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Paying for Movies


Once upon a time, I went to movies. The last movie I saw in a theatre was Hitchhiker's Guide. I was pregnant. Since having T., I have not been to a movie theatre, and here is why. At first, there was the whole breastfeeding thing (and no way was I going to attempt to take one or more of the children with me -- I can wear ear plugs, but I didn't see that going over well with them) -- getting the 4+ hour block of time free just to sit in the (sticky) dark didn't seem all that compelling.

Once that was over, I had a related problem: timing a matinee movie to end in time for me to be home for the kids' return (3:15ish for the first one). There's no way I'd waste a (rare) evening out with R. on a movie.

So. No movies out, only movies in. Honestly, not very many movies in because my attention span just isn't that long for watching things, so I watch TV shows instead (shorter!).

When I was last seeing movies (ending in 2005), it was (and had been for a very long time) possible to pay for movies with credit cards, altho most people didn't and there was usually an ATM in the lobby or very close by. Things like Fandango (possibly including Fandango -- I don't really recall) already existed as well. But most people stood in line and paid with cash in the hour or so before they expected to sit down and watch the movie. If it was a big movie, someone might be sent to the theatre in advance to buy tickets for a larger group.

Apparently, during the time that I stopped seeing movies, people stopped paying for movies with folding green stuff. They may pay with a credit or debit card at the time of arrival at the theatre, in advance through Fandango or similar. Some people are still paying on the spot with folding green stuff (and there are still very handy ATMs), but outside of oddball places that show old or unusual movies, often for cheap, most people are not.

8 years. Big change. As near as I can tell, all but invisible to the people who lived through the change. Kind of a shock to someone like me, who thought she'd taken a brief hiatus from movie-going only it turned into almost 20% of her life when she wasn't paying attention.