As Movie Theaters Reopen Teens Weigh the Risks and Rewards

Gov. Roy Cooper allowed movie theaters to reopen Oct. 2 with limited capacity


The Raleigh Grande theater on Lynn Road near Glenwood Ave. is among the theaters allowed to reopen under Gov. Cooper’s order.

Maggie Smart, Assistant Online Editor

Going out to the movies is one of those fun and timeless activities that many students enjoy, yet it hasn’t been permitted due to Covid-19 restrictions.

However, as theaters begin to reopen, students share their thoughts as to whether or not they would feel comfortable returning to movie theaters.

Senior Kaitlynn Wolff describes the circumstances in which she would return to a movie theater.

“I won’t feel comfortable being in a movie theater, even with a mask, until COVID has been mostly eradicated in NC,” Wolff said.

Similarly, senior Scott Waldrop shared the conditions that would allow him to feel safe when returning to a theater.

“It really depends on when they reopen,” Waldrop said. “I can’t see myself leaving the house anytime soon to go to a theater, but maybe sometime next year I might feel comfortable enough to.”

While it seems time and precautions may be needed for some students to feel secure going out to the movies, others find these provisions unnecessary.

“They don’t need to do anything different for me to feel comfortable,” sophomore Mari Zellmer said. “I am completely fine with going like normal.”

Additionally, junior Dylan Bauman discussed why he would like to return to the movies, as well as the adjustments that could be made within theaters to ensure safety.

“Whenever theatres reopen, I would definitely feel comfortable going back, as long as there are one or two empty seats in between groups,” Bauman said. “I don’t think that would be too hard to accomplish since it happens most of the time already. Even if there are not a lot of good movies coming out right away, I would still like to go in order to support some of the businesses that have been closed down for a long time.”

In the meantime, however, students have been enjoying watching movies from home.

“I have gotten used to viewing movies from home,” senior Jaiden Lewis said. “It is more convenient and less expensive. I don’t have to be around anyone else, so I don’t have to worry about whether or not the theater is cleaning properly.”

Whether returning to the movies is safe a month from now or a year from now, students are looking forward to the day they can return to a theater.

Wolff said, “I love seeing movies in theaters, so when it’s safe, I’ll definitely still go for the experience, but movies being released on streaming networks are very convenient for the time being.”