MoviePass

Discuss films of the 21st century including current cinema, current filmmakers, and film festivals.
Post Reply
Message
Author
User avatar
mfunk9786
Under Chris' Protection
Joined: Fri May 16, 2008 4:43 pm
Location: Philadelphia, PA

Re: MoviePass

#226 Post by mfunk9786 » Fri Apr 20, 2018 12:06 pm

I think I'd stay on board at 4 movies per month provided it stayed at $7 per month. That's what, $50 of value for $7? It's a no-brainer, I don't think I've used it 4 times in one month since I got it, and I still feel like I'm getting tremendous value from it. I could see it being an occasional annoyance... but for most users it seems like the Goldilocks zone.

Seems like we're headed toward a two or three-tiered membership type of situation depending on how much you intend to use it, and as long as the unlimited tier isn't exorbitantly expensive, it seems like it should still satiate those who anticipate seeing a dozen movies a month or whatever.

User avatar
Brian C
Joined: Wed Sep 16, 2009 11:58 am
Location: Chicago, IL

Re: MoviePass

#227 Post by Brian C » Fri Apr 20, 2018 12:18 pm

They did say on a Facebook comment I saw that the 4 movie thing was a limited time promo with iHeartRadio and that the unlimited option would be back in the future.

User avatar
DarkImbecile
LightGenius
Joined: Mon Dec 09, 2013 6:24 pm
Location: Albuquerque, NM

Re: MoviePass

#228 Post by DarkImbecile » Mon Apr 23, 2018 12:17 pm

THR has details on the first major poll of MoviePass subscribers, who on average see six more movies a month than nonsubscribers while spending just as much on concessions per visit; 60% of subscribers feel the service is probably unsustainable.

Deadline reports on discussions out of CinemaCon of studios and exhibitors joining forces to create their own version of MoviePass to cut out the interloper; the article frames this strategy as a substitute for the Premium VOD service the studios floated last year, which I think even MoviePass' critics would agree would have been far more detrimental to the theater-going experience.

User avatar
Ribs
Joined: Fri Jun 13, 2014 1:14 pm

Re: MoviePass

#229 Post by Ribs » Mon Apr 23, 2018 12:49 pm

I also think it would be more detrimental to get one of my legs cut off then one of my arms but see no reason I can't keep both

User avatar
mfunk9786
Under Chris' Protection
Joined: Fri May 16, 2008 4:43 pm
Location: Philadelphia, PA

Re: MoviePass

#230 Post by mfunk9786 » Mon Apr 23, 2018 12:54 pm

I now think of Ribs every time I use MoviePass and it makes it at least twice as satisfying

User avatar
hearthesilence
Joined: Fri Mar 04, 2005 4:22 am
Location: NYC

Re: MoviePass

#231 Post by hearthesilence » Mon Apr 23, 2018 12:58 pm

Jesus, about time. There's been a recurring pattern of media giants doing too little too late and giving away the keys to the kingdom to someone else (like the record labels and Spotify) when they have the resources to develop and offer the same service. Had the record labels had more foresight, they could've developed something like their own version of Spotify - instead, they now have a third-party taking the lion's share of the money, and to make up for that (i.e. to keep as much as possible of what's left for themselves) they made a deal that screwed over the recording artists and songwriters. If exhibitors and the studios see potential trouble down the road, they ought to beat MoviePass at their own game now instead of waiting until it's too late.
Last edited by hearthesilence on Mon Apr 23, 2018 1:03 pm, edited 3 times in total.

User avatar
Luke M
Joined: Thu Jul 12, 2007 9:21 pm

Re: MoviePass

#232 Post by Luke M » Mon Apr 23, 2018 1:00 pm

DarkImbecile wrote:THR has details on the first major poll of MoviePass subscribers, who on average see six more movies a month than nonsubscribers while spending just as much on concessions per visit; 60% of subscribers feel the service is probably unsustainable.

Deadline reports on discussions out of CinemaCon of studios and exhibitors joining forces to create their own version of MoviePass to cut out the interloper; the article frames this strategy as a substitute for the Premium VOD service the studios floated last year, which I think even MoviePass' critics would agree would have been far more detrimental to the theater-going experience.
MoviePass subscribers are themselves dubious: 60 percent think it's too good to be true, including 37 percent who strongly believe such is the case.
"Too good to be true" ≠ probably unsustainable
Another key finding: MoviePass customers are far less concerned about a movie's Rotten Tomatoes score, with 35 percent saying they would be willing to ignore a bad rating.
This should be a bigger thing.

Overall, the results of the poll are overwhelmingly positive.

User avatar
DarkImbecile
LightGenius
Joined: Mon Dec 09, 2013 6:24 pm
Location: Albuquerque, NM

Re: MoviePass

#233 Post by DarkImbecile » Mon Apr 23, 2018 1:10 pm

I still fail to see how this concept of applying a subscription model to movie attendance ends up being bad for exhibitors. US theater attendance has been declining anyway (average tickets sold annually from 2013-2017:1.296 billion; 2003-2007: 1.446 billion); if there are 2 million subscribers seeing six extra movies a month at an average ticket price of $9 and spending an average of $15 on concessions per visit, we're talking roughly $288 million a month flowing into exhibitors that wouldn't have otherwise. And again, even if some combination of profit-sharing and data mining still leaves MoviePass unsustainable, establishing a habit of more regular moviegoing (especially among the nearly half of subscribers between 30-44 with more disposable income) is probably a long-term victory for theaters.

User avatar
Ribs
Joined: Fri Jun 13, 2014 1:14 pm

Re: MoviePass

#234 Post by Ribs » Mon Apr 23, 2018 1:46 pm

I do really question the economics of a theater doing it itself - the reason why theaters are letting MoviePass grow so much is it's, at this stage, just money in pocket. But if a theater is giving away its own tickets then it becomes lost revenue. I think the problem is that, should AMC expand Stubs to include some type of MoviePass deal, it would probably *need* to be more expensive then MoviePass because AMC can't afford to play it as riskily as they have, but people would feel cheated that it's more money for just one theater. It's a little like how I imagine the future of TV will be where people are going to be so upset at paying for individual channels via apps or whatever which they apparently wanted for so long because they individually cost too much money even though they were getting them cheaper because of getting them in bulk. It'd be interesting if AMC and Regal combined to offer some effective MoviePass killer, but they probably would have to figure out some extra incentive that would make people not feel cheated.

I'm still furious that this entire discussion is happening, because it's basically solidified that the entire movie industry is on the brink that the most minor startup can get a cash infusion and throw the industry into chaos with a price cut.

User avatar
hearthesilence
Joined: Fri Mar 04, 2005 4:22 am
Location: NYC

Re: MoviePass

#235 Post by hearthesilence » Mon Apr 23, 2018 1:51 pm

DarkImbecile, as I read those numbers you posted, I started to think about old movie palaces and the large number of seats they used to sell. I saw a show at Kings Theater in Brooklyn recently, and I was astounded by the size of the venue - for a concert it looked enormous but it's even more stunning when you remember that the theater was built primarily for movie screenings. I'm not well-versed in the economic history of Hollywood, but given the larger attendance movies had back in the day, weren't ticket prices proportionately lower as well?

It would be amazing if MoviePass (or rather the model that comes out of it) re-shaped movie attendance, allowing for larger turnouts but also lower ticket costs that would be more than acceptable given the increased attendance - after all, attendance for any film does thin out dramatically after opening weekend. It would be great if a long-time historical trend was reversed, with theaters filling out later in any film's run rather than having so much riding on the first few days.

User avatar
Ribs
Joined: Fri Jun 13, 2014 1:14 pm

Re: MoviePass

#236 Post by Ribs » Mon Apr 23, 2018 1:58 pm

Movie palaces actually stopped being such a thing due to a rule that any theater being restored or built after 1990 had to have wheelchair access in every row if they had more than 300 seats. Which is still true! (Most new theaters, with plus seating, have, like, 90 seats at the most, regardless). I cannot fathom what it's like at TIFF or something where they play movies in sold-out 1200 seat theaters (I may have imagined that this happens?).

I actually think this year's box office returns have been better than average for holds past opening weekend: The Greatest Showman has the best multiplier of all time, I think, for a movie with wide release? It got something like 18x its opening weekend gross. Jumanji 2 became Columbia's highest grossing movie ever. Black Panther only dropped like 40% each weekend, which is a lot better than the 55-60% most other bigger movies usually get. Not really enough to identify a trend, but I've found a lot of the news very encouraging and stubbornly am refusing to accept any role MoviePass could play in that.

User avatar
mfunk9786
Under Chris' Protection
Joined: Fri May 16, 2008 4:43 pm
Location: Philadelphia, PA

Re: MoviePass

#237 Post by mfunk9786 » Mon Apr 23, 2018 2:18 pm

Yeah, must be a huge coincidence that everyone's going to see these movies over and over again

User avatar
jindianajonz
Jindiana Jonz Abrams
Joined: Wed Oct 12, 2011 8:11 pm

Re: MoviePass

#238 Post by jindianajonz » Mon Apr 23, 2018 2:22 pm

Ribs wrote:I do really question the economics of a theater doing it itself - the reason why theaters are letting MoviePass grow so much is it's, at this stage, just money in pocket. But if a theater is giving away its own tickets then it becomes lost revenue.
Is it really, though? If MoviePass customers are spending $15 on concessions for a $9 ticket, the theater could probably find a way to make the math work out.

My question is how theaters establish ticket prices to begin with. Is it just a flat per person rate that they give the studios, regardless of location? If so, you'd think it would be in everybody's interest to negotiated flexible rates that incentivizes theaters to draw in bigger audiences- i.e. they owe less per person when the theater draws in bigger crowds. Such a pricing scheme could make a theater run version of MoviePass feasible.

User avatar
DarkImbecile
LightGenius
Joined: Mon Dec 09, 2013 6:24 pm
Location: Albuquerque, NM

Re: MoviePass

#239 Post by DarkImbecile » Mon Apr 23, 2018 2:27 pm

Ribs wrote:I do really question the economics of a theater doing it itself - the reason why theaters are letting MoviePass grow so much is it's, at this stage, just money in pocket. But if a theater is giving away its own tickets then it becomes lost revenue. I think the problem is that, should AMC expand Stubs to include some type of MoviePass deal, it would probably *need* to be more expensive then MoviePass because AMC can't afford to play it as riskily as they have, but people would feel cheated that it's more money for just one theater. It's a little like how I imagine the future of TV will be where people are going to be so upset at paying for individual channels via apps or whatever which they apparently wanted for so long because they individually cost too much money even though they were getting them cheaper because of getting them in bulk. It'd be interesting if AMC and Regal combined to offer some effective MoviePass killer, but they probably would have to figure out some extra incentive that would make people not feel cheated.
The Deadline article linked above indicates that the discussions would be a combined effort between the major chains and the studios sharing the loss on tickets distributed and the profits on increased concession revenue.
Ribs wrote:I'm still furious that this entire discussion is happening, because it's basically solidified that the entire movie industry is on the brink that the most minor startup can get a cash infusion and throw the industry into chaos with a price cut.
The studio system is doing just fine, especially as the proliferation of tax incentives at the state and international level over the last 20 years reduces their baseline cost for production and the cost of distribution has declined in the transition away from physical materials. It was the exhibitors that were taking the brunt of the decline in attendance, because while raising ticket prices (both base and premium options) can balance out fewer ticket sales, fewer people buy fewer concessions, which has always been where the theaters' popcorn was buttered, so to speak.
Ribs wrote:Movie palaces actually stopped being such a thing due to a rule that any theater being restored or built after 1990 had to have wheelchair access in every row if they had more than 300 seats. Which is still true! (Most new theaters, with plus seating, have, like, 90 seats at the most, regardless). I cannot fathom what it's like at TIFF or something where they play movies in sold-out 1200 seat theaters (I may have imagined that this happens?).
Yeah, the Americans with Disabilities Act played a role, as did realization that more screens and therefore more showtimes in the same building moved a larger number of people through the concession stands, which is where theaters make their margins. That multiplex innovation that killed movie palaces was actually pioneered by AMC and what made it the exhibition giant it is now.
Ribs wrote:The Greatest Showman has the best multiplier of all time, I think, for a movie with wide release? It got something like 18x its opening weekend gross.
I think Titanic still wins that with a 20x multiplier.

User avatar
Ribs
Joined: Fri Jun 13, 2014 1:14 pm

Re: MoviePass

#240 Post by Ribs » Mon Apr 23, 2018 2:34 pm

I do not actually believe that most people are spending that much money on concessions, particularly MoviePass users, regardless of what this survey says. I imagine the theaters would be able to make it work, but I'm not an economist, which is readily apparent in everything I've ever said on this and any other subject.

The movie industry *is* the exhibition industry. You don't have them, you don't have movies.

Not that anyone actually cares but it turns out that Titanic and Greatest Showman actually achieved roughly the same opening weekend multiplier of ~21.5x.

User avatar
willoneill
Joined: Wed Mar 18, 2009 10:10 am
Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

Re: MoviePass

#241 Post by willoneill » Mon Apr 23, 2018 5:28 pm

Ribs wrote:I cannot fathom what it's like at TIFF or something where they play movies in sold-out 1200 seat theaters (I may have imagined that this happens?).
You're not imagining. The Elgin (the theatre in The Shape of Water) seats about 1600, I think, and it's been virtually sold out every time I've seen a movie there at TIFF. That 300 seat rule must not be a thing in Canada, though. The IMAX screen at the Cineplex in my neighbourhood is well over 400 seats, was built in 1999, and it only has wheelchair spots in one row.

User avatar
Brian C
Joined: Wed Sep 16, 2009 11:58 am
Location: Chicago, IL

Re: MoviePass

#242 Post by Brian C » Mon Apr 23, 2018 6:34 pm

Ribs wrote:I'm still furious that this entire discussion is happening, because it's basically solidified that the entire movie industry is on the brink that the most minor startup can get a cash infusion and throw the industry into chaos with a price cut.
Is this even really MoviePass's fault, though? It sounds like your objection is that MoviePass has finally forced theater owners to pull their heads out of the sand.

The basic problem for the theater industry has been the same thing for a long time now - movie tickets are, on the whole, more expensive than most people are willing to pay, and for no good reason - costs of showing a movie have, on the whole, not really increased much over the years. The theaters have responded to this problem by somehow deciding to screw people over even worse, so now we're getting charged more simply for the privilege of seeing a movie in the biggest auditoriums (under borderline fraudulent "large format" marketing) or paying extra for a 3D screening that costs the theater approximately nothing extra to show. People generally hate this, and it was only a matter of time before this kind of bullshit on the industry's part got exposed for the blatant ripoff that it is.

I'll say again, if the industry collapses over this, theaters have no one but themselves to blame. They created this mess, not MoviePass.

User avatar
movielocke
Joined: Fri Jan 18, 2008 12:44 am

Re: MoviePass

#243 Post by movielocke » Thu Apr 26, 2018 3:39 am

Brian C wrote: The basic problem for the theater industry has been the same thing for a long time now - movie tickets are, on the whole, more expensive than most people are willing to pay, and for no good reason - costs of showing a movie have, on the whole, not really increased much over the years. The theaters have responded to this problem by somehow deciding to screw people over even worse
the constant raising of prices in tickets and concessions (and commensurate decline in both), is because that's what the business model requires to return growth to the shareholders. they have contempt for stable profits, it is only all consuming, ever expanding growth that they want. And that obligation to return growth and only growth to the share holders means that the exhibitors have a mandate and duty to keep raising prices.

User avatar
movielocke
Joined: Fri Jan 18, 2008 12:44 am

Re: MoviePass

#244 Post by movielocke » Thu Apr 26, 2018 3:52 am

DarkImbecile wrote:THR has details on the first major poll of MoviePass subscribers, who on average see six more movies a month than nonsubscribers while spending just as much on concessions per visit; 60% of subscribers feel the service is probably unsustainable.
I think you misread it, it is six more movies over six months, or an average of one more movie per month.
On average, subscribers have taken six more trips to the cinema in the past six months than nonsubscribers, while they are twice as likely to go on opening weekend. And nearly half of MoviePass customers say they are now willing to take a trip to the theater alone, while a hefty number (42 percent) happily go midweek.
the survey was also 41% NY, CA TX and FL, so not great demographic sampling. my family in the midwest hadn't even heard of movie pass when I asked last week, and they weren't particularly enticed by the four step headache of setting up an account per person, making separate purchases for every ticket holder, and checking in with an app in order to be allowed to make a purchase. And it's not surprising it wasn't very enticing, as tickets back there are $8.25 each, so in such markets, one must see two movies per month to "save" money, and in this case, that's merely $6 in savings for the month (or looked at another way, spending an extra 1.75 to see a movie you wouldn't have seen otherwise).

On the other hand, here in LA, I've seen two movies with movie pass and it saved me a total of $18 already, as the tickets were $14 each.

phantomforce
Joined: Sun Jul 28, 2013 2:01 am

Re: MoviePass

#245 Post by phantomforce » Thu Apr 26, 2018 6:34 am

Most AMC's in LA charge $9 for the smallest bag of popcorn. I used to never buy concessions and I have definitely bought some recently with the mentality that, well, my ticket money is going into these overpriced kernels that they pump like oxygen so why not? And i'm not the only one, most of the people i know that have movie pass now stock up on concessions for the same reason. Nearly everyone in LA is using movie pass now and It's been difficult to get decent seats for most popular films opening weekend unless you go early or mid week, and even then, crowds have been filling up shows like never before.

Take the Burbank AMC 16 for example, each standard auditorium seats around 300-400 people while the bigger stadiums (IMAX/DOLBY/Standard wide opening) will seat around 900. and there are 16 of these auditoriums and nearly every showing every day is sold out or almost at capacity opening weekend/nights or half full mid week (morning / afternoon / etc). The lines for concessions are out of control most of the time there, I usually see nearly 100 people at a time in line (of course the stubs people go up first which makes the standard wait longer), but you guys don't think the theaters are making a killing off selling popcorn and cups for the coca cola fountains? Of course they are! On top of that AMC at least hosts most of the test screenings for studios so I'm sure they are getting a much better deal for showing films over Pacific, Regal, and all the other indie people.

Anyway, none of this really matters in the long run.. Moviepass is in talks to buy out Landmark Theaters and they are already producing their own features like American Animals. My guess is that they will eventually continue the netflix path by producing and screening their own features at their own chain while striking deals with studios to exclusively screen features, at least on a limited run basis like Arclight does and then they can begin selling popcorn and soda while strong arming the studios in order to keep their subscription format going.

User avatar
Ribs
Joined: Fri Jun 13, 2014 1:14 pm

Re: MoviePass

#246 Post by Ribs » Thu Apr 26, 2018 7:11 am

I disagree with almost every single thing you say, but most importantly, there is no way whatsoever that MoviePass will be able to afford to buy Landmark Theaters and this has not been reported as likely whatsoever. They have yet to commit to producing a single film, merely semi-acquiring a few titles without it really being clear what their strategy for those are.

User avatar
tenia
Ask Me About My Bassoon
Joined: Wed Apr 29, 2009 11:13 am

Re: MoviePass

#247 Post by tenia » Thu Apr 26, 2018 8:25 am

movielocke wrote:as the tickets were $14 each.
I'll probably never get used to these prices. My local theater has tickets for usually $4 each. The more expensive theaters around would charge about $10, but most often, you're eligible to this or that discount that'll get the ticket down to $7.
phantomforce wrote:Most AMC's in LA charge $9 for the smallest bag of popcorn. I used to never buy concessions and I have definitely bought some recently with the mentality that, well, my ticket money is going into these overpriced kernels that they pump like oxygen so why not? And i'm not the only one, most of the people i know that have movie pass now stock up on concessions for the same reason.
So, this is basically getting a subscription to MoviePass in order to save money from overpriced tickets, but the savings go into totally over-priced food instead ? That seems absolutely counter-productive. I mean, except if you physically can't sustain 2 hours without eating or drinking, why would you put your savings in something such absurdly over-priced like theater food ?

User avatar
DarkImbecile
LightGenius
Joined: Mon Dec 09, 2013 6:24 pm
Location: Albuquerque, NM

Re: MoviePass

#248 Post by DarkImbecile » Thu Apr 26, 2018 12:32 pm

movielocke wrote:
DarkImbecile wrote:THR has details on the first major poll of MoviePass subscribers, who on average see six more movies a month than nonsubscribers while spending just as much on concessions per visit; 60% of subscribers feel the service is probably unsustainable.
I think you misread it, it is six more movies over six months, or an average of one more movie per month.
Perhaps this is just wishful thinking that my reading comprehension hasn't atrophied to quite this extent, but I'd swear that that's not what that graphic said a few days ago; however, I don't see a correction or anything appended to the article, so I guess... oops.

User avatar
movielocke
Joined: Fri Jan 18, 2008 12:44 am

Re: MoviePass

#249 Post by movielocke » Fri Apr 27, 2018 3:10 am

Gonna disagree with phantom force, people are always buying concessions in LA theatres, for sixteen years, my experience in LA has been it’s always a five to ten minute wait for concessions unless it’s a weekday showing, and on a big movie release if you want concessions expect to wait twenty minutes. The multiplexes in dense areas of LA and the big multiplexes are always packed on big opening weekends, most are packed on weekends period. and weeknight showings are not packed to the gills, the two movies I saw on weeknights recently had two and ten, respectively, in attendance, myself included. And the film with two people ? Black panther.

I never buy concessions (unless I have skipped a meal or am with my wife), and movie pass has not changed that behavior at all. If anything my perspective is to especially avoid concessions so that I can maximize the value of the subscription.


Post Reply