Movies are a great way to relax and escape from reality. Catching a good flick – whether it’s on Red Box or at the theater – is a favorite date night activity for Lloyd and me. We even have an unspoken movie rating system that helps us decide how much cash to spend on a movie:
WEEKEND TICKETS AT THE THEATER (AKA I’m obsessed.)
Weekend tickets go for full price, which is around $10 in Kansas City. I’ll pay full price for a movie maybe 3-5 times a year. There are only two instances where I’m willing to pay the inflated $10 for 120 minutes of entertainment:
- It turns into an event. For example, girl’s night out. There are certain girly movies that my girlfriends and I will plan ahead to see as a group many months in advance. We’ll do the dinner and drinks thang beforehand and then hit up the movie. Over the last year, I’ve had three girl’s movie nights. One was for the 2nd Sex and The City movie and the others were for the 2nd and 3rd Twilight installments. Yes, it’s silly, and, yes, the movies are awful; but, we love it, we look forward to it, and we have SO much fun. That’s more than worth the ten bucks in my opinion.
- I’ve been anxiously awaiting this movie since the first trailer. The Social Network movie is the perfect example. I’ve been eagerly awaiting that movie since I first saw the preview before Inception (which also deserves my nod of approval). I’m not technically obsessed with Facebook, but the story of its creation and world-domination is so compelling. And in case you haven’t noticed, social media is all the rage these days, so I couldn’t wait to see the movie about the Website that practically inspired the movement. Plus, the trailer with the cover of Radiohead’s Creep totally won me over. (P.S. It was a really great movie. Go see it.)
WEEKDAY TICKETS AT THE THEATER (AKA Okay, I’m intrigued.)
Weekday prices at the movie theater are perfect for us sometimes-frugal folk. At almost half the cost of a regular ticket – $6 in KC – you can’t beat the price!
The category is reserved for those movies that look somewhat interesting to me in the preview, but just don’t leave me wanting more, scrolling desperately through Internet searches like a junkie frantic for one more taste of my screenplay of choice (if they have that effect, the get bumped to the aforementioned category).
For instance, the ads and trailers for Inception really had me intrigued. But I was mostly so confused by them that I never became hooked. I just filed it away in that “want to see, but don’t have to see” movie folder in my mind for some future lazy weekday when Lloyd and I didn’t have much going on. And it worked out great because the movie was amazing and I was only out $6.00 … unless the theater totally inceptioned that price into my dreams… I guess we’ll never know…
RED BOX RENTALS (AKA I heard it was okay.)
This lowly category has a crummy job: clean-up and maintenance of my movie-watching to-do list. Here are some common Red Box Rental situations:
- Movies that I wanted to see during the weekday, but never got around to.
- Movies that Lloyd wants to see that I really don’t want to see (Hot Tub Time Machine, anyone?).
- Movies that I want to see that Lloyd doesn’t want to see.
- Movies that we are forced to see because we are bored and have no other plans (which is the only reason I ever saw Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist. I’ll never get those 2 hours back.).
I love Red Box. LOVE it. One dollar for the two of us to see a movie? Yes, please! The only time it backfires is in situations like the Nick and Norah debacle mentioned above. Other than that, it usually proves to be a financial and entertainment win.
MOVIES ON T.V. (AKA I’m not spending money on that.)
Finally, we have the movies on TV category: Movies I was never willing to pay money for or I had no real interest in, but I’ll watch on TV if I’ve got nothing else going on.
The funny thing here is that these movies sometimes turn out to be some of my favorites. When the whole Bridget Jones phenomenon was going down, I had absolutely no desire to see the series. But, lo and behold, I caught the first installment on TV recently and I actually really liked it!
Truth be told, this category is such a budget-saver. There are way too many flicks to choose from and I can’t spend money on every single one I want to see. Eventually, I can just catch them on TV. And I’ll be about ten bucks richer.
YOUR MOVIE RATING SYSTEM
I’m sure that most people have some sort of internal movie ranking system. With the number of movies vying for our attention these days we have to create some sort of system to figure out how much we’re willing to pony up for a flick – or if we’re willing to pay at all.
So what’s your movie ranking system? Have you sworn off full-price theater tickets for life? Or do you see every movie at the theater no matter what?