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OPINION: Streaming services are killing the traditional movie theater experience

<p>A still from &quot;Spider-Man: No Way Home&quot; is pictured.</p>

A still from "Spider-Man: No Way Home" is pictured.

One of my favorite things to do is go to the movies. Don’t get me wrong, I love Netflix, Hulu and Disney+, but there is something about seeing a new movie in a theater.

More and more people are deciding to wait until a movie becomes available on a streaming service to watch it, instead of going to theaters. As someone who grew up with several movie theaters nearby,  I love going to the movies, and I am glad that they have opened back up after COVID-19. 

Buying the tickets, getting popcorn and other snacks and then walking into the theater ready to watch trailers for other upcoming movies is such a fun experience. Recently, I became a fan of Marvel movies, so the first movie I saw after everything started opening back up was "Spider-man: No Way Home." Hearing and witnessing the audience react as I did  is something you can’t get watching a movie on Netflix in your room.

I’ve gone to see the new "Dr. Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" movie twice already because of how much I miss seeing movies in the theater. Each time I went to see it, I saw a different preview that looked interesting and it made me excited for the next time I go to the movies.. I would turn to the person who I was with and say, “I have to come back to see that movie!” 

When I talk to my friends about my love for the movie theater, they said they don’t like going to the movies all that much. I was absolutely shocked to hear that: I genuinely thought everyone liked going to the movies. One of my friends said she would rather wait until it was put on Disney+. 

Streaming services are killing the movie theater experience. Movies get put on there first instead of being sent to the theaters, or people choose to wait until the movie is available on a streaming service to watch it at home instead.

I remember going to the movies pre-COVID-19, and the theaters were packed with people. The last few times I have gone,  I’ve seen 20 people or less. 

I strongly believe that you are not just paying to see the movie, you are paying for the full experience.You can even start a tradition, like my mom and I did. Whenever we didn't have plans for New Years Eve, we would get tickets to see a movie at 11 or 11:30 p.m. that night, so we would go into the theater during the end of one year and come out at the start of another. 

The next time you and your friends have nothing to do, think about going to the movies. It's not terribly expensive if you eat beforehand (or sneak your own snacks in). It can also be a fun way to see what other movies are coming out soon. The movies can also give you something to look forward to or be used as an excuse to see your friends and take a break from school.

Olivia Franklin (she/her) is a junior studying journalism with a minor in political science. She is a member of the swim club at IU and the Women in Media organization.

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