The Cinema Strikes Back
Taking immersion to a new level the Cineworld’s 4DX experience also plays on the senses, using high-tech motion seats and special effects like wind, fog, lightning, bubbles, rain and smell to simulate the hero’s adventures. It might be a bit gimmicky, but it’s a unique experience that isn’t available at home on Netflix.
Innovative concepts like Fabienne Rigall’s Secret Cinema combine both the social side of movie-going and an immersive experience. Secret Cinema brings movies to life, putting on large scale re-enactments of cult films in abandoned spaces turned film sets, creating cine-worlds where audiences participate by dressing up in costume and interacting with performers. 2015’s production of The Empire Strikes Back brought 100,000 people to a derelict printing factory refashioned into some of the most memorable locations of the film, including a Toatooine inspired marketplace, ‘Cantina’ themed bar and regular glimpses of your favourite characters, from Chewie to R2D2. At £75 a ticket, the box office amounted to approximately £7.5 million. 
On top of booming box offices, Secret Cinema brings cinephiles together. Forbidden from taking photos and using technology, spectators are encouraged to fully immerse themselves in the experience, and seek connections with strangers. Whilst technology has revolutionized the way that we watch movies, for many this means watching films alone in bed on an iPad, or on the daily commute to and from work. Secret Cinema provides a welcome alternative: “I think people are hungry for experiences that would make them feel alive and connected to people,” said Rigall. 
Whilst digital streaming services gave birth to the concept of binge watching, and have fundamentally changed our relationship with the screen, the desire to go out to the cinema is still very much alive – whether that involves craft beer and burgers or dressing up as Yoda. As CEO of Everyman group, Crispin Lilly, highlighted, ‘People need escape… How often and what other opportunities do you have, other than maybe theatre, where the phone gets turned off and for two or three hours, you get transported somewhere else?’ What underlines many of these new cinema experiences is a push and pull between using new technology to enhance our cinematic experience and safeguard against its failings. Keeping the tradition of cinema alive is a key part of ensuring we don’t become a nation who never leave the living room, or who let the film industry become saturated by piracy. What’s more, it can be fun too.
 As quoted in The Guardian ‘Netflix poses no mortal threat to cinemas’
CNN Money, ‘This company makes millions showing movies you’ve seen already’
 As quoted in Screen Daily, ‘Secret Cinema founder talks ‘The Handmaiden’ tie-up, future plans’
UK Cinema Association, ‘UK cinema industry economics and turnover’
 BBC Culture, ‘Future Cinema: The Cinema Where You Are the Star’
 As quoted in The Evening Standard, ‘Phillip Knatchbull the Curzon Boss leading the Revolution in the World of Cinema’