Why go out???

Just returned from watching Knives Out at one of these supposedly premium theaters. Well the seats at least are premium. Big, reclining, and comfortable enough. None of the usual crammed in like cattle feel. That's it for the good news. For some unfathomable reason the theaters are numbered but without movie names. We walk down the hall, not one name or even a poster. We weren't the only ones, another couple was roaming around wondering where to go. 

The screen was (Guessing) not even 16:9 and with awful grainy coarse quality which you think well it'll be better for the feature but no, its not! Who in this millennium shows movies in pan and scan? Woodinville! Hard to believe this is the only one- let me know! 

In case you're wondering no, this isn't me being audio/videophile finicky, my wife was complaining all the way home! My projector is Sony, not even the latest, not even 4K, and no Blu-Ray I'm a Pirate Bay/RARBG scofflaw kinda guy, all movies watched off the MacBook Pro (with ECT, and the system is to die for but still....) MY WIFE was complaining! She actually thought it was worse than me! (Well I make allowances, but still...)

What gets me is, I've seen and know how good movies can be. Seen Lawrence, Hamlet, My Fair Lady etc in 70mm. Hateful Eight in 70mm too but that one the projectionist clearly didn't know what he was doing. Beside the point. Cinema should be an experience. A memorable experience. Hamlet was. My Fair Lady was. This one was memorable only in the sense that we will remember not to come back.

Time was not all that long ago no amount of money would get you to cinema quality. But now? Cinema has descended, home theater (IF you do it right!) is actually better. Not a little either. WAY better!

Is it me?Or are they killing the motion picture industry?

Why go out? 
The issue of movie presentation quality is not new, it's been a problem for decades.

I just watched Rise of Skywalker, and the screen was dim and the sound was disappointing.  I can't tell if that was poor music/audio design or the theater, but yeah, my modest HT is a better experience. Watching The Expanse right now. Far better presentation.
Tarantino filmed The Hateful Eight in Cinemascope (? or whatever technically it is, 70mm anyway) and there was a whole big deal about it being released and projected in 70mm which really is a big deal when done right. But as it turned out not only were there not anywhere near enough projectors there were even fewer projectionists trained to operate 70mm.

Kevin Branaughs Hamlet was in 70mm and absolutely stunning. Imagine the best 40K you ever saw, only richer and smoother with better color saturation and detail so unreal the individual gold threads on the epaulets are sparking and Branaugh’s skin pores are clearly visible. My Fair Lady in 70mm, Lawrence twice on two different screens, same thing. But these were all years ago. 1990’s, 2000’s. By the time Hateful Eight came out they couldn’t even project it in focus. No kidding.

Now in fairness the norm before George Lucas, Star Wars and THX was one crappy 12" or maybe 15" speaker behind the screen. Probably no one under 50 will believe it. But that was the norm. So its not like things haven’t gotten better. Just not the last 20 years. And the last 10 seems to actually be getting worse.

Part of it is digital. Same way it killed music, which like craft ales decades after prohibition records are making a comeback. So who knows maybe home theater will save the movies by being a safe harbor for quality. Hollywood and the motion picture industry seems to be swirling down the drain lower and lower.....
...don’t blame digital, it sounds way better than the low res analogue imbedded on old film tracks ever did. As for Hollywood movies: the dreck they’ve been churning over the last ten years has driven me away from home theatre and movies in general. Comic book heroes, remakes and formulaic garbage that appeals to the lowest common denominator. Netflix is offering better content nowadays
I saw lots of first-rate projection and sound quality when I lived in L.A. Of course it depended on where you went but still...it still can exist. To me, though, the problem with the way the movie business now works is that, eighty percent of the time, the theaters only show big commercial super-hero type features.  All the smaller, more interesting stuff is now shipped directly to the premium television channels.  It doesn't help that the new, premium channel television series not only feature the best writing, they possess the best production values.  If you want to see something really good, watch The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. Plotting can sometimes be a bit tentative but the acting & dialogue are wonderful. Still better, the physical production values can only be called magnificent.  Colors are 1950's-1960's rich and vivid. Backgrounds swirl with action and people-on-the-move.  They're essentially choreographed.  The camera is ever on-the-move, as well.