Guest Post: Regal Cinemas Manassas $1 Movies

Thanks and welcome to Caitie from Tweedledeedle for writing up this review for us! Caitie is a recent transplant from one end of the county to the other, and a mom of two adorable little ones.

$1 Movies at Regal Cinemas Manassas

Having two children who were born in Woodbridge, I was a ginormous fan of AMC's Summer Movie Camp. What's not to love? You go the week before, you buy your tickets, you show up day of, no line, you buy popcorn, you sit down, you watch, you laugh, you leave. Excellent.

However, given that AMC decided to cancel their summer program for the 2011 season (sad!) and coupled with the fact that my family and I moved out to Bristow in the spring, I'm now in the market for a new dollar-kids-movie-on-the-weekday venue.

Enter Regal Cinemas Manassas. Remember all that stuff I said earlier about what's to love about AMC? Yep, after reading this you'll be missing it as much as I do - even if you'd never been to an AMC before in your life.

The past Tuesday morning dawned bright and sunny. The perfect day for the pool, except we were all a little tired of the pool. Great day, thought Mom, for a movie. Let's go see "Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs".

I drove up to the theater at 9:31 and was greeted by the sight of a line of parents, children, and (what I assume to be) various daycare and church groups snaking from the front doors halfway down the building. This did not bode well for my littlest, who at two is not fond of standing still in lines. As it got closer to 10:00, the line moved along and we bought our tickets right around 10:07 (yep, almost 10 minutes after the movie started, and we got there almost half an hour early). After having bought a kid's pack (small drink, small popcorn and bag of fruit snacks, $5.75) and taken a fast restroom break, we made our way into the theater, only to find...no available seats. Not one. Not even that lone, one-third-of-the-way-across-the-fourth-row-from-the-top no-mans-land seat.

Trekked out of the pitch black theater juggling a two year old, four year old and a tray of food, to find a manager. The one I found was having his ear chewed by another mother annoyed that it had taken so long to get through the line that she and her kids had missed the beginning of the movie (can't blame her for that, I was less than ecstatic myself). After she had her say, it was my turn. I suggested to the manager that they allow pre-show ticketing (his response: corporate does not allow this, nor are they allowed to open the doors any earlier than 30 minutes prior to showtime) and then asked what to do about the no-seat-in-our-movie situation. He informed me that theater 9 was showing the same movie and I should go there - please note: there was *no* signage to this effect anywhere.

Cue trekking to the other theater, which was pleasantly not crowded - perhaps because they were showing a movie with a younger target market (VeggieTales: The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything). Luckily I hadn't mentioned that we were supposed to be seeing "Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs"!

The trip after that was fine. The movie quality was great, the patrons were great, my kids were well-behaved and enthralled by the antics of the VeggieTales crew, and my stress level went down considerably.


Pros: Inexpensive for tickets (can't beat $1 a seat). Movie quality excellent.

Cons: You may not get to see the movie you originally planned on seeing. You may have to stand in line a good long while for tickets (or if -as I do - you have a small, impatient child, partner up and get one partner to stand in line while the other amuses the kids elsewhere until showtime). You may need (or choose) to forgo concession in favor of a seat. (And that's another thing - it's not like you can leave your kids in the theater - if they're small - to go get food, and if you get up to grab some popcorn you'll lose your seat! But I digress.) Pee fast.

Overall review: OK. I love movies, and even though it was a lot of hassle and stress, my kids loved it.

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