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So when does the end of theaters come?

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Old 07-18-2007, 06:39 PM   #1  
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Default So when does the end of theaters come?

Once HD prerecorded movies become commonplace and a critical mass of people own 1080-capable HDTVs, what's the point in going to a theater? As long as they keep projecting pricey film, can they get by? It's pretty rare that I go to see a movie and the theater is even half-full, let alone packed.

This isn't a new argument at all, but I for one see theaters coming to an end within my lifetime, perhaps in as quickly as ten years, and if they stick around it will be in a much smaller "special occasion" capacity, kind of like drive-ins. What will they do to compete? Make every theater and film Imax?
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Old 07-18-2007, 06:49 PM   #2  
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Theaters are more than just a place to see movies, they're also a social event. Not only is it a place for dates, but it's also a hangout place. I think from about late elementary school until middle school, there was no cooler place to be seen than the movie theater [provided no one saw your mom drop you off in her old station wagon.]

To add to that, most people can't afford a home theater. Nor can a home theater recreate the feeling of going to a real theater, since you don't have the 100+ other people to laugh/roar with you as the movie plays. And finally, people will still go to movies because movie studios will also release movies in theaters months in advance before they release the DVD, so they can double-dip most of the consumers who not only go to the theater to see the movie, but also purchase the DVD.
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Old 07-18-2007, 07:16 PM   #3  
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In the next 12 months you will begin to see a new version of the movie theater - Digital Cinema. They will be using 8 Mega-Pixel (4000x2000) projectors and source for cinema presentation.

This is 4 times the resolution of HDTV. The presentations will surpass 35mm film by almost 4X because what we see ina theater is a fraction of what 35mm is capable of due to lost generations (away from the Taking negative) and the high speed printing process.

It will rival 70mm presentations.

This will help bring more people back to the theaters.
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Old 07-18-2007, 08:00 PM   #4  
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I don't even think its a technical arguement. For me I would rather watch a movie on my 46" 1080p with great surround sound. The seating is always optimal, I can always pause it, and no jackoffs disrupting the movie experience. However as long as hollywood keeps releasing movies to theaters months before we can get them at home we will never see the end of theaters. There is always at least a few movies each year that I must see as soon as it comes out. (by the way transformers was visually awesome)

If hollywood released the movies on an HD disc the same day it came to theaters then the end of theaters would be within a few months.
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Old 07-18-2007, 08:58 PM   #5  
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Mswoods1 has the key point, most people can't afford a true home theater. Unless you have several hundred thousand dollars to build one that truly mimics a multiplex the experience just isn't the same.

Digital cinema, as Lee said, is on the way and should do a lot to improve the picture quality plus giving theater owners a whole new level of versatility in programming.

One recent experience I thought was pretty amazing was the Disney animated film "Meet the Robinsons" with a 3D version shown only in theaters with digital projection systems. (2 screens in Seattle) Instead of the old cardboard glasses we were given fairly heavy plastic ones (more like sunglasses). The film had incredible depth of field and sharpness, none of the old "fuzzy" images that gave you a major headache. The screens that showed the 3D version earned three times that of the standard release. I would love to see more features in the format.

In short I think it will be decades before "going to the movies" fades away.
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Old 07-18-2007, 11:18 PM   #6  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HiramAbiff View Post
...I for one see theaters coming to an end within my lifetime, perhaps in as quickly as ten years, and if they stick around it will be in a much smaller "special occasion" capacity, kind of like drive-ins. What will they do to compete? Make every theater and film Imax?
A dead prediction...for reasons already noted in the previous posts particularly the fact that as long as a higher quality experience is provided (subjective for some) and the desire to see a film with a large group months before available on DVDs.
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Old 07-19-2007, 12:17 AM   #7  
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I know of a young man who was saying the same thing 20yrs. ago because of VHS...Me ! ha ha !

I don't think the theatre experience can be recreated as has been said, for me it's the whole atmoshpere, at least at a quality theatre. IMHO

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Old 07-19-2007, 04:33 AM   #8  
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A good cinema will never be beaten with home equipment.

Sadly I know of only 1 cinema in the UK that I would consider to be "good" and it is about 150 miles away lol. The cinema near me (only one for 30 miles) is appauling, it costs $15 per person, they never broadcast the proper aspect ratio of a movie, and popcorn etc costs about $10 each. It's about $15 for a "combo" deal with popcorn and a drink.

So for 2 people sharing a combo, it's $45 and the picture quality is better in my room with many movies being availible on HD DVD/BluRay in the US within weeks of the UK cinema broadcast, and in some cases out before the UK cinema broadcast.
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Old 07-19-2007, 04:36 AM   #9  
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I can say movie theaters died for me when I got my first home theater 8 years ago. I haven't been to one since. I have no interest in watching a movie with a group of strangers. Talking, cell phones, sticky drinks spilled on the floor - I much prefer watching at home.

I can only speak for myself. Obviously, theaters aren't dead yet.
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Old 07-19-2007, 04:56 AM   #10  
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No, you can speak for me, too
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Old 07-19-2007, 08:56 AM   #11  
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Quote:
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I can say movie theaters died for me when I got my first home theater 8 years ago. I haven't been to one since. I have no interest in watching a movie with a group of strangers. Talking, cell phones, sticky drinks spilled on the floor - I much prefer watching at home.

I can only speak for myself. Obviously, theaters aren't dead yet.

I have been to a handful of movies over the past few years, but each time it is an even worse experience. The punks that can't turn off their cells phones, talk during the movie... etc etc. I have gotten the point that I will wait and watch on my very own big screen where I can control the atmosphere.
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Old 07-19-2007, 11:13 AM   #12  
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AMC built a new "megaplex" near me last year and I have to say it's an enjoyable experience. It has a beautiful 3-story lobby area, theaters are kept clean and the seating is comfortable with plenty of leg room (being 6'4" this is a big plus).

The major theater chains now run cleverly phrased spots that basically tell people to shut up and turn off your damned cell phones during the film. They seem to be having an effect, haven't heard either in quite some time.
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Old 07-19-2007, 11:29 AM   #13  
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My wife nad I went to see Transformers, and I wish I had waited with that one. Somewhat enjoyable if you just want a "ride" type experience, but little story, and obvious "oops" in the plausibility through out !

...and then the people, sadly they don't all turn off the cell phones, and then think they're being considerate by leaving "after" it goes off. That perhaps is what ruined the film for us, I don't know ?

To me it was a big commercial for GM's and not much more. Although stunning visually, I must say.

All that being said, I likely would've enjoyed "Die Hard" (which we went to see but was sold out, so transformers was the 2nd choice) on the big screen. I usually wait a few weeks for the crowds to die down though. We did that with POTC 3 recently and WOW ! as well as "The Last Mimzi" & "1408" ! Those were much better "experiences".

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Old 07-19-2007, 12:49 PM   #14  
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That's my "secret", wait until the film has been out for a week or so and go to a matinee. Doing that, I've never been in a theater more than a quarter full.

I didn't think Transformers lived up to the hype either. Guess I'm just getting kind of numb with all the cg based flicks trying to outdo each other. If you think about it, there wasn't a lot of detail in the "transformations" just a flurry of motion to the end result. POTC3, ok but a tad too long. Mimzy, a really enjoyable movie.
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Old 07-19-2007, 12:54 PM   #15  
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Yeah I always try and wait til the crowds have died down to see films in the cinema. My mates sadly think it's "cool" to go on the opening night, meaning ram packed, noisy and cramped
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