Honesty Time

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Movie Theater Reviews

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As previously stated in a few of my posts, I currently work as an Assistant Manager in a movie theater.  So, needless to say, I would like to think that I understand certain standards that are set for each establishment and that said standards should be met.  Trust me when I say, I do not have that high of standards.  The theater I work at is not at all in the best shape, but at least we try.  Yes, our seats are dirty, the walls are in dire need of a fresh coat of paint, the rug needs to be either fixed or replaced, we are not an IMAX, the tiles are falling off of the walls in certain areas, etc.  However, we all as employees and managers, work to make this a better place.  Our GM is constantly trying to get the necessary repairs fixed in a timely manner.  Most of our issues are the result of our corporate offices just not complying or understanding our needs and just that, “needs” and not “wants.”  My boyfriend, who I should mention is assistant general manager at the theater I work at, and I went to two different theaters to watch Interstellar for the IMAX and these are my reviews.  I won’t mention the names of the theaters.
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Theater 1
Distance
About 45 minutes.
Visited: 
11/7/14 at around 10:30 pm for the opening night of Interstellar in IMAX. This was my first IMAX movie so I was pretty excited!
CON 1:
 We both walked up to the box office, which was located off to the right hand side of the entrance, and were surprised with what we were greeted with or should I say not greeted with. The box office attendant did not even look at us as he called us up and rudely told us to go to Guest Services since we had purchased our tickets online and had the confirmation number.  He definitely could have done a will call there, seeing as how all of the kiosks were either taken or out of order. Anyway, the Guest Service attendant, or GSA, was not in anyway better.  My boyfriend explained that we were directed there so we can claim our tickets, to which the GSA gave some kind of look that seemingly meant to say “Yeah, no shit. Give me the confirmation number already.”  He read the number to him and he handed our tickets to him with not so much as a word.  Real professional and approachable.  The only nice employee there was the concessionist, who told us to “enjoy our movie (night)”

CON 2:
We finally went into our theater with absolutely no direction from the staff and had found our seats.  I looked over toward the walls where the speakers are usually located and was appalled by what I saw.  There was dust so thick on top of the speakers that they were forming little dust mountains.  Disgusting.  One word.  DUST!
PROS:
1. A lot of security.  They had a police office in the front and 2 security guards in the IMAX theater. It made me feel safe knowing that they were there walking the theaters.
2. Designated seats.  This was awesome because of the fact that you did not need to worry about where you were sitting or where the seats were in relation to the screen.  We picked them and knew exactly where we were sitting.  This was especially awesome because it was sold out.  Not a seat to be had.
3. The screen was pretty nice.  It was formatted to IMAX a bit later I am assuming because the screen was not nearly as big as I had pictured it was going to be, but the picture quality was incredible.
Although there is one more pro than con, the cons win out for me in this case.  I understand fully that some customers are assholes and can really damper the mood, making work miserable, never ending, and just shitty overall.  However, when a customer approaches you and is clearly trying to be nice to you, don’t repay that with an attitude.  It leaves a sour taste in the customer’s mouth and just gives a person an overall bad experience.  You don’t want to be remembered as the theater with terrible employees with piss-poor attitudes.
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Theater 2: 
 
Distance
About 1 hour
 
Visited
11/14/14 for a showing of Interstellar in 70mm IMAX
 
CON 1:
You have to pay for parking.  Granted it was cheap enough ($4.00 for 4 hours). But, the companies know that people are going to come to the movies, usually in some type of vehicle, and making people park to see a movie is just a little unfair, especially with the movies being as expensive as they are today.  IMAX tickets are not cheap, averaging about $19.00 a ticket and concession items are even more expensive.  Can you not rip us off by forcing to pay before even stepping foot into your establishment. Come on now.
 
CON 2:
The bathrooms.  Honestly, I think I would have rather used a gas station bathroom.  They.  Were.  GROSS.  I went to 2 separate bathrooms thinking one would be better than the first.  It was an hour drive so I needed to go when I got there and then of course, after sitting through a 3 hour movie in addition to an hour ride home, I needed to go before I left.  One bathroom was slightly better than the other, but by no means is this saying much. There was gross stuff left in nearly every toilet, water and toilet paper all over the floor, and just a bad odor coming from the bathrooms as soon as you went in. If it wasn’t so cold out, I probably would have been better off going outside.  A simple bathroom check is a necessary.
CON 3:
I cannot tell you the last time I saw a movie on film. I was excited, especially because I am more of a traditional artist who prefers the pencil over the computer and the dark room over photoshop.  I loved working with my negatives.  I took pride in developing my film, and my prints.  The point I am trying to make is I took better care of my negatives, than this theater took care of what I can only imagine being an extremely expensive film reel.  There was dust and dirt all over it.  How can you tell?  Well, when your negatives are dirty it magnifies onto your developed and printed photograph.  I can only imagine it is the same with the movie.  There were dust particles, dust and, what looked like hair projected onto the screen and all over the faces of the actors, even making an appearance in some of the space scenes.  It just seemed like negligence on teh projectionists part.  Take care of the film.  I want my movie to look as great as possible and not have huge chunks of crap all over Matthew McConaughey’s face.
 
PROS
The staff was actually really pleasant.  We were greeted right at the door and pointed in the direction of the theater.
There was a manager and a security guard on the floor.  The manager also looked pleasant, and was keeping an eye on the door and what seemed like concession/arcade.
The screen was HUGE! It was actually floor to ceiling and from wall to wall.  It was incredible.  The screen was something I had pictured when I thought of IMAX.  I was actually a little blown away by the size of the screen in front of me.
Aside from the dust issue, the picture looked incredible on that huge screen.  For film, it was unbelievably clear, but at the same time you can still tell it was film.  This was something I thoroughly enjoyed.
Conclusion:

There you have it.  When going to another movie theater, something I also rarely do, it is not as if I am going to nitpick things.  These are just things I notice after working at a theater for so many years. A lot of it is due to simple negligence. Most of the issues can be taken care of quite simply.  Dust, bathroom check, greet customers the way you would like to be greeted when going out, simple tasks could lead to giving customers a much better overall experience.

P.S. This movie was absolutely incredible in every way, shape, and form.  It was visually stunning, often taking my breath away, it makes you laugh, and it makes you cry.  This movie has it all.  I highly recommend it.  I mean clearly, I saw it twice.  I needed to see it twice.  Talking about it makes me want to go see it again.

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Author: AmandaMarie

I am a 2011 graduate of Drew University with a Bachelor's Degree in Art History with a minor in Art. I have taken wide-range of art courses, which include 2D design, 3D design, Drawing, Ceramic Sculpture, Photography (both black and white and digital), Computer Graphics, and printmaking (intaglio). I have had prior black and white photography experience from three years of classes in high school as well. I hope that this blog will be a way for me to showcase my work to various people and future clients.

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