at the cost of losing your originality" - Jackie Chan
It is remembering that for those two hours or so, you can stop multi-tasking physically or by thinking about what is happening tomorrow or next week. You can just listen and see the the reactions of everybody else and focus on what is happening in the film at that exact moment. When you leave, it is like time has stood still. It has happened within the music industry; Vinyl can now co-exist with Tidal and everything in-between. It is not about going against the mainstream but to remember where you started.