Not many movie theaters offer salads, tortillas, tuna handrolls and lemongrass flank steak skewers. But Living Room Theaters is not trying to be like most theaters.
Quite the opposite, in fact. CEO Diego Rimoch, who cofounded the first Living Room Theatres location in Portland, is hoping his new four-screen art-house on FAU’s Boca Raton campus will raise the standard for the contemporary moviegoing experience, correcting what multiplexes and even some independent theaters have done wrong – which he says is everything.
“They get everything from the choice of movies to the feel of the space to the interior design to cleanliness and concessions wrong,” Rimoch told me, just a few hours before a press conference introducing the new theater to the press this week. “You go to multiplexes these days, and they’re playgrounds for teenagers, who are texting and playing with their phones. And the choice of movies is usually whatever action movie will appeal to that demographic. Concessions are usually limited to stale popcorn and soda, and the floors can be sticky. And it’s not inviting – when the movie’s over, they want you to leave. What I like to say is, the experience has to meaningful.”
Well, Diego, tell us how you really feel. But seriously, one look at the new facility reveals that it is in fact a major step up from most theaters, art house or otherwise. The oversized, slightly rocking leather chairs spare no expense, and the large armrests allow room for the wine and microbrew offerings that can be purchased before each screening or even delivered to your seat. The comfort is so contagious that it’s almost enough to get me past my as-yet-insurmountable pet peeve: The fact that it’s an all-digital house, without the capability to screen 35mm film.
If I can ever get past that hurdle, Living Room Theatres will surely be one theater I frequent. The selection of films for the Grand Opening weekend, slated for Dec. 2 to 5, include “Client 9,” the documentary about Eliot Spitzer; “Enter the Void,” the latest hallucinatory trip from controversial director Gasper Noe; the Chinese documentary “Last Train Home;” German director Faith’s Akin’s food comedy “Soul Kitchen;” and Alfred Hitchcock’s “Psycho,” celebrating its 50th anniversary.
For the opening weekend screenings, the price is right, too. You can see any and all of these films for just $2 during that time.
“I think it will be a substantial addition to the Boca Raton cultural scene,” Rimoch says.
For a full schedule of upcoming show times, visit www.livingroomtheaters.com.