One of the few perks that I missed after leaving LA was the plethora of great movie houses, with the arclight cinemas firmly planted at the top of that list. You get used to the idea of reserving a seat (wide and expansive one at that), enjoying perfect sound and picture, being commercial free, and occasionally drinking in the theater if it was so designated. Upon reentry into Portland I was quickly reminded that I was no longer at the bleeding edge of movie going experiences, rather I was quickly transported back to the mid 90's when neon, popcorn flavoring, and stadium seating just caught fire (a la most Regal Cinemas). It still amazes me that a city like Portland, which has transformed so much in the last 10 years and leads in a number of cool city features, fails so miserably with Theaters?
Enter the Living Room Theaters, a hybrid if you will of the Arclight experience I so richly enjoyed for years. The aptly named venue makes you feel as if you were enjoying this movie going experience in the comforts of your own theater. Outfitted with some of the most plush theater seats I have experienced including the option of an ottoman, shit I might fall asleep like I do at home. If you are with a big group they have an area in the back with great chairs and coffee tables to enhance that living room feeling even more. Sound and picture are top notch, the only gripes would have are the size of the screens and the inability to reserve a specific seat.
Upon entry into the space you are greeted with a swank bar and eating lounge with floor to ceiling windows to enjoy the hustle and bustle of Stark. While I didn't have any food, it looked good and the people in our theater cleaned their plates, so I am assuming it is decent. I like how all theaters allow for cocktailing, I was even impressed that my cafe americano in large porcelain cup fit perfectly in the arm of my chair (well thought out).
It looks as though most movies are a little more intellectual in content than your typical Regal, so I would consider it on the scale of an art house. Clearly you are paying for the amenities, but in my book it is worth the extra dollar or two.
see you at the movies.
P.S. They are showing "Christmas Story" in 3D for the month of December, a classic remastered for your viewing pleasure. Can you imagine the leg stocking lamp in 3D?
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About the reviewer
Lee Barth (macstash)
Web consultant, foodie, photog, and techie.
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