This week, The Bearded Giant headed back to his local cinema for the new film, Tomorrowland in IMAX.
As with Avengers 2, the tickets were purchased online, using WeChat. And as with Avengers 2, the price was super cheap. Just 30 RMB per ticket (roughly $4.90) for a new release film in IMAX. Similar to sporting events in the US, Chinese theaters use demand-based pricing (or “market pricing”). So if there are lots of unsold seats relative to what the theater expects, the film will be dirt cheap to attend. For movies near capacity, WeChat has shown prices in excess of 120 RMB for the same theater.
On arrival, it’s back to the snack bar! Yes, The Bearded Giant does enjoy snacks, convenience store or otherwise. This time around we opted for a “large” “popcorn”, two Cokes, and a sundae. But while waiting for the attendant to get our caramelcornmasqueradingaspopcorn, I took a moment to look at the other offerings.
That looks pretty sweet. They’ve got ICEEs just like back home. And bottled Sprite for 7 RMB ($1.15) which is a bargain for a movie theater.
Wait a minute.
Does that really?
Does that really say Corn Flakes With Cheese???
Yes it does.
And someone took a long time getting the font just right, and laying out that sign just so. I mean it’s kind of pretty, really.
Next time I am back home and thinking about having some nachos, I am going to stare the waitress right in the blinkers and deadpan, “Yes, I will have the Corn Flakes With Cheese, please.”
Corn Flakes With Cheese…
I mean technically it’s not wrong, I guess…
So here’s the rest of the menu board. I can’t read it. But I am sure there are lots of delightful options here:
Walking up to the theater, we saw a large display for a movie that came out this week.
Well… it came out this week in China…
If that looks like a movie that should be pretty cool, you’re right. It should be.
Or more accurately it should have been…
See, debuting this week in China, we have a movie that opened in the U.S. in January…
Why did it take 16 months to get here? Problems with the censors? Issues with licensing restrictions? Nah, I am gonna go with the fact that it’s terrible.
This movie was supposed to be released in February 2013, was pushed back to September 2013, then pushed back to January 2014. It opened to abysmal reviews (just 3% on Rotten Tomatoes), and has already been out on DVD for over a year. But maybe it was so awful no one bothered to make pirated DVDs of it, so no one in China had heard of it before. Here, in a theater near you! (If you happen to be in China…) It’s I, Frankenstein!
This movie is so bad, it was available opening day on WeChat for just 19.9RMB. That’s right. A “first-run” monster movie in 3D in the theater for $3.30. Better act fast!
(Full disclosure, if it’s still available at 20RMB next week, the Bearded Giant might go see it.)
This post was supposed to be about Tomorrowland…
Um yeah, saw it. It was decent, if a little uneven. Glad I saw it, but glad I didn’t pay $14 back home.