While movie theaters plot out their potential return for later this summer, drive-ins have saved the day for film fans and those just needing some entertainment away from their couch. Classic drive-ins have popped up around restaurants, at the ballpark and, starting on Friday, at movie theaters themselves as the new Parking Lot Cinema will open outside of the Marcus Majestic in Brookfield.
The blast-from-the-past concept will debut on May 29 through June 4 with a double feature of two fitting flashback favorites, "E.T. the Extra Terrestrial" and "Jurassic Park," with new movies expected to rotate in each Friday throughout the summer season.
Housing about 100 cars all staring at a 42-foot screen on the side of the Majestic, the Parking Lot Cinema will start at approximately 8:45 p.m., or sundown, each night with a 15-minute intermission between the two features and FM radio frequency providing the audio. Cars will be allowed in starting at 7:30 p.m.
As for concessions, moviegoers will be given a handout upon entry with instructions guiding you through the new process, but essentially, instead of going to a typical stand, food, drinks and snacks can be bought upon arrival either online, using the Marcus app or over the phone – though Marcus encourages ordering items prior to arrival via the website or the app. (Cash transactions will not be available on site.) Guests can then pick up their snacks and beverages from a designated area. Food service will stop 30 minutes into the start of the second movie.
Tickets for a double feature will cost $25 per carload on Mondays through Thursdays and $30 per carload on weekends. Tickets will need to be bought either online or via the Marcus Theatres app.
"We are excited to welcome back guests to our theatre through our second Parking Lot Cinema concept," said Rolando Rodriguez, chairman, president and CEO of Marcus Theatres, in a release. "We know that our guests are looking forward to enjoying movies together again, and this provides an option to do so. It also provides a comfortable way to ease into the process since viewing is from the privacy of their own vehicles. The first Parking Lot Cinema in Omaha, Nebraska received an amazing response this past weekend when it opened – so much so that we are already evaluating additional locations beyond it and the Majestic Cinema of Brookfield."
For more information on tickets – as well as further detail on drive-in's rules, procedures and guidelines regarding the coronavirus and public health – visit Marcus Theatres' website.
As much as it is a gigantic cliché to say that one has always had a passion for film, Matt Mueller has always had a passion for film. Whether it was bringing in the latest movie reviews for his first grade show-and-tell or writing film reviews for the St. Norbert College Times as a high school student, Matt is way too obsessed with movies for his own good.
When he's not writing about the latest blockbuster or talking much too glowingly about "Piranha 3D," Matt can probably be found watching literally any sport (minus cricket) or working at - get this - a local movie theater. Or watching a movie. Yeah, he's probably watching a movie.