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» Cinematour Forum   » Cinemas and Theatres   » Theater Review: Cinemark Century Federal Way 16 (Page 0)

 
This topic comprises 2 pages: 1  2 
 
Author Topic: Theater Review: Cinemark Century Federal Way 16
Mark Campbell
Member

Posts: 437
From: Seattle, WA
Registered: Oct 2004


 - posted July 10, 2007 09:11 AM      Profile for Mark Campbell   Email Mark Campbell         Edit/Delete Post 
Dan, hopefully they will iron out the kinks. One note on the Die Hard print: It might have come from the nearby Gateway 8 that went 2nd run the day Cinemark opened and "gave" all its films to Cinemark.

I agree that the Auburn 17 is a nice theatre. It has side masking in its large stadium theatres!!! (I think the small ones are top-masking). It was also built before the 299 seat rule. Too bad Act III got bought out by Regal. They built some great theaters.

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Chris Utley
Senior Member

Posts: 631
From: Torrance, CA
Registered: May 2003


 - posted July 10, 2007 02:40 PM      Profile for Chris Utley   Author's Homepage   Email Chris Utley         Edit/Delete Post 
Hey Mark: Care to explain "The 299 Seat Rule" for me/us?

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Mark Campbell
Member

Posts: 437
From: Seattle, WA
Registered: Oct 2004


 - posted July 10, 2007 04:22 PM      Profile for Mark Campbell   Email Mark Campbell         Edit/Delete Post 
Chris, one of the lawsuits might explain it best:

http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/cgi-bin/getcase.pl?court=5th&navby=case&no=9950204CV0
(scroll down once on the page)

In a nutshell: If your auditorium has 300 or more seats, you must provide handicap accessible seats in more than on area of the auditorium, IE: front AND BACK. The only way to get a wheelchair to the back of a stadium auditorium is to have an elevator and a rear entrance. Since most chains don't want to pay for this, the largest auditorium in a lot of new builds is 299 seats. There might be some that shell out the bucks. I THINK the new AMC Century 15 and the Grove have elevators and rear access. But the Regal Longston 14 in my parents hometown of Puyallup does not, so the largest auditorium seats 299 people. Count the seats next time a stadium multiplex opens in your neighborhood.

I remember there were a lot of public complaints from the handicapped a few years back that handicapped areas were always down front in stadium theatres, where you have to crane your neck to an overwhelming screen. I THINK that if the auditorium has enough sloped area in front of the stadium seats (meaning you can place the handicapped seats further back) then you can get away with it. I THINK the Arclight might fall in this catagory.

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Ken Layton
Member

Posts: 87
From: Olympia, WA
Registered: Oct 2004


 - posted July 10, 2007 10:21 PM      Profile for Ken Layton   Email Ken Layton         Edit/Delete Post 
The Regal Martin Village 16 here in Lacey, Washington has an elevator for handicap access. Also the two largest auditoriums seat 550 each. It also puts the new Cinemark/Century Capital Mall 14 to shame.

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Richard A Stegman Jr
Member

Posts: 267
From: Calimesa,CA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted July 10, 2007 10:33 PM      Profile for Richard A Stegman Jr   Email Richard A Stegman Jr         Edit/Delete Post 
The Cinemastar Empire 20 in San Bernardino,California has elevator access for the handicapped,as well.

That's why i love it so much.

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Bob Allen
Member

Posts: 79
From: Toledo, OR
Registered: May 2003


 - posted July 16, 2007 07:06 PM      Profile for Bob Allen   Email Bob Allen         Edit/Delete Post 
Dan:

I'm surprised you found the screen presentation adequate. I am personally aquainted with the booth engineer who installed the equipment there as he is also the engineer for the CineMark house in Medford, Oregon from which I just resigned. He said all the equipment in that booth is used (USED!!!) Christie and he was having to rebuild it as he installed it. Some of it is older Christie stuff he's never seen. He doesn't really care for Christie to begin with stating the stuff was originally designed for private screening rooms in the L.A. area. At the Medford house there is a problem with warbling in the sound on several of the machines caused by the basement drum. CineMark refuses to spend the money to replace the part so my friend has the operators putting rubber bands on the sound drum rollers to stablize them. (And the company stresses that perfect screen presentation is their number one priority?)

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Dan Roben
Member

Posts: 155
From: Seattle, WA
Registered: May 2003


 - posted July 16, 2007 10:21 PM      Profile for Dan Roben           Edit/Delete Post 
Sheesh, Bob, what a depressing story! Perhaps it's a testament to the high quality work of the booth engineer that he was able to somehow get an "adequate" presentation from a pile of junk.

By "adequate," I was referring to the fact that there was nothing glaringly wrong with the projection, but I've seen so much better in Seattle's other theaters (AMC, Regal, Landmark and independents). I'm not connected to the business in any way, so I'm sure professional projectionists could find many problems at the Cinemark.

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Christopher Crouch
Member

Posts: 292
From: Anaheim, CA
Registered: Feb 2006


 - posted July 17, 2007 01:55 AM      Profile for Christopher Crouch   Email Christopher Crouch         Edit/Delete Post 
As for the projection equipment issues, I wonder if the use of used/sub standard equipment is related to future digital conversion plans (i.e. a "why spend now when we are going to replace everything in the near future?" approach). While I can understand the longterm financial reasoning, one has to question playing such a risky game, as they could very easily alienate/turn off movie goers in the process (the damage already being done by the time they upgrade). From first hand experience, I know running junk equipment eventually catches up with you, no matter how skilled the tech and/or projectionist.

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Bob Allen
Member

Posts: 79
From: Toledo, OR
Registered: May 2003


 - posted July 18, 2007 12:11 AM      Profile for Bob Allen   Email Bob Allen         Edit/Delete Post 
Yes Dan, my friend really knows his stuff. CineMark is lucky to have him.

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Dave Stambaugh
New Member

Posts: 37
From: Eugene, OR
Registered: Feb 2003


 - posted July 30, 2007 08:30 PM      Profile for Dave Stambaugh   Author's Homepage   Email Dave Stambaugh         Edit/Delete Post 
When Cinemark 17 opened here in 1999 (actually in neighboring Springfield), it had many presentation-related problems. Dirty film, especially trailers and rolling stock, was the rule. The sound systems were not tuned very well and lacking.

The booth is based on the "Christie Package" of that era. They were about evenly split between DTS and Dolby Digital. (One of the DTS houses has been converted to Christie DLP with Real D capability.)

Over time, they've greatly improved their presentation quality, especially the digital sound. The sound is MUCH more dynamic and balanced now, really quite good sometimes. Image quality is generally pretty good and they're able to run prints for many weeks without scratching them and with minimal accumulation of dirt. They ran a print of the first "Lord of the Rings" movie for months and it looked pretty much like new at the end of the run (I saw it).

I will say though that their analog sound has been abysmal since Day 1 and has not improved. Apparently getting those Christies to put out decent non-warbling analog sound has not been a priority.

One thing about Cinemark that you should know is their corporate office DOES pass along customer comments to the General Manager for the specific theater (possibly also the District Manager -- anyone know?). If you fill out one of their online comment cards, you will probably receive a reply from the GM. This doesn't guaranty they will do anything about your complaint (indeed a GM may not be empowered to fix every problem, since for example Cinemark forbids the use of Film-Guard film cleaner in its booths for a very silly political reason). But they do reply.

All in all the Cinemark here is a pretty decent place to see a movie most of the time. It could be much worse. BTW I expect it's serviced by the same tech who handles Medford.

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Dan Roben
Member

Posts: 155
From: Seattle, WA
Registered: May 2003


 - posted July 30, 2007 08:45 PM      Profile for Dan Roben           Edit/Delete Post 
David, thanks for your reply. Maybe there is hope, and perhaps I didn't give them enough time to iron out the kinks. I think I'll give them the benefit of the doubt and head down there again in a few months.

One thing I neglected to mention in my review that ticked me off was that the theater lighting was not dimmed nearly enough, so that ambient light was cast on the screen and washing out the image, especially during the darker nighttime scenes.

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Dave Felthous
Member

Posts: 186
From: Seattle, WA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted July 31, 2007 06:51 PM      Profile for Dave Felthous   Email Dave Felthous         Edit/Delete Post 
Cinemark won't use Film Guard?? That's terrible. What's behind this stupid policy?

When I worked for Regal all films were treated with Film Guard, and it really did seem to help.

As far as customer comments go, at Regal the cards to go corporate, then to the district manager, THEN to the GM of the particular theater, along with scolding comments from the DM. Most of the complaints when I was there were about the endless onscreen advertisements. The GM had to call everyone who had complained and offer some kind of solace. Even though nearly every complaint was out of the GM's control.

I'm glad I'm not there anymore.

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Dave Stambaugh
New Member

Posts: 37
From: Eugene, OR
Registered: Feb 2003


 - posted August 01, 2007 06:49 PM      Profile for Dave Stambaugh   Author's Homepage   Email Dave Stambaugh         Edit/Delete Post 
Cinemark corporate has a longstanding personal grudge against the inventor of Film-Guard and therefore its purchase is forbidden. It's really dumb. However, rumor is Cinemarkers can get F-G anyway if they approach the problem creatively. [Wink]

Note that I'm just repeating what I've read on film-tech.com. I don't have any personal inside knowledge.

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Todd Erwin
Member

Posts: 68
From: Newport Beach, CA
Registered: Feb 2006


 - posted August 02, 2007 01:04 PM      Profile for Todd Erwin   Email Todd Erwin         Edit/Delete Post 
Dave - Cinemark has not been very good at replying to comments submitted on their website regarding problems encountered at both of their Orange County, CA locations. I always make it a point to complete a customer survey online everytime I visit a particular cinema, be it Century/Cinemark, Regal, or AMC.

Regal almost always responds, usually by phone, and as pointed out, the complaint is usually out of the GM's hands (my complaints are usually about cropping issues on a fixed 2:1 screen), but the GM feels obligated to provide free passes and promises to fix the issue (yeah, right).

Century was very good at responding, and even sent me several free passes for being a returning customer at Bella Terra during its first 6 months, despite the (minor) problems I experienced at that theatre. Now, ever since Cinemark took over, I rarely, if ever, get a response or see an improvement.

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Bob Allen
Member

Posts: 79
From: Toledo, OR
Registered: May 2003


 - posted August 07, 2007 11:04 AM      Profile for Bob Allen   Email Bob Allen         Edit/Delete Post 
Yes Dave, the same CineMark booth engineer services both Medford and Sprinmgfield. I visited the CineMark 17 in Springfield a couple of months ago and the booth is really impressive. Hospital clean even down to sparkling floors. Still using the Christie packages except in one auditorium where there is a digital projector (Christie, I think) and they were running a 3-D animated feature. The CineMark booth engineer I mentioned formerly managed that booth before he became the companies BE.

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