A movie theater (American English, cinema hall, or movie house), also referred to as a video store, video theatre or the video houses, is a structure that contains multiple auditorias for viewing different movies (sometimes called video tapes or videos) for single entertainment. Movie theaters have been built in almost every major city in the world and a number of movie houses are very popular tourist destinations. Movies are usually advertised in local newspapers and circulars and a movie theater map is usually prominently displayed. The layout of a movie theater is designed to maximize the available space and yet keep accessibility to audiences easy and quick. Sometimes a video store is attached to a shopping mall and offers a wide variety of other goods and services on the same premises.
Unlike a typical indoor movie theater, an outdoor one is designed primarily to entertain people on a hot summer’s day. Movie theaters that open to the sea or green areas such as golf courses have become very popular with the generation of outdoor enthusiasts. Usually there are two types of outdoor theaters: the carousel and the string stage. The former is comprised of a series of revolving carousels that spin around and back to reveal a film. When the film has been completed, the carousel goes back to its original position and the cars go back to revolving once again.
The second type of outdoor theater is the string stage. In this case, there are fixed stages on the floor that the audience sits or stands on. The movie inside the theater then travels up the string just as it does inside a real theater. It also has several audio-visual equipment along with a concession stand that offers food and drink.
The two major components of a movie theater are the screen and the sound system. Typically the screen is made of relatively large (usually more than 100 feet) curved screen. In some movie theaters, projection is achieved by projecting the image directly onto the surface of the curved screen. This technique allows for the full movie to be viewed in the format wanted by the movie.
Many movie theaters also have in built computer hardware. This equipment is used mainly for the receptionist and the lighting. The receptionist is responsible for taking reservations, answering telephone calls, and scheduling the showings of the movie theatres. In addition to taking reservations, she is also responsible for the cleaning of popcorn machines and candy machines. The lighting technician does all of the electrical work necessary to light up the screens.
With the advent of digital movie technology, many movie theaters have adopted projection and screen technology that allows viewers to view the movie on a large screen. The technology basically projects the movie image as it would be seen on a television set. This is referred to as wide screen viewing. Another trend in movie theater technology is the use of Dolby Digital surround sound. This is a digital recording of the movie sound tracks and allows the movie watcher to experience the movie as if they were in the actual theaters.