This pixie loves movies, but hates going to the theatre. A few years back, I have an almost knock-down, drag out fight with a moron who decided to have a loud conversation on his cell phone during most of The Village. Yes, I admit I actually went to the theatre to see that movie. I complained to the manager about the offense (unfortunately not the film as well), and the jackass was spoken to twice. Afterwards, myself, my friends and 3 other strangers cornered him, letting him know he owed us the cost of our tickets because he was so disruptive. The theatre manager gave us free passes as a result of the mishap, but it still gets my goat every time I think about the incident. And these days, with people getting shot up or assaulted at the movies, times are a changin’.
You would never know it in my day-to-day life, but I suffer from mild anxiety. I don’t like crowds and after the above incident, my dislike for the general public has grown enormously. Going to the movie theatre is therefore a chore for me, so when I heard that my local Cineplex Odeon opened a fresh, new V.I.P. section, I was game. I had been to one of these theatre before and enjoyed it, but always had to travel to the heart of downtown. Now I would have this option 10 minutes away from me, and with my sister in tow, away we went!
Touted as “a luxurious movie-going experience” with valet parking and 10% off of food and ticket prices for Scene card holders, the first thing that jumped out at me was the 19 years or older sign at the front entrance. Heaven! When I went to see Machete, there was a group with toddlers in the audience. Go figure. I wouldn’t have to deal with that here! The neatly dressed, friendly staff took our payment ($19.99 with taxes included per person) at the sleek front desk, and we walked into a nice bar/lounge/restaurant area. A streamline fireplace sat in the center of the space, as well as a bar stocked with neat rows of Bombay Sapphire (yes!) and Grey Goose, huge flat screen T.V.s, and huge picture windows facing the expansive parking lot. The décor was modern with muted greys, black and turquoise accents, and beautiful black and white stills of celebrities graced the walls in classy mirrored frames.
We went to our theatre and found our reserved seats that we were able to choose when we purchased our tickets. Cushy, lazy boy type chairs with a table attached to each seat and ample leg room made us feel all fancy-like. Down in the front row, the adorable server informed us that those seats reclined. The in-seat service was available until the trailers started, so of course I made use of it, ordering a Caesar (tasty but weak) and calamari from their average priced Specialty Food Menu, while my sister stuck to popcorn and a soda. Aside from them forgetting my dip for the calamari which they promptly remedied, the service was great.
The screen was massive, the picture crisp and the sound was on point for the Robocop screening. I had someone sitting next to me, but there was enough space between us for me to feel comfortable. We also went to a Sunday afternoon show which was not as busy as a Friday or Saturday night, when the server said the V.I.P. section was the busiest because of date nights. Please note: this pixie will not settle for a regular movie night date anymore. If there is an attractive, non-broke, honest man who looks like Don Cheadle, Keanu Reeves, Dwayne Johnson, Willem Dafoe, Derek Luke, Mekhi Phifer, or Hiroyuki Sanada who would like to take me on a date, it’s V.I.P. all the way, baby! It’s ingenious, really. You can have a drink, appetizers, see a movie and maybe a light dinner afterwards all in one place, for maybe $20 more per person, and quite frankly, I’m worth it!
Oh yes, I must mention the washrooms. They were great. Instead of a ladies and men’s separate washroom with stalls, here you had several unisex rooms, or water closets. Each were very clean and private. As I returned from the modern w.c.’s, I could see the regular movie theatre through frosted glass doors with the “regular” ticket holders teeming just beyond. For a moment, I forgot all the debt, worries and crap of my daily life; forgot the sticky floors of the regular theatres and the optional flask I might or might not have normally tucked into my purse, feeling for a moment that I had arrived. Yeah, that moment didn’t last for long. I took the bus to the V.I.P. theatre, but at least I had a good time!
Summing this experience all up, I have to say my number one choice would be to stay home in my p.j.’s, with my cats and lots of snacks to watch a movie. If I want to see something first run, my only choice is to go to the theatre which is already expensive. I personally don’t mind the extra cost of the V.I.P. experience if it gets me the peace of mind because I am a little agoraphobic. It’s the price you pay for being slightly reclusive and you know what? I would definitely do it again!