That’s right…an indoor drive-in.
When I first heard news of this new $10 million indoor drive-in near Nashville, I actually thought it was a regular drive-in but had a cover over it, like one of those indoor sports field. At that point, I thought that was the coolest idea since the invention of the corndog! But the more I read through a few different articles on this, it isn’t what I thought it was. While it is an indoor theater, the cars are just permanently parked there. Not sure if they are actual even real cars or just seats fabricated classic car. So while it has the look and set up of a drive-in, not sure if it is going to have the real feel of one.
Now don’t get me wrong. I’m trying to shit on what sounds like a unique and “out of the box (office)” idea for a different kind of movie-going experience. But as I read on, they say they want to “recreate the past while embracing the future.” New flash, people! Not only are there drive-in theaters still around, but more importantly, they are fighting to stay alive! So why not just go to a real one and support one of those?
I see the novelty of this whole thing, getting to sit in a classic car, with all the bells and whistles of the new technology and audience interactions, which I’m not really sure what that exactly means. But is it worth it? And will it last? According to Variety, where I first came across this, the theater will be “tricked out with interactive billboard technology” where “the screen will allow live performers to engage the audience members during previews and post-credits sequences. The entire experience of seeing a movie, including exploration of the space, plus flood and drink service, is estimated to take about three hours for a 90-minute film.”
So I could see this being kind of cool the first time. But wouldn’t a 3-hour experience be a bit much if you just want to go see the movie every weekend?
But here’s the real interesting part. Ticket prices range from $8 to $20, depending on where you sit. The $20 ticket is if you want to sit in one of the 50 or 80 (depending on which report) classic ’60s cars. The other seating ranges from stadium seats to even tree swings?!?!?
The articles states that they would not only be showing first run features but will also have special screenings like they do at places like the Alamo Drafthouse. Seems a bit risky to be dropping $10 million into something like this. Just imagine if you put that kind of money into a real drive-in theater???
Not that Nashville is close enough for me do to a roadtrip (who am I kidding…I drove to PA for one), but for me, I’d be more than happy to just stick with the couple of drive-ins that I go to on an annual basis and have all the fun the old fashion way, with some awesome movies, and having fun with a collection of fellow cinemaphiles that truly appreciate what a drive-in is all about.
And while on the soapbox, do yourself a favor and make plans to visit a drive-in theater this spring/summer. I’m sure there is one close to you. Or even if there isn’t, I know there are several that host those all-night movie marathons that are more than worth making the trip for. I do it every year and have a blast each and every time. For me, the closest one is the Midway Drive-In in Sterling/Dixon, IL, which I’ve been going to for several years. Mike and Mia Kerz who run it, hold From Dusk Til Dawn Horror movie marathons every fall. Not to mention that it is a great place and really is like stepping back in time. For more information about the Midway, click HERE.
Or if you’re closer to Indianapolis, IN area, the Skyline Drive-In in Shelbyville has their annual Super Monster Movie Fest (this year on Aug. 25th & 26th), which has two nights of classic movies, ranging from old black and white features to the ’70s and ’80s classics. Highly recommend this even as well. Click HERE for more info.
And then there is also the Drive-In Monster-Rama at the Riverside Drive-In in Vandergrift, PA. Their spring show is taking place on April 28th & 29th. For more details, just click HERE.
So yeah, it’s pretty cool that someone is trying to create something from the past. But for me, I’d rather go to that past while it is still in the present. So go out and support your drive-in. You’ll be happy you did. See you there. I’ll be the one eating several corn dogs throughout the event!