Runner on the Street: Video-on-Demand vs Movie Theaters

Jocelyn Sandusky, Opinions Editor

This year theaters across the country shut down in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Many studios delayed the release of major pictures slated to release this year, but some decided to forgo theatrical releases and instead opted to distribute films through a premium video-on-demand format. If studios see that movies are profitable without having to distribute to theaters, will movie theaters become obsolete?  

 Do you prefer watching new movie releases from the comfort of your home, or do you enjoy the cinematic experience of the theater? 

Jonathan Coelho (Jonathan Coelho)

 When it comes to watching new film releases, I prefer the experience of watching them at the theater. One reason I prefer the theater is because of nostalgia. [Its] something I enjoyed doing with my family as a child. The other reason is because it is nice to get out of the house and watch the films in high definition and surround sound. I still enjoy the theater experience, especially when the theater opens in the morning during the weekday because I will have the entire theater to myself, [and] there will be less distractions.” – Jonathan Coelho, public administration, graduate student

“As far as watching new release movies, I prefer to watch them at the comfort of my home, since first of all, I get to cook and eat snacks for a way cheaper

Adrian Romero (Adrian Romero)

price, [and] second, in my home there [are] no distractions or people getting in your way in [the] middle of the movie. Having access to new movies in your home is more affordable for us college students! I would say the only thing I miss from going to the theaters to watch a movie is the social aspect, hanging out with your friends, or the best part, watching trailers of the new upcoming movies that will be released.” – Adrian Romero, Spanish, graduate student

Sydnee Johanesen (Sydnee Johanesen)

“I absolutely, without a doubt, prefer the cinematic experience of a theater when Im watching a movie for the first time. I think its really fun to get ready and go out to the movies with my sister, dad, or friends, pay too much for unhealthy snacks, and [become] immersed [in] the dark rooms and giant screens. There’s something thrilling about viewing films that way.” – Sydnee Johanesen, math education, senior

Tori Hernandez (Tori Hernandez)

 I actually prefer to watch them at home. It seems weird, but I can be in my comfy clothes, and no one is kicking the back of my seat [and] kids arent screaming.” – Tori Hernandez, psychology, junior

Aaliyah Hannible (Aaliyah Hannible)

 I would have to say the cinematic experience of the theater. A Friday night out with friends to watch whatever new, overhyped romcom is released that weekend. The overpriced snacks, the cozy new recliner seats of the Maya theater- there’s nothing like it!” – Aaliyah Hannible, communications, freshman