I'd wanted to go to a movie for a while, but unfortunately none of the theaters in Beijing have websites in English and even with Google Chrome, it is really hard to get any good information. You either have to show up at the theater to read the movies/times or you have to find someone who can read or understand Chinese to look up the information. I chose to go to a new theater in Indigo Mall (颐堤港) called CGV Theater, it just opened a year ago, so I knew it would be nice.
China has a lot of movies that are made and produced in China that are HUGE blockbusters. But, they also get the world favorites. This weekend three imported movies that were playing were Epic, Gravity and Catching Fire. They played in English with Chinese subtitles.
First surprise:Seats are reserved, so you can show up just before showtime and snag your reserved seat. I have no idea how I'd go about doing this online, but I was row 7, seat 4 when I went.
You can go in and buy concessions without buying a ticket to the movie. The food is separate from the tickets and the theaters, so anyone can walk up and buy a popcorn or soda.
Great idea, I wish the local theaters in the US would do this, some days you just want good popcorn or soft pretzel without seeing a movie.
Third surprise:My popcorn was sweet like kettle corn, not buttery and salty. It was good, and luckily, I'd had advance notice from a friend, otherwise I would have been very surprised at my first bite.
My theater experience was really nice. I loved the reserved seats and the theater was really nice. Seats were on the small side for as luxurious as the place was but they didn't build the seats for me, this is my problem for being almost 6' tall in China.
I didn't even notice the subtitles after a while and the only thing that made me chuckle a few times was the difference in laughter between people reading versus people listening. A couple times I felt like the only person laughing for a second before everyone else caught up with reading.
I'm excited to go back again, now I just need to find someone to help me book tickets! I'm hoping Frozen comes before Christmas and we can watch it over the holiday break.