Life is full of all sorts of experiences that some of us swear are the best ever.
For some people it involves sports.
Others rave about that perfect place to eat out.
But in America there is a link for most of us in that so American art form — the motion picture theater.
Few Americans don’t have a favorite theater from their childhood where they first experienced some awakening.
The first time you saw “To Kill a Mockingbird” and squinted your eyes when the kids are on the Radley’s back porch trying to see Boo.
Or the shock when you thought Johnny Hooker and Henry Gondorff had both been killed in the exciting climax of “The Sting.”
What about Rocky Balboa yelling “Adrian,” or Martin Brody who comes to the realization that “you’re gonna need a bigger boat” in Jaws?
These are moments that live on with you forever and while you can relive them on your home TV, there is a reason that these and other great memories include the surrounding of a major movie theater. There’s just something about the communal experience, the huge room, the anticipation and then the light, the sound, the experience of being taken into the story.
In this, oh so American of art forms, we live vicariously an adventure, or are tickled out of our problems with a comedy, or experience a love story that goes beyond what we actually experience in life.
It is for all this that we get excited with the news about the Golden Belt Cinema 6, which was announced at Monday night’s Great Bend City Council meeting.
The return of motion pictures to downtown Great Bend, the development of a six-screen facility that will bring more movies to town, the promise of some larger theaters — there’s a reason all that is exciting.
It’s the magic of movies and it’s coming back to downtown Great Bend.
That’s economic development.
— Chuck Smith