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Why People Choose to Watch Movies at the Cinema

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The outside world is changing at a high rate and an important question is how the cinema can continue to be relevant to the audience. In particular in these tips when streaming online and watching movies from home has exploded.

In this article, we look at the motives behind the audience’s choice to still watch movies in the cinema and what experiences the cinema competes with.

The cinema accounts for a small part of the total film viewing but is still a concern for the majority of the population.

The vast majority of people who watch movies state that they go to the cinema at least once a year. Despite competition from new forms of film, cinema visits have remained at the same level since the mid-1980s. Most films still have their premiere in cinema and are shown exclusively during the first few months. But the outside world is changing at a high rate and an important question is how the cinema can continue to be relevant to the audience in the future.

But what are the motives behind the audience’s choice to watch movies in the cinema and what experiences the cinema competes with?

The big movie screen is most important

Studies have found that the big movie screen is the primary motif for watching movies at the cinema. Followed by the cinema showing new movies, that is a good way to spend time with family and friends and that it is good sound at the cinema. Cinema commercials, 3D, candy/popcorn, and comfortable chairs/armchairs are perceived as less important for most people.

The importance of different motives differs between different groups. For women, for example, it is more important that the cinema is a good way to spend time with family/friends, that the cinema has a cozy environment and is a break from home and that candy/popcorn tastes good at the cinema. For men, on the other hand, it is more important with a large film screen, good sound and 3D.

When it comes to competitors of the cinema, the primary “substitutes” of going to the cinema includes reading books, computer/TV games, nature experiences, concerts/music, family, Netflix, sleep/rest, shopping, stroll, travel/excursion, coffee, party, social games, football, museum/exhibition, and more.

The most common competitor and substitute of going to the cinemas is going to a pub, bar, restaurant or cafe, and of course staying at home and watching TV. Generally, the competition can be divided into two main groups: partly other social activities and partly other ways of looking at film / moving image.

Staying at home, spending time with friends/acquaintances, shopping and coffee are perceived as more competitive among women than among men.

Large movie screen is what mainly attracts the audience to the cinema. The fact that the cinema shows new films, that it is a good way to spend time with family and friends and that it is a good sound at the cinema are also important aspects.

Competition against cinema can be divided into two main groups: partly other social activities and partly other ways of viewing film / moving image. In terms of social activities, the cinema can meet the competition, for example, by investing in a restaurant, bar, and cafe. As for other ways of looking at film / moving image, the competition can be met by investing in large film cloths, new films, and good sound.

Women and men have to a certain extent different motives for going to the cinema and partly feel that there are different experiences that cinema competes with. The social aspects are generally more important for women, while the technical aspects of the film experience are more important for men.

There are also differences between different age groups. Other ways of looking at film / moving images are greater competition for young people, while competition for older people is more about other cultural experiences. For young people, cinema is already perceived as a good way to spend time with others, while older people feel that socializing is something that competes with the cinema experience.

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