We miss the cinema experience! Before the pandemic, prior to the advent of streaming, preceding the endless parade of superhero movies, in the days when a movie ticket was “only” $8.97, moviegoers really enjoyed watching films on the silver screen… even if that meant shelling out ridiculous amounts for ridiculously sized bags of buttered popcorn. There were other drawbacks, of course, but none related to the ticket price or the movie being shown.

The problems usually began as soon as the lights dimmed and the promos started. The theaters lit up with cell phones as movie-goers texted friends or caught up on emails before the start of the film. This was followed up by late arrivals searching for enough seats for their entire party to sit together, often forcing whole rows of people to stand up in sync and do the wave. This process was regularly repeated if someone had to use the bathroom.

Then there were those who munched their popcorn or slurped their colas loudly during the quietest periods of the film. Naturally, noses had to be loudly blown. And many considered themselves lucky if said nose-clearing wasn’t accompanied by sneezing or coughing. Audience members were also fortunate if they weren’t seated alongside fidgety folks who spent entire films turning and twisting in their chairs, causing entire rows to vibrate and squeak, or behind tall people or those who refused to doff their fedoras inside the theater. But most annoying of all were those who spent entire movies shushing their fellow movie-goers. Ushers could add many more related stories to the above list, but let’s stick to the main features…

After such experiences, watching films at home seemed a huge relief. It didn’t turn people against watching movies. But unfortunately it just pushed them to go to video stores first and to the streamers later.

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