Will You Watch More or Less Movies in Theaters That Require Wearing a Mask?

How easy is it going to be eating popcorn and drinking soda while wearing a mask? Um, a distraction to the experience, definitely.

To mask or not is now being debated in the movie theater world.

AMC has reversed their decision to now requiring moviegoers to wear masks in their theaters. Before, they were going to allow their patrons to make that choice for themselves.

“This announcement prompted an intense and immediate outcry from our customers, and it is clear from this response that we did not go far enough on the usage of masks,” Aron said in a statement on Friday. “At AMC Theatres, we think it is absolutely crucial that we listen to our guests. Accordingly, and with the full support of our scientific advisors, we are reversing course and are changing our guest mask policy.”

AMC Theatres reverses course, requiring guests to wear masks – CNN

I haven’t seen that Regal will be requiring masks, unless required by governmental order, which was a similar position AMC took initially. Since a very tiny percentage of movies we watch at AMC theaters, whatever policies they choose will have almost no impact on our movie theater watching experience.

One of many things that has changed for our lifestyle is wearing masks. When it’s required for use at a business, as is the case with most casinos, we wear them. When it’s optional, we don’t. At work? It’s mostly required for both of us, so we wear them. I’d be lying if I said wearing a mask is something either of us enjoy. We don’t.

Do we feel safer with everybody wearing masks? Honestly, no. Do you? This might be controversial, but I feel sicker wearing a mask than being able to breathe naturally without one. They also fog up my glasses making it harder for me to walk around safely. Don’t even get me started on sneezing or coughing inside one. The wearing mask experience sucks, sorry.

There are practical considerations when wearing a mask as part of the movie theater watching experience. We both love popcorn, so we’re nearly constantly eating throughout the film. This is going to cause adjusting and readjusting a mask every single time a bite is taken, not to mention drinking soda.

We can watch movies at home without wearing a mask.

This got me thinking about the question raised in the title. Will wearing a mask make me want to see less movies in theaters? I don’t think so. Despite not enjoying wearing a mask, it’s not so unenjoyable that it will cause me to say, “I won’t go see Tenet at any theater that makes me wear a mask.”

However, if we have a choice between theaters that require masks and those who don’t? We would probably choose the one that doesn’t require a mask.

Since we really miss the movie watching in theater experience, a mask being required isn’t going to prevent us from seeing a movie. Some may not go back to theaters if they are forced to wear masks. It seems a bit silly a reason to reduce movie watching in theaters, but I’m curious how this might impact other moviegoers interest?

Will you watch more or less movies in a theater that require wearing a mask?

10 thoughts on “Will You Watch More or Less Movies in Theaters That Require Wearing a Mask?

  1. As someone who still isn’t going to theaters for the foreseeable future, this doesn’t apply to me as much. However masks being optional would probably be enough of a deterrent to keep me from going if I was planning on it. While cloth masks won’t directly protect patrons from others, they do decrease the chances of asymptomatic carriers infecting others. If they’re optional then that means any slew of asymptomatic people can sit around you (even if the seats are distanced and cleaned) while actively contributing to the space you’re stuck in for hours. That seems too irresponsible to me.

    Just from a company standpoint, not forcing a mask compliance, risks awful publicity if infections are tied to the theater and then linked to their lack of safety protocol. It seems like a smart option all around to make it mandatory.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you for weighing in. So, if they are checking temps of patrons at the door, that seems to be some sort of checking. Guess I don’t instantly feel safer seeing people in masks. I do, however, realize that some others do and, as you indicate, it does technically provide some sort of additional safety. Great comment!

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Hi Todd, greetings from Singapore! Over here, it’s still uncertain when cinemas will be opened, but I suspect when they do, the authorities will make mask-wearing mandatory, which is kind of a bummer for me – because I find wearing a mask uncomfortable after 30 mins and can’t really breathe that well. And that fogging of specs – very true! (I need to see the film clearly!). I guess for me, I’ll be a bit more selective when going to the cinemas and only watch those that I really, really want/need to see. All the best and take care!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I was already leaning toward not going back to the theater until a vaccine was in place because I had thought about the mask situation like you described. Trying to eat popcorn and drink soda would be very hard. I enjoy snacks at the movie just like you do, especially my chocolate covered almonds! LOL! Also, the length of movies nowadays are upwards of 2 hours without previews and that is a long time to wear a mask. I am venturing out to the grocery store and to doctor appts and just wearing a mask there is nerve racking. So I think I will just wait. I plan on blogging about it next month.

    Liked by 1 person

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