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Kruiser's (Almost) Daily Distraction: What's a Movie Theater?

(Kruiser’s Permanote Description: This column is intended to be a lighthearted, short-form way to frequently connect with our cherished VIP readers. Sometimes it will be serious. Sometimes it will be fun. Sometimes it will be a cornucopia of intellectual curiosities and fascinations. OK, maybe not so much the last one. Anyway, as this is a departure for me, I’m including this explanation at the top of each post for a while. Also, non-subscribers can see the first couple of paragraphs so I am in desperate need of filler until we get to the private stuff (subscribe here). Please remember that there is a standing invitation to ask me anything in the comments. Once a week, I’ll answer.)

In each of my last couple of media appearances, I was asked when I thought life in America was going to “get back to normal.” We all had a different idea of what that meant when all of this pandemic nightmare stuff began last year. Now I’m not so sure what normal even is.

One of the things I keep pondering is the future of entertainment in the post-pandemic world, especially live entertainment.

While recording a Kruiser Kabana podcast episode with actor Nick Searcy that will be posted later in the week, I was discussing the future of the movie industry not only as it related to production, but consumption as well.

I’ve been wondering if the theater business will ever be like it used to be. No doubt there are plenty of people who love the idea of going to see a movie in the theater and not have many people there because of social distance capacity mandates. I’m not gonna lie: I’d love to be in a theater with almost nobody else in it.

via GIPHY

That’s not a sustainable business model for the theaters, however.

Home entertainment gets cheaper every year. You can buy a television for $400 now that would have cost over a grand six or seven years ago. I’ve been wondering if the future of the movie business will cater to people who are consuming the films in their homes. I know that’s a consideration already, but the theaters are still the focus. I’m talking about almost exclusively catering to at-home consumption.

I’m also wondering if that might lead to better movies, rather than endless reboots of superhero franchises. Yeah, I’m a fan of the Marvel Cinematic Universe but I wouldn’t mind a few more quirky but kickass comedies being made.

What do you think, dear readers? Would you rather just beef up your home entertainment and never go to a theater again? Were you doing that even before the bat flu?

I have to be honest, I’ve enjoyed going to see movies in theaters a lot more since the theaters started serving beer. If I reconfigure my home entertainment system it’s going to need something on tap.

Don’t forget, ask me anything. I don’t think you all appreciate the opportunity I’m giving you here to participate in the madness.

I’ll leave you with a trailer for a flick I know I’d like to see on a big screen, although I’m not ruling out having that big screen in my house.

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PJ Media Senior Columnist and Associate Editor Stephen Kruiser is the author ofDon’t Let the Hippies ShowerandStraight Outta Feelings: Political Zen in the Age of Outrage,” both of which address serious subjects in a humorous way. Monday through Friday he edits PJ Media’s “Morning Briefing.” His columns appear twice a week.