Despite the fact that I write a weekly feature about movies, I hate going to the theater. I don't generally like crowds, the food isn't great, the seats aren't usually comfortable, I hate when people make noise during movies, somebody in there just called me a jerk, our pets' heads are falling off! ...sorry, I went off there for a moment.

There is one thing that may change my attitude towards movie theatres: AMC Dine-In Theatres. Unfortunately, right now the only ones in New Jersey are way the hell up north, in Bridgewater, West Orange, and Edison; hopefully more will open closer to our area. My girlfriend lives in Old Bridge, so the one in Edison wasn't too far to make the trip.

We finally got around to seeing The Dark Knight Rises (to be featured in [Celluloid Hero] tomorrow), and going to a Cinema Suites made it a totally different experience.

As far as my main complaints, they were pretty much all addressed.

Don't like crowds/uncomfortable seats - the theater is regular-sized, but with a lot less seating. Each seat is much bigger than a typical theatre seat, so there are fewer tickets available for each show. There is also more room between you and the rest of the movie-goers, so it feels more free. The seats are also great, big and comfy, and recline to an almost completely flat position.

Food isn't great - the menu is pretty impressive. My girlfriend and I split the "crab rangoon dip" appetizer, she got quesadillas, I got chicken fingers. I was hesitant to get something that required using utensils, because I felt the seats and swivel tables wouldn't be totally comfortable. I opted for finger foods and was pleasantly surprised.

People making noise - well, in this case I was still a bit annoyed. The crowd was well-behaved (the fact that you have to be 21+ helps keep away noisy kids), but the obvious issue with waitress service is that the waitress has to bring food, check on refills, deliver the check, etc. It managed to not be totally distracting, and I understand the trade-off that goes along with the experience.

 

I'm definitely hoping one will open in Ocean County, or at least in Monmouth. Luckily it's not too far to enjoy once in a while.

Have you ever gone to one of these theatres? If you haven't, are you interested? Comment below!