Movie tickets sales were very low last year, and I had the foresight to post why
Last year I caught wind of an article explaining the then imminent movie ticket price hike and wrote a post about it. Within the post I suggested that people start boycotting the theatres until ticket prices drop, but I also suggested that doing so was petty. However, I made a particularly worthwhile statement that bears repeating: “They do not seem to understand that hiking up the prices because people are going will eventually lead to people not going.”
Not even a year later, The Consumerist has linked to a post on USA Today discussing that ticket sales this past year have been at their lowest since 1996. The high ticket prices ensured that revenues were not down, but attendance has been lacking. Funny enough, no one is asking why.
I generally like to blame the content offered to the public. In a year like 2010, however, it seems inappropriate. While enjoyable films such as Scott Pilgrim and Kick-Ass did not see figures of which I deemed worthy, Inception, Toy Story 3, How to Train Your Dragon, and Despicable Me were all good films that generated great interest. The offerings were not the problem in the least. It was the entry fee.
I certainly attended the cinema less frequently in 2010 than in previous years, and this was for a variety of reasons. One of the main reasons was because it costs too much to see a movie. We spent $15 per ticket to see TRON: Legacy‘s midnight screening in IMAX 3-D. That was all the movie I needed to see for a two or even three month period.
Something needs to be said about the prices of concessions in most theatres as well. Popcorn and soft drinks are incredibly cheap items in bulk, so there is no reason they should cost anywhere around or upwards of $3 in their smallest portion. Same goes for the so-called nachos, which are generally stale tortilla chips served with a cup of disgustingly delicious lard. Unfortunately, in many parts, 2010 also saw the enactment of more strict policies regarding outside food and beverage. People attend movie theatres in hopes of having a fun evening out, but these prices and policies definitely suck the fun right out of a Friday night.