Over the past few weeks, to many regular moviegoers across the metroplex, I seem to have become the bearer of bad celluloid after incessantly reporting on the handful of various local cinemas that, for one reason or another, have surprisingly shuttered their double-doors, apparently for good.
For once, however, I have a bit of much better news: Norman’s AMC Robinson Crossing 6, 1300 N. Interstate Dr.—a theater that quite literally has seen every incarnation of presentation in this business we call “show”—has formally returned as not only a first run theater, but as a first run theater that will give the larger movie-houses in their general vicinity a run for their, at the very least, box-office dollars.
And while I’m not sure that AMC is properly letting people know about it—I had only recently discovered they had unceremoniously re-opened while looking up Fandango showtimes for the new George Michael-based holiday flick Last Christmas—I clearly remember the many reincarnations of this theater in the past, from an AMC second-run house to a shady indie cinema, so much so that I was eager to see what changes were unquestionably made.
After driving by the place sometime that afternoon and giving it a critical once-over that, really, only a former movie theater manager could ever accomplish, I have to admit I was duly impressed with the lobby, at least; the cleanliness, though it soon may turn, was now truly immaculate and enough to buy a pair of tickets for that evening’s showing, for around ten bucks each.
The parking, much like twenty years ago, is still a bit of a problem in the somewhat tightly-wound lot; spot secured, however, we entered in under their bold new threshold with a large red AMC emblazoned across the top. Looking around, I guess it was a good thing that I had paid for my tickets earlier—Last Christmas, as well as many other flicks, had sold out.
I guess patrons—mostly middle aged and older, like us—just love that new theater smell.
The concession stand offered a somewhat expanded menu, offering, oddly enough, about five different kinds of macaroni and cheese, easily competing with the apps menu at the Chili’s down the street—and almost for the same price. Regardless of eats, I ordered my usual large soda, mostly because this AMC had one of those do-it-yourself Coca-Cola Freestyle machines that, thankfully, offered Mello Yello Zero.
My girlfriend, on the other hand, sampled an alcohol beverage from the ridiculously monikered MacGuffin’s Bar, featuring a moderately expensive wine and liquor list; while I would have snuck in a few airplane bottles of Jose Cuervo—I’m a purist like that—she instead opted for a Long Island Ice Tea, served in a plastic cup at a cost of around twelve or so dollars.
Refreshments in hand, we made our way into the theater which, yes, is still miniscule compared to the other picture-shows around town; it was easily forgivable when we learned their lounge chairs are fully reclinable and were mostly heated, making for a comfortable movie-going experience. (They must keep breaking down, however, because we saw an usher lift about three or four chairs up from their set spot to manually reset them.)
The film itself was a knock-out presentation, on-time with great digital clarity; additionally, the aisles were wide-enough to get by without stepping on some dude’s Pumas. Even the bathrooms—fully-loaded with strange science-fictiony hand-dryers—were beautifully sparkling, so much so that I even wiped drops of errant urine off a random toilet-seat, lusting after my old position as an usher, I suppose.
Walking out about two hours later with a burning need to hear George Michael’s “Jesus to a Child,” I have to give high praise to the AMC Robinson Crossing 6, a great re-addition to the Oklahoma City cinematic fold, as well as being a great second-choice for Warren Theater fans with theatrically low self-esteems.