FIRE

AMC A-List Math

I love movies. I want to watch as many movies as I can. I watch a fair amount while running on the treadmill, but most deserve to be watched with your full attention in a large theater. After the pandemic, the only concern is cost. But I am retired with plenty of time in my day. So how can I watch as many movies as I want?

The AMC A-List costs $22.95/mo+tax = $23.64/mo in Illinois. This gives you three movies a week with no blackout dates. You do have to be 16 years or older with a valid ID.

A single Dobly Cinema ticket to Super Mario Bros. costs $19.35 at my local theater. This price includes tax but excludes the $2.59 convenience fee, covered by being an AMC Stubs Premiere member ($10 or less a year). A regular “digital” movie would cost $13.69. You can get a matinee price, a 30% discount, as low as $9.57. On Tuesdays, you can get as low as $6.70.

You can get discounted tickets at Sam’s Club for $9.49/ea. Costco offers two tickets and $20 in gift cards for $36.99, but that is a bad deal unless you really enjoy eating there, or you can get them on an occasional sale for $30.99.

Ticket TypePrice (inc. tax)Theoretical Low Price (Costco $5.50/ea)
Dolby Cinema (recliners)$19.35$11.16
IMAX$18.32$10.13
RealD 3D$17.29$9.10
Digital$13.69$5.50
Matinee Digital$9.57
Sam’s Club Yellow Tickets (Digital only)$9.49
Discount Tuesdays$6.70

This means no matter what, if you see four movies a month at any time of the day, you should be an AMC Stubs A-List member. You are even saving money if you see two movies at a regular price.

The question then becomes, how many movies would I watch in a year?

2023

January – April

  • Ant-Man QuantumMania
  • Creed 3
  • John Wick 4
  • Scream VI
  • Cocaine Bear
  • Shazam 2
  • D&D
  • Knock at the Cabin
  • 65
  • Air
  • Champions
  • Titanic re-release
  • Super Mario Bros
  • Renfield
  • Evil Dead Rise
  • Beau is Afraid
  • The Covenant

Seventeen movies through four months. A movie a week.

May-August

  • GOTG 3 x2
  • Fast X x2
  • Spiderman Across the Spiderverse x2
  • Transformers: Rise of the Beasts x2
  • Elemental
  • The Flash
  • Asteroid City
  • Indiana Jones V
  • Mission Impossible: Dead Reckoning x2
  • Roosevelt
  • Barbie x2
  • Oppenheimer
  • Haunted Mansion
  • TMNT Mutant Mayhem
  • Gran Turismo

There are another 15 movies in the middle sector of 2023, and honestly, five or six I’m guessing I would see multiple times.

September-December

  • Next Goal Wins
  • Pain Hustlers
  • Dune: Part Two
  • The Killer
  • The Marvels
  • The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes
  • Napoleon
  • Wonka
  • Leave The World Behind
  • Ghostbusters Afterlife 2
  • Rebel Moon
  • Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom

It’s hard to say what the third trimester of 2023 will yield, but it questions the need for an A-List the most. However, I enjoy Oscar-style movies, and there are a few exciting films and a couple of blockbusters. I also assume a comedy or two will get thrown in to make it close to a movie a week.

What About Times

The other catch is that, sure, there are a lot of movies I want to see, but do I have the time to do it? I am retired, but I do have two children still in school.

Here’s a summary of my local movie theater’s showings for 04-11-2023:

40 Movies were shown. 27 Digital. 4 Dolby Cinema. 4 IMAX. 4 Real 3D. 1 Open Caption.
20 Matinees (1130-355). 14 Digital. 2 Dolby Cinema. 2 IMAX. 2 Real 3D.

Only one movie (Super Mario Bros.) was not only Digital.

The ideal time would be between 9 am and noon, so the movie would end before I pick them up. However, our local AMC understandably does not offer a lot of film at these times.

11:30 am is the earliest showtime, usually for child-focused movies. For example, a 12:10 pm John Wick 4 isn’t done until past 3:15 pm! Also, on most weekdays during school, films may not even start until 1:00 pm.

The other best time is closer to my kids’ bedtime, but I like to be in bed by 10:30, so I need a movie to start between 7&8.

For 04-11-2023, the only options I would have are:

  • 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm: Super Mario Bros (Dolby Cinema)
  • 8:45 pm – 10:15 pm: Super Mario Bros (IMAX)
  • 8:00 pm – 9:30 pm: Super Mario Bros (Real 3D)
  • 7:45 pm – 10:00 pm: Dungeons & Dragons
  • 8:30 pm – 10:15 pm: Air
  • 8:00 pm – 9:30 pm: Paint

I only have three options if I want to pay the lowest price. But there are options. If I went to one on Monday, one Thursday, and then something with the family over the weekend, I would have successfully used all three of my movies for the week.

Conclusion

Gift yourself three months of AMC A-List starting on May 5 for Guardians of the Galaxy 3. This will get you through August 4th and TMNT: Mutant Mayhem and at least a dozen blockbusters for the summer!


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