I can't even begin to define how much I love movies. They are such an inner part of my core being. Not to mention the fact that I went to film school to learn how to make movies. And when I'm not blogging or working my regular job I try to watch any movie I can get my hands on. So I feel like there is enough evidence to show what movies mean to me. That's why it pains me to say this but the movies are being ruined by the studios.
This isn't one of those angry rants about how Hollywood doesn't produce any original works just carbon copy remakes. I'll save that for another blog down the road. No, what I want to talk about is how Hollywood is ruining the movie going experience. Half the reason we go see movies in the theaters is to be able to lose yourself in the world for a couple of hours. I would look forward to going with my mom ( a single mother) and getting a big bag of popcorn and a nice large drink. It was a big deal. I would wait for a slow moment during the movie to rush out and get the popcorn and drink refilled and run to the bathroom and make sure to be back in time for the good part. We go to the theater to sit with a date and use the excuse of total darkness and a scary movie on the screen to bring our bodies closer together. As someone who through my teen years and my twenties couldn't afford the best in technology for my living room so going to the movies was an at the very least a visual experience. Except in the same amount of time Hollywood has done everything to ruin these memories.
I don't want this to become one of those it was better in my day articles. I just want to look at what Hollywood has done in the last five years or so for the moviegoer and the theater owner and see if everything they have done is for the best. Let's talk about 3D for a second. Hollywood last year became a glutton for 3D. If they could put 3D at the end of title the movie got a green light. We can thank Avatar and the tremendous amount of money it made for this. Whether you think Avatar is a good or bad movie doesn't matter. Hollywood and studios see green that's it. So they began releasing every movie in 3D that they could. Except not every movie is meant to be seen this way. What they saw was a chance to charge almost twenty bucks for a ticket. Half these movies weren't even supposed to be made in 3D. This was done after the release. That's like having someone build a car and then asking them if it can fly. So with a flooding of the market people's appetite for 3D began to wane. This happened to coincide with the fact that all these theater owners were forced to put expensive new 3D screen in. Most of them having to take out loans just to keep up with the market. Except now audiences don't even care and they are left holding a expensive loan.
As if this wasn't enough for theater owners to take Hollywood still had a few more ideas to throw at them. Over the last five years the window between a theatrical run in a movie theater and when that movie would come out in the home video market has dwindled. It used to be that there would be a good six months between when that movie stopped playing in theater to when you could buy it on DVD. This meant people just might get off there butts and go see a movie in the theater. This also meant they might go see it twice if they liked the movie since it might be a while before they would get to see it again. In five years it's gone from six months to hundred and twenty days to ninety days to now as of writing this some major studios are trying to close that window to sixty-nine days.
Yes, the studios would rather have you stay home and order that movie for thirty dollars and be able to watch as many times as you want in forty-eight hours. So even after the theater owners took out loans major studio would still rather you stay and home and watch a movie then go out and help a theater. Even though the steep price of thirty dollars might make you stay away for a while. It won't take long for Hollywood to drop that price to the cost of an average ticket. And heck why would you go see a movie in a theater when you can make your own popcorn, and watch the film on a TV made by one of those major companies. Whatever keeps us in our house and away from each other.
The whole point of a theater is to have an experience. Go on a date, have a memory, see something truly great or awful up there. Have an opinion, meet someone, talk about it after with friends, or maybe just get out of your house for a couple of hours. This is a subject I plan to come back to. But I mostly want to get the word out that the best you can do for movies is to go and see them. We can have a debate about the merits of Blu-Ray and downloading movies, and whether it's good for independent cinema. Hollywood understands green so vote with your wallet. And show them what you really care about.