My friend just texted me about MoviePass lowering their monthly subscription rate to an astonishingly low $6.95. He is profoundly astounded at my disinterest in doing any such thing. This is not the first time we’ve had this conversation.
In case you haven’t heard of it, MoviePass is a subscription service which enables you to attend one movie per day in a theater for a month, for hardly any money at all. A single movie ticket is somewhere around $12, so paying half that price to see 30 movies is inarguably an amazing deal. So why am I not signing up? And why are tens of thousands of people signing up for what is to many people apparently an irresistible offer?
Sure, a regular movie ticket is absurdly overpriced, and unless you are willing to smuggle in your own food and drinks, the price gauging at the concession stand is confiscatory and without lube. But the outrageous prices are not the actual reason I have no interest in going to a movie theater. The truth is you could give me a complementary membership to MoviePass for a year and I wouldn’t take it. What I need is either a guarantee that I will be the only one in the theater, or assurances that my fellow movie-goers will have to take and pass a class on how to conduct themselves in public in general, in a movie theater in specific. Here’s a rather simple syllabus for the class:
1) Shut the fuck up.
2) Turn your phone completely off: no sound, no illumination.
These are not difficult lessons, but apparently most of the assholes that I find at the theater were raised by other assholes, or they missed “shut the fuck up” day in school. The last dozen or so times I’ve gone to the movies, I’ve only been reminded of why doing so is such an incredibly bad idea. The problem MoviePass needs to address if it is truly interested in getting people back into theaters (which they’ve already said that they are not) is the affordability and accessibility of quality home theater systems, and trying to convince people like me that there is even one compelling reason for me to put on clothes, leave the house, deal with traffic composed of people who cannot drive, park in a lot filled by people who cannot park, stand in line for overpriced food and drink, sit in a huge room with a bunch of ill-mannered assholes with zero self-awareness as they proceed to talk over the soundtrack and wave their stupidly illuminated phones around.
N.P.: “If All Is Lost” – Eric McFadden