How many movies do you go to see in the theater? Are you there once a week? More? Less? Once a month? Are you there more in the summer for the blockbusters? Are you there more in the winter when there are fewer outdoor activities to fill your time?
I used to go about once a week. A group of us would grab dinner after work on Friday and then make our way over to the cineplex and settle in for the evening. We watched them all – comedy, action, drama, good, bad, ugly, thriller, indie, etc… And for the most part, we enjoyed them all too. It was money and time well spent.
So, what has happened to me since? I’ve only been to the theater to watch a movie once in the last five years. That’s right, once in five years. What changed? What happened? Was it the ever increasing expense? Was it a shift in the group dynamic? Was it a lack of quality in releases?
A major part of it was definitely a shift in the group dynamic which was a result of me leaving. I moved away from my home of 8 years to move closer to my girlfriend and soon to be wife. No more Friday dinner and a movie.
However, I think I would have stopped going as frequently anyway. With the rising cost of admission, and my need to start saving money for future (adult) endeavors (wedding, house, kids, life, etc…), at some point I would have done a cost benefit analysis and decided that it wasn’t worth going to see movies in the theater anymore. The (dis)comfort of the chairs, the rude attendees talking on their phones, kicking my chair, throwing popcorn, the inevitable sticky floor, and the lack of a pause button, would have all factored in with the price as well.
Netflix is “free,” Redbox is less than two dollars, and I can buy the DVD for less the cost of admission for two… I just have to wait. For movies with plot twists that means I will most likely know what is going to happen before I get around to watching the movie. But, from the comfort of my couch, with my girl wrapped up in my arms, that’s a price I’m willing to pay.
Have any of you noticed your movie watching habits change over the years? Would you rather see a movie in the theater still? Or, like me, have you learned to wait them out and enjoy them from home?