I disappoint a lot of people when they ask if I want to go to the movies. I do not try to fit in my elevator anti-pitch anymore because I keep finding new reasons to skip the theaters.
Waste of money.
If you really want the thrill of gambling, go to Vegas where you might actually win. There is no guarantee or money back policy if the movie is a flop, and I just traded 90 minutes of my life, $20, and the amount of time it took to earn that $20.
Waste of time.
If you are looking for some quality time, stay away from the theater. There is no talking during, and most post-movie discussion lasts 5 minutes or a lucky 10. Instead, you and your friend or partner could be at a coffee shop, bistro, dog park, or human park, talking and sharing instead of paying to sit in a dark room with similarly hypnotized strangers whose brains are ridiculously receptive to the ridiculous content of popular media. Fact: watching TV and movies inhibits our most advanced brain centers and weakens them over time.
We as a society are watching more and moving less; our health declines and our cyber lives develop while our real lives languish behind our screens. The movie theater just makes the screen bigger, and our sense of excitement is coming from images bigger than life and a lot less believable.
The entertainment industry has outdistanced the standard list of addictions because we look for more and more, training our brains to just watch instead of buoying up our own skills and imaginations. We see the same problem increasingly in schools where students who have grown up with television instead of books cannot create mental pictures in their minds when they do read. Going to the theaters is like going to a professional sports game – you get to witness and pretend you are participating.
Going to the theaters allows us to sit back and “be entertained” with no other distractions, a willing audience for whatever may come. The overall trend is that we are paying more to do less. Some of the epic sagas like “Lord of the Rings” are great on the big screen, but we are also desensitized to the intensifying levels of violence. As we push into more and more disturbing territory, we put our brains on blast and our body chemistry goes haywire. Comedies that make us laugh do help our brains release endorphins, but our horror and action films spike the stress hormone, cortisol, and increase our physiological responses to danger.
In conclusion, there are better ways to spend time and money building relationships or training our brains to work on their own. Many of us are afraid to be alone and silent, so we trot off to the movies to be alone, essentially, but bombarded by stimuli. If it calms you down and enhances your serenity, keep doing what you are doing. If, on the other hand, your life could use some changes, look for small ways to move toward what you want and away from what is not working.