You can ask anyone I know well–I love going to the movie theatre. I love going to catch a new movie and getting dinner at the same time–if you’re familiar with Alamo Drafthouse, then you’ll know the type of experience I am speaking about. (Alamo still remains my favorite movie theatre chain out there)
Now, obviously, with the COVID-19 pandemic still raging in our neck of the woods, movie theatres are kind of different. I myself haven’t stepped foot in one since the beginning of the pandemic last year, and to be honest, I haven’t been itching to go back to one since then.
Keep in mind that whenever a new film came out, almost every month, I would be firmly planted in my seat. It was a go to date night for me and my wife, and we would try to go to a movie at least once a month, if not much more during the summer when movies were really coming down the pipeline.
Now, however, things are confusing and the landscape of Hollywood is changing. Movie studios are trying to adapt, and movie theatres are just trying to catch a breath of fresh air before they are suffocated by the lack of very little business.
You’ve probably seen recent news that Warner Bros. decided to take their entire 2021 slate of films and release them in tandem with a theatrical release on HBOMaxx. It’s a bold strategy–and one that reeks of desperation for people to view films that are now beginning to stockpile. It’s also a seemingly desperate ploy to get people on the HBOMaxx bandwagon–because let’s be honest, HBOMaxx sucked when it first launched and I think it still kind of does…
I sincerely hope that the pandemic doesn’t kill theatres in the process, it would be quite a shame. Warner Bros. really pissed a bunch of people off when the announced that they were doing this strategy–blindsiding their creative teams, including Christopher Nolan who heavily pushed for a theatrical release of Tenet and got lukewarm results upon doing so.
I don’t quite know what the best strategy is–to wait until this is all “over” and release films then, or to get it in front as many eyeballs as possible via streaming. Certainly, I have been enjoying the convenience of not going to the theatre–but I have felt something missing.
Most recently I watched Soul via Disney+ and Wonder Woman: 1984 via HBO Maxx. Both experiences were good, visually anyways–my 4K TV is certainly not on par with the projectors and large-display screens that a theatre would have, but it gets the job done. However, I think I miss most the immersion that a theatre has to offer; the soundtrack for Soul was killer, and hearing it on a proper Dolby Atmos sound system sweeping all around me would have frankly made me enjoy the film even more than I already did.
It’s been interesting–I’ve had the same TV experience for awhile and am now contemplating sinking more money into that experience. A better TV–a better sound system, because let’s be honest–we’re coming up on a year since this pandemic really took root and there are no signs of it slowing down anytime soon. I am curious if I will ever step into a theatre again–what will the movie that finally forces my hand? The new James Bond film, No Time To Die? It’s set to release in April, pushed back from November of last year but I think it will be delayed yet again.
I’m curious what your thoughts are. Have you stepped back into a theatre again? Are you going to make the trek back into the theatre? Or are you satisfied that your home is the new box office?