' ' Cinema Romantico: 5 Possible Luxury Movie Theater Futures

Thursday, May 23, 2019

5 Possible Luxury Movie Theater Futures

My dream vacation, as My Beautiful, Perspicacious Wife knows, is Switzerland. That’s not just because of the Olympic Museum in Lausanne (though the Olympic Museum in Lausanne has amplified the dream). When I was tasked with giving a presentation in sixth grade about my dream vacation and chose Switzerland the Olympic Museum hadn’t even opened! No, the first time, I think, I saw an image looking up from a picturesque, snowy Swiss street at the impressive Alps it became my dream, and that dream has only intensified as I’ve aged and realized my propensity for living life by just watching life go by, which is to say sitting at a Swiss street cafe and sipping coffee and staring up at the Alps for hours and hours sounds like my kinda bliss. You know what doesn’t sound like my kinda bliss? The story last week that a movie theater in Spreitenbach, Switzerland has constructed a VIP cinema where theatergoers willing to pay the price can watch a movie in a double bed, an abhorrent business model that has got me rethinking this whole dream vacation scenario (not really).

Cinema Romantico has long decried this growing trend of luxury movie theaters. Reserved seating, plush recliners as seats, dinner delivery straight to your plush recliner is an experience designed to entice possible viewers in a market where moviegoing is, relatively speaking, on the wane. Yet an experience designed to make the movie theater more like home inevitably translates to moviegoers treating the movie theater like home. They take off their shoes; they check their phones; they talk. The scourge of reserved seating only makes it worse. When I saw “First Man” the guy sitting next to me kept ordering food to his seat – soda, nachos, Twizzlers. Here was a movie doing all it could to put you, viewer, in Neil Armstrong’s headspace inside a NASA tin can and here was incessant dinner delivery a couple feet over continually pulling me right back out. People, as I have lamented before, no longer want to meet movies on their terms; they want movies to meet them on their terms. Beds inside a movie theater is a logical extension of this trend. And as the old school movie-going experience, as much a meaningful thing to me as living life by just watching life go by, hurtles toward its end point, it got me to thinking about what other tragic way stations we will find on the way to that end point. What are the next frightening frontiers for going to the movies?

5 Possible Luxury Movie Theater Futures

1. Sur La Table® Cooking Class

If plush recliners and snack trays have strained to turn the movie theater into your living room, and if Switzerland’s beds are straining to turn the movie theater into your bedroom, then it only makes sense for the movie theater to try and become the kitchen. Perhaps by way of AMC Movie Theatres synergizing with Sur La Table® to erect AMC Sur La Table® Movie Theatres where you buy a ticket with friends to make Gazpacho while watching the latest JLo rom com or Liam Neeson opus of revenge.

2. Isolation Booth

Ichiran Ramen in Japan has brought solo dining into the mainstream, creating isolation booths where individual diners sit by themselves behind black curtains to devote full concentration to the act of eating noodles. Ichiran has even made inroads into America, opening a restaurant in Brooklyn. Perhaps they can expand to the art of cinema? Granted, a cinema isolation booth would put a serious crimp in the whole Big Screen Experience, but, seriously man, what twenty-tens whippersnapper wants that? No, our Ichiran Cinema Isolation Booths will imagine a more lavish version of a first class airline entertainment, paying exorbitant amounts for, like, a 10 inch screen and all the movie options you want, going out to the theater to watch one movie for five minutes, another movie for ten minutes, another movie for twelve minutes, and then fall asleep.

3. Luxury Cruise

Why just go to the movies when you can sail away to the movies instead?! Marvel Studios in conjunction with Royal Caribbean® Cruise Line invites you to plan your entire vacation around the movies by taking a cruise aboard our sparkling new Royal Caribbean® MCU where 22 luxury movie theaters will screen all 22 “Avengers” movies 24 hours a day in alternating formats ranging from IMAX to 3-D to Smell-O-Vision!

4. Swimming Pool

The swim-up bar, as Punch tells us, began in 1950s Las Vegas with the Sands first creating floating blackjack and craps tables and then the Tropicana building swim-up blackjack tables which naturally extended to bars. These swim-up bars, it turns out, precluded modern places like XS in Encore, a whole damn swim club, named, apparently, the hottest nightclub in the world by Condé Nast. Naturally a byproduct of the swim entertainment industry, it seems to me, should be floating movie theaters. You could watch the latest blockbuster from the comfort of floating chairs and mattresses with tiki drinks served to you by the swimming concession staff. Private cabana rooms can be purchased at an upgraded price for just you and your friends. Coral Cove is a superpool with slides, fountains and fun-filled interactive aqua entertainment where families can take their kids to simultaneously screen the latest box office hit.

5. Spa

Movies themselves might provide spiritual nourishment but what if you’re simultaneously on the prowl for some bodily rejuvenation too? Why then you’ll want to check out our Cinemark Spa & Cineplex, the next level in movie-watching luxury, where filmgoers willing to shell out can enjoy a new release paired with an appropriate spa treatment. Watch “Rambo: Last Blood” while getting a thermal mud wrap, see “The Rise of Skywalker” from inside a salt stone sauna, or allow the new Olivier Assayas film to play tricks on your mind while you detoxify your body with a Mahoosuc Coffee Scrub. Valentine’s Day and Date Night packages include a massage for two paired with the newest generic rom com. In the special Serenity Suite complete with aromatherapy you don’t even have to watch the movie at all.

No comments: