December 16, 2014
Would I Buy a MoviePass?
Posted by Christine Hurt

So, readers here know that I go to the movies a lot.  A lot.  I really like movies, and movies are expensive.  Particularly the way we go to the movies (like they are going to stop making popcorn any second).  One of the great things about Utah County is that there is a $1 theater and a $3.50 theater (with $1 popcorn) that show movies the week they leave the other theaters, and sometimes before.  But now, AMC and MoviePass are offering a monthly subscription service in Boston and Denver that allow moviegoers to see up to one movie a day for a flat fee ($35 standard format/$45 any format).  If the average AMC ticket price is $9, then you would need to see about one movie a month to break even.

A few thoughts.  First, there are times of the year (February comes to mind) where there aren't any movies to go see at all.  We see mostly family movies, and there really aren't enough of those to eke out a weekly outing all year.  So, if I was paying $35 in February to see one animated sequal, I'd be a little disappointed.  I might make up for it during the summer and the pre-Oscar season, but it would be close.  Second, I would only do it if I were in a city where AMC had enough screens to show a lot of movies:  indies, documentaries, etc.  There really aren't enough mainstream movies that I would want to see 60 new releases a year. (Alas, there isn't an AMC here.)

But, if I did have such a card to a local theater, then I'm sure I would buy a lot of concessions (as if I didn't already).  Even though it is irrational, I would feel like my admission was "free," and I could use more cash for extras.  (Would you like some raisinets with that popcorn?)

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