In 2003, I remember going to the most transcendent movie experience of my life: The Return of the King on opening day.
Wow. To this day I remember every little detail. From the bombastic CGI that no one has ever witnessed before on the screen to the emotionally draining ending(s) where we see our heroes pass into legend, there was nothing I have forgotten about that overwhelming experience.
And there was one more thing that I recall. This had nothing to do with the movie itself. It had to do with what I noticed before the movie.
Right above the listing of ‘Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King’ was another film. Another film that, is fair to say, is the exact opposite of ROTK in just about every way.
Yes, my friends, due of our alphabetical system, K comes before L. So this meant an 80 minute thrown-together kiddy movie featuring a talking Kangaroo (with a backwards hat on and rapping ‘Hip to the hop to the hippity hop) was slated right next to the 11 Oscar-winning, 3 1/2 hour movie of a generation.
But that is not what resonates with me the most. What still is unbelievable to me is that these two movies cost the same price.
The exact same price.
This goes well beyond the Kangaroo Jack vs LOTR comparison. It made me realize that EVERY movie costs the same, regardless of length, demand of audience to see it, or quality (yes, I know there is a different price for 3-D currently, but that difference in price is not based on the actual quality of film).
So Star Wars, a movie that will gross more than God, will be the same cost as a sequel to The Hottie and the Nottie. Moonlight, winner of Best Picture, costs the same as Smurfs: The Lost Village.
This made me think is the movie industry the only one that is unaffected by basic Capitalist ideas of supply/demand and quality of product? I mean this would be like a Ferrari being the same price as a Chevy Aveo or oceanfront property in Santa Barbara being the same worth as a shack in Jackson, Mississippi.
I don’t get it. I have no idea why movie studios adjust prices based on simple projected supply/demand curves. I know there is a middle man in all of this; the theater itself that has to show these movies. But as we all know, the movie studios have a royal flush in this game of poker while the theaters have Jack high.
In a way, this helps we the consumer. I mean it is a good thing that Boss Baby is the same price as something we actually want to see, like Get Out or anything with King Kong.
Regardless, I still do not fully understand why this is the case. Maybe someday this will change, but before then, I am going to sit back and enjoy the fact that the new Planet of the Apes will not cost more than the next Michael Bay film.