Last week everyone was fixated on the “Right Up Our Alley” drone video that made us all nostalgic for bowling alleys. On Friday night, a VP at drone company DJI tweeted this video of a drone flight through a mostly-empty movie theater in Minnesota, and I don’t know about you but I really miss going to the movies. This video makes that longing about 100 times worse.
According to its YouTube page the video is by SkyCandy, and is a one-take fly-through of Mann theaters’ Plymouth Grand in Plymouth, Minnesota. It was filmed using a DJI Air Unit and Rotor Riot Cinewhoop.
The video is just over a minute long, but the drone takes us through the lobby — after being welcomed through the front doors by a masked theater employee— where people are deciding what to see, and buying tickets “for the 7:30 show,” according to the audio. There’s some very familiar-sounding background music playing in the lobby portion that I couldn’t quite identify, but it felt exactly right.
Next we fly by the concession stand where a couple snags a bucket of that overpriced movie popcorn, then we spin past the bar where we can overhear the bartender telling his patron, “you name it, I’ve seen it,” before heading down a long hallway into one of the actual theaters.
There are so many empty seats in that theater it actually felt a little sad— but then we briefly hear a familiar pre-movie sound: someone forgot to mute their iPhone. Rude! But funny. We end up looking at and then flying “into” the movie screen where guess what’s playing (I thought for one second it might be Tenet, but no): The beginning of the video we’ve been watching. Wild!
For those of us who haven’t been to a movie theater since social distancing started last year, this video is a welcome, wistful reminder of the joys of seeing a film on the big screen. One more thing to put on the “things I’m going to do when everything gets back to normal,” which hopefully will be sooner rather than later.