Originally Posted by crab
Yep, a lot of things conspire against watching out. You start out with a wait in line. You pay a ridiculously high price to get in and once you're in you have to pay for the ridiculously overpriced concessions. Then there is that two percent of people that tend to ruin things. In a theater with fifty people you have a good shot at being annoyed at some point by someone. Normally its something minor that doesn't get in the way of your good time but sometimes it can taint the experience pretty hard. All to watch a movie where the picture quality may end up being great or really poor and with sound quality that almost never matches up to what I have at home.
Then you start doing your cost/benefit analysis. I can BUY the movie for less than it costs me to view it one time at the theater. Even a new 3D release. I can watch this purchased movie at my convenience. I will not step in something sticky as I make my way to my nice comfy chair. I will be snacking on exactly what I wanted and washing it down with a beverage of my choosing, neither the food or beverage will be ridiculously overpriced. At no point during the entire show will a baby cry or a phone ring or anything else intrude upon the experience.
So, Whats the point of theater anymore? Good question. For me home theater and simple economics have made them a poor choice for my entertainment dollar.
It sounds like the theaters in your area suck.
When I go to the theater, most of those things are not issues.
I buy my tickets online, most of the time I just use the app on my phone. This also allows me to pick my seats (seating is assigned) and view which seats are taken or open. There is no waiting in line for me. In fact, I'm almost always running late and end up rushing to get in my seat before the start of the previews. I haven't waited in line for a ticket or to get inside for about 13 years (since the original release of Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace). And that was in a different state, not at my current local theater (which was not even built back then). That was also long before you could buy tickets online or on your phone. It just wouldn't happen to me today.
At my local theater they don't even allow texting. They have a few big "announcements" telling everyone to turn their phones off or they will be kicked out during the previews. You don't have to worry about anybody's phone ringing. I've never seen it happen at my local theater.
The audio and video completely blow away anything you'll find in a home theater. Film has a much higher resolution than any TV, projection unit, or computer monitor. You simply aren't going to match that at home unless you're buying film. It's also smoother than the 24p bluray standard. Not to mention the huge screen that engulfs you into the movie. So if it doesn't always look better in your theater of choice, you need to find a different theater.
Same thing with the sound. I don't know how many speakers they have at my local theater but it's at least 20 or 30 (and possibly more). Nobody has that type of setup at home. If your local theater doesn't best your home surround sound, you are going to the wrong theater. I have a 7.1 surround setup at home and it's not even close to comparing to my local theater. The room I have mine in is rectangular is shape, which is good. But it's not the same as a theater that was built for this purpose. The theater has the ideal shape, really high ceilings, and acoustic walls. Combine that with about 20 or 30 speaker surround sound, and my 7.1 surround at home just can't compete with that.
I agree with you on the concessions though. Way too expensive. A drink, popcorn, and candy is like $10. It's highway robbery.
I'd suggest you find an Imax theater and try it out. If your home theater is actually putting out better audio and video than an Imax theater, then you must have a home theater made of components not available to average residential consumers.