Opinion: Sad-looking Mays Landing Movie Theater Represents the Past Eight Months
I think I found a picture that pretty much represents what we have all been going through since February or March.
It's the Regal Cinemas building in Mays Landing.
You have probably heard that Cineworld, which owns and operates over 500 Regal Cinemas across the country, suspended operations recently due to the impact COVID-19 has had on the entertainment industry. Simply put, if there are practically no new movies to show at a movie theater, they aren't making any money. If they aren't making any money, they can't keep 500 theaters open.
Now, it's important to highlight the phrase, "suspended operations" -- that leaves the door open (figuratively speaking) for them to reopen if and when big blockbusters start rolling-out of Hollywood again. And that also means they have not walked away from 500 movie theaters. More on that in a moment.
Anyway, I happened to drive by Regal Cinemas in Mays Landing Sunday night and it made me quickly pull into their parking lot and take a picture.
A very colorful building sat there completely cold and grey.
On any given pre-pandemic weekend this parking lot would be practically overflowing. This weekend, not one car.
A parking lot that was as bright as any pro sports stadium was dark. Every light was off.
You can see through the front doors a completely empty concession counter. No popcorn, no candy, no 55-gallon cups of soda being sold. I betcha it still smells like popcorn, though.
No movie posters advertising the next big thing that everyone will want to see.
And the low-hanging clouds hovering over the building just kinda added insult to injury.
Then I thought that what I was looking at was a pretty good snapshot of what we have all been through since February or March. Countless things that we all used to take for granted have changed -- in many cases, quite drastically. Beyond the physical or routine things and stuff, I think many of us have felt kinda dark and grey along the way, too. This stuff hasn't been easy. It's tough. I wish I could just say, "hang in there," but I think we're beyond that.
Oh, and before I forget to circle-back to this -- there are people that like exploring abandoned buildings and stuff. There are thousands of videos on YouTube of people walking around empty buildings. The movie theater in Mays Landing is NOT abandoned. It's still fully owned and maintained. Simply put, if you break in to look around, you will be arrested.