Over the last 15 months we've seen a massive shift in the way that movies have been consumed. With theaters closed for a year or more there has been little choice than for viewers to shift their viewing habits to the television. In fact, many films that were originally produced for theaters in the last year or more have simply shifted to streaming services instead. Such has been the case for Chris Pratt's new science-fiction action movie The Tomorrow War. However, despite his new film's home on Amazon Prime Video, Pratt is still very strongly in the camp that the theatrical experience is without equal.
Speaking with Digital Spy, Chris Pratt sings the praises of the theatrical experience and specifically the way it brings people together for the viewing experience, and focuses them on one thing. While The Tomorrow War may not be getting a theatrical release, Pratt hopes that people will still treat the movie in the same way, because that's how it was meant to be seen. According to Pratt...
You’re guaranteed a certain viewing experience when you see a movie at the theater. I’m a huge proponent of the cinema. I love it, I love it. And especially in 2021 because you literally have someone walk out and say, ‘Turn off your phone.’ In what other part of the world, in what other area do you say a collective group of people takes two hours to do something together with no phones. That’s number one. So the viewing experience, for instance, you could still have an amazing viewing experience watching this on Prime. I would just advocate that people turn their phones off, sit down, commit to watching all the way through. You can do it in the comfort of your own home, turn the volume up as loud as you can, watch on the biggest screen you can and really just allow yourself to be immersed in the story. Because that’s the intention, that was always the intention.
It's certainly true that, when it comes to watching television and movies at home we all tend to be distracted, whether that's by our phones or just our lives. We put everything on hold when we go to the movies in a way that we don't when we watch those same movies at home. But beyond even that, Chris Pratt points out that a lot of the time, we put streaming shows and movies on specifically because we're not planning to pay attention to them. He very bluntly points out that a lot of what's available on streaming just isn't very good.
Chris Pratt has been selling The Tomorrow War pretty hard for weeks, promising that it's a great movie that people will love. He continues to do that here, drawing a comparison between his movie and basically everything else you can find streaming. Pratt goes on...
And I say this respectfully to all of the streamers out there, a lot of the content on streaming sucks. … Everyone’s worn out their Apple TVs and their whatever TVs and every streaming service, Netflix and all this stuff. And a lot of it is not good, but we watch it because you can watch it and flip through your phone as you’re multitasking as you’re waiting out the pandemic. [The Tomorrow War] is actually really good! This is a really good movie that was intended for the cinema, so watch it at home, but pretend you’re at the movie theater.
I'm not sure there's really a way Chris Pratt can say a lot of streaming content sucks and still sound respectful. But that's what he did. At the same time I'm not sure even the streaming services would argue that every single thing found on these services is great.
At the end of the day, it seems clear that everybody appreciates the theatrical experience, and most want to get back to a place where movies in theaters are a normal part of our lives again.