The Cost of Cinema

Right. I warn you. I’m going to have a rant. Not about a film, but the cinema.

I have a growing dislike of my local Odeon cinema as it is. The audience seems to think it’s perfectly fine to chomp, crunch and talk all the way through a film I’ve paid good money to see, whereas the clientele of my local arthouse cinema quietly nibble away on cake before the start and go deadly quiet once the curtain moves back.

However, it’s unusual for the two cinemas to be showing the same film, but in this case, Hanna was on at both, but my friend who seems to be able to ignore the people around him, talked me into the Odeon. The place was empty, with only 8 people in the place, so I was quietly happy, until we ended up paying £30 between us for 2 tickets (not even premier seats) and some snacks/drinks. At the same time, the arthouse cinema tickets would have been £3.50/£5.50 plus the chance to buy a couple of beers. This would have cost more like £16 between us. Needless to say, we later discovered the arthouse cinema was sold out that evening.

This is good news for my little cinema, but at the same time, the Odeon was clearly pricing itself out of the market. There were no teenage couples because youngsters on a date will most certainly not be able to afford it. It worries me that mainstream cinemas will start closing because they have become greedy and the public will vote with its feet and wait for the DVD as they did back when videos first came out. And of course, this has a knock-on effect on film-making in general, if funds are not forthcoming from ticket sales, then some of those rather nice independent films can’t afford to be made. This, I’m sure you will all agree, is not a good situation for the film industry to be in.

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