Can MoviePass Save Theaters?

www.mercurynews.com

The short answer, of course, is "no". But that doesn't mean theaters are doomed, just that the MoviePass model as it's currently constructed -- $9.95/month (or less!) for all-you-can-eat (well, a movie a day) -- is untenable at best, and dangerous (for theaters) at worst. 

Yes, the price cut is "working" in that more people are signing up and more people are going to see movies (versus the old price -- first $50/month, then $35/month -- which was never going to work). But obviously, anything over one movie per month per user and MoviePass is losing money (and in some bigger cities, they're losing money on the first visit). 

I know they're saying they're going to make it up with concession stand cuts, and eventually "big data", or maybe even by producing their own films, but come on. This is not Netflix. I know that if you squint really hard, it may look like Netflix -- there are "flix" involved after all! -- but it's not. And I worry everyone involved is going to learn this the hard way.

The "right" way to save theaters is to make them a truly great experience. A true night out. Something you can't replicate in the home. Sure, cost is a factor, but it's not the only one. I would argue it's not even the main one. 

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