The cracking noise from all directions drowned out the “pew pew” sounds of Avengers Infinity War. It seems we missed the memo: almost every person in this Mandalay, Myanmar, movie theater had traded popcorn for sunflower seeds. Inside this mirror image of an American-style cinema, with stadium-style aging velor seats, a crowded theater ate and chatted noisily throughout the film. When the lights came on, seashells were strewn from every seat, and instead of sticky floor we trudged on crusty floor.
by Leos Carax Sacred Engines was the first movie I ever saw while traveling. When I was 20, studying abroad in Paris, I decided to test my French skills in the theater. Luckily for me, this auteur film didn’t have a lot of dialogue.
“France is the homeland of cinema, where it was invented in 1895, and Paris is still today the world capital of cinema”, declares Manon Kerjean, founder of Lost in the Francophonie, an organization whose objective is to enable non-French speakers to access French cinema through screenings with English subtitles in independent cinemas in France. “Cinema is part of everyday life in France, like shopping or eating out, but is seen more as culture than entertainment.”
When you travel, going to the movies isn’t just a rainy day activity, it’s a cultural experience. Across languages and countries, movies are a global unifier these days. No matter what language you speak (thanks to subtitles and voice acting), theater people will cry when the fan favorite dies, laugh when the sidekick cracks a joke, and cheer when the villain loses. Yet each country has its own cinematic rituals, unique snacks, and theatrical oddities that a trip to the movies is well worth a few hours of your far-flung trip. Although you may not be a local, 120 minutes spent sitting among dozens of them can make you feel like one.
I saw more movies in Thailand than elsewhere, Top Gun: Maverick at Jordan Peele We. The first time I went to the cinema in Chiang Mai, moviegoers began to rise as a royal anthem blared from the PA system. I looked around in confusion as someone waved me up and images of the king flashed across the screen in a multi-minute montage. While Americans have something similar at sporting events, I’ve never encountered it in any other theater in the world.
Thailand is also home to the most expensive movie experience I have ever had. Inside bangkokthe chic Central Embassy Mall, a ticket to Embassy diplomats screens costs $50. While the movie we saw, The lost city, wasn’t worth the cost of admission, the over-the-top movie experience was. This theater comes with a pre-movie buffet, unlimited drinks, and once you’re in your bed-like seats, a well-stocked mini-fridge and blankets.
In true American fashion, my favorite movie snack is usually covered in chocolate. But in South Koreathe choices for Elvis were distinctly tasty, from popcorn and hot dogs to dried squid. According to Dr. Hye Seung Chung, professor of film and media studies at Colorado State University, South Koreans visit movie theaters an average of 4.37 times a year, compared to the four times a year Americans buy a ticket. movies. “Due to the high density and overcrowding of the capital, Seoul, there are few places where young couples and families can spend free time and enjoy each other’s company,” she said. . “In fact, movie theaters are some of the cheapest places where couples and families can spend two to three hours without incurring any expenses other than admissions (and concessions).”