AMC's Fork & Screen – Rock Fist Up!

by Eric Melin on October 29, 2008

in Blogs

amc fork & screen entrance olathe Last night was the big press event for locally-based theater chain AMC to show off their newest theater experience, which they’ve titled Fork & Screen. It’s pretty self-explanatory, but there’s a lot more to getting it right than you might think. All I can say is that, considering the high price of concession stand food anyway, why would you not want to eat real food for basically the same price and never have to leave your seat?

The grand opening is this weekend and these first three photos are from the AMC site. Here is a link to all the events, including a free live rock show by The Dead Girls and Pompous Jack on Saturday night. And here is a videoblog from Spiral16′s Whitney Mathews featuring a guest appearance by me!

The Alamo Drafthouse is a great Texas theater chain that’s already doing this restaurant/movie concept (and a boatload of special events and cult movies), but AMC has tweaked it a little bit for the Kansas City market, and I like the changes. Maybe the programming will get more niche as the concept grows to include midnight movies, live send-ups, sing-alongs, etc. It would be cool for KC to support something like that, but you never know…

amc fork & screen theater olathe ksHere’s the deal: Fork & Screen is one whole wing of the AMC Olathe Studio 30. Eight screens are for Fork & Screen theaters, which offer seat-side service from a waiter/waitress, who delivers you a full dinner menu and beer or mixed drinks. You order before the movie, it arrives soon thereafter, you eat on a table in front of you, and get your bill before its over. The ticket price is exactly the same as a regular theater. You must be 18 or over, or accompanied by a parent or guardian.

Cinema Suites comprise the other three theaters, and they cost a little more. The screens are still huge, but the theater only seats 32, and you can reserve a specific seat (unlike Southwest Airlines) by paying beforehand. You get reclining chairs, a swivel table in your lap, and eight feet to stretch out in.

macgufin's bar fork & screen amcI saw “RocknRolla” in a Fork & Screen theater and all I can say is I wish the movie would have been as good as the experience. There is a bar inside the wing called MacGuffins (named after the infamous object that everyone desires in a movie, usually something that has no value other than what’s placed on it by all the film’s characters) that any ticketholder 18 and over (or accompanied by a parent or guardian) can visit before and after the movie. Besides having a full menu of food and drinks, the space itself is pretty swank. The prices aren’t really any pricier than any normal bar either. I particularly liked the displays of macguffins on the corrider in from famous movies like “Pulp Fiction” (the glowing briefcase) and “The Maltese Falcon.” Ironically, “RocknRolla” had a b-i-i-i-g macguffin: a painting that drives the entire plot (and we never get to see), and it still sucked.

The big tweak, the biggest difference in the service that I noticed from the Alamo Drafthouse to Fork & Screen was how quickly your food came out. Since each server has a digital touchscreen, the moment your order comes out of your mouth, the kitchen gets it and starts making it. My mushroom & swiss burger was out in 10 minutes; no kidding. Now if F&S could just start booking live event/movie combos and really thinking of creative ways to use the space, that’d be amazing. People should be able to rent an F&S theater out for a night (like we are tonight at the Screenland) to show whatever they want. That would be really cool.

If I’m paying 12 bucks for a combo popcorn meal anyway, I might as well have a real dinner, y’know? This is especially perfect for me because I often go to screenings straight from work and rarely have time for dinner. Popcorn does not a dinner make, unless you happen to like that sick feeling you get after devouring a medium corn all by yourself.

Kudos to AMC for trying something different and taking a big gamble on people like me who enjoy an entire night out at the movies. It was also really cool for them to have so many free screenings this week so all the locals could see what they are all so proud of. What did you all think? I know we gave away lots of passes for last night on the site …

whitney mathews eric melin amc fork & screen

photo by Ramsey Mohsen

Eric is the Editor-in-Chief of Scene-Stealers.com and writes the Screen Stealers column for The Pitch. He’s President of the KCFCC, and drummer for The Dead Girls and Ultimate Fakebook. He is also Air Guitar World Champion Mean Melin. Eric goes to 11. Follow him at:

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{ 26 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Stacie October 29, 2008 at 8:29 am

This is like the theater at Zona Rosa called the Majestic Theater. It has been there since Zona Rosa opened. So this type of theater is not new to Kansas City. I like the Majestic better as you have your own private table with chairs around it and you don’t have to pay extra. The food and drinks are excellent.

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2 Stacie October 29, 2008 at 8:29 am

This is like the theater at Zona Rosa called the Majestic Theater. It has been there since Zona Rosa opened. So this type of theater is not new to Kansas City. I like the Majestic better as you have your own private table with chairs around it and you don’t have to pay extra. The food and drinks are excellent.

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3 akila October 29, 2008 at 8:39 am

as an avid moviegoer, and AMC lover, fork & screen will be my new movie/drinking spot! i tend to see movies on saturday or sunday mornings, since i have the theater to myself and a few others, but with fork and screen, i’ll be driving my ass all the way to olathe in the afternoon for lunch, a movie, and a few drinks. i had the parmesan fries just b/c they were calling my name from the menu, and talk about delicious! i’ll definitely partake in one of everything from the menu on my future visits.

as far as rocknrolla goes, i definitely enjoyed it. i’m a sucker for Brit humor, and it was chocked FULL. granted, the accents were so thick, i was forced to brush up my lip-reading skills, but i’m a fan. the russian hitmen were HILARIOUS!

thanks scene-stealers!

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4 akila October 29, 2008 at 8:39 am

as an avid moviegoer, and AMC lover, fork & screen will be my new movie/drinking spot! i tend to see movies on saturday or sunday mornings, since i have the theater to myself and a few others, but with fork and screen, i’ll be driving my ass all the way to olathe in the afternoon for lunch, a movie, and a few drinks. i had the parmesan fries just b/c they were calling my name from the menu, and talk about delicious! i’ll definitely partake in one of everything from the menu on my future visits.

as far as rocknrolla goes, i definitely enjoyed it. i’m a sucker for Brit humor, and it was chocked FULL. granted, the accents were so thick, i was forced to brush up my lip-reading skills, but i’m a fan. the russian hitmen were HILARIOUS!

thanks scene-stealers!

Reply

5 Randall October 29, 2008 at 9:55 am

Cinemark on the Plaza has a somewhat similar concept with their VIP room–but I’ve never checked it out. It looks like they have drinks and appetizers rather than a full dinner menu.

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6 Randall October 29, 2008 at 9:55 am

Cinemark on the Plaza has a somewhat similar concept with their VIP room–but I’ve never checked it out. It looks like they have drinks and appetizers rather than a full dinner menu.

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7 Eric Melin October 29, 2008 at 10:13 am

Just to be clear–you don’t have to pay extra at the Fork & Screen theaters, just the Cinema Suites. Where’s the Majestic’s website? I can’t find it. Someone told me last night that they might have closed…

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8 Eric Melin October 29, 2008 at 10:13 am

Just to be clear–you don’t have to pay extra at the Fork & Screen theaters, just the Cinema Suites. Where’s the Majestic’s website? I can’t find it. Someone told me last night that they might have closed…

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9 akila October 29, 2008 at 10:54 am

eric, i think you may be right. the web site is http://www.zonarosa.com, and all they have now is comedy shows…

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10 akila October 29, 2008 at 10:54 am

eric, i think you may be right. the web site is http://www.zonarosa.com, and all they have now is comedy shows…

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11 Stacie October 29, 2008 at 2:35 pm

The Majestic is the theater part and The Improv is the comedy club that is up at Zona Rosa. The theater part they serve a full menu food and drinks. The comedy club is the same. They are still open. I was just there about 2 weeks ago.

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12 Stacie October 29, 2008 at 2:35 pm

The Majestic is the theater part and The Improv is the comedy club that is up at Zona Rosa. The theater part they serve a full menu food and drinks. The comedy club is the same. They are still open. I was just there about 2 weeks ago.

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13 Stacie October 29, 2008 at 2:38 pm

Sorry they have closed theater part. I just called and asked.

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14 Stacie October 29, 2008 at 2:38 pm

Sorry they have closed theater part. I just called and asked.

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15 Kenny October 29, 2008 at 9:01 pm

I certainly think it’s a novel concept and interesting one at that. However, it could certainly be the new bastardization of cinema. How many things to we need to have combined at once to be fully satisfied? I’m not really opposed to the idea, but I just think it’s very indicative of the times we live in. I may undoubtedly like it the first time I try it, but it just makes me wonder when they’ll put toilets in the seats.

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16 Kenny October 29, 2008 at 9:01 pm

I certainly think it’s a novel concept and interesting one at that. However, it could certainly be the new bastardization of cinema. How many things to we need to have combined at once to be fully satisfied? I’m not really opposed to the idea, but I just think it’s very indicative of the times we live in. I may undoubtedly like it the first time I try it, but it just makes me wonder when they’ll put toilets in the seats.

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17 Cindy October 31, 2008 at 10:04 am

Kenny, my husband might possibly be the happiest man on earth if they put toilets in the seats! lol

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18 Cindy October 31, 2008 at 10:04 am

Kenny, my husband might possibly be the happiest man on earth if they put toilets in the seats! lol

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19 cleavy November 3, 2008 at 6:55 pm

This place looks like a blast! I’m a huge fan of Screenland (and pretty much anywhere they’ll let me drink booze and watch a movie in public), but the full menu adds a bit of a draw. Thanks for checking it out Eric!

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20 cleavy November 3, 2008 at 6:55 pm

This place looks like a blast! I’m a huge fan of Screenland (and pretty much anywhere they’ll let me drink booze and watch a movie in public), but the full menu adds a bit of a draw. Thanks for checking it out Eric!

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21 Paul November 29, 2008 at 10:21 pm

I enjoyed my experience there. I checked with one of the staff before going and the logic of combining the two events (dinner & movie) made a lot of sense.
1- with only having to go to the one location I eliminated the stress of carting the family from point A to B (and always having to be stressed with a count down of getting everyone to the theater in time)
2- the saving gas expense involved in a two location outing
3- great food for exactly what I would expect to pay at a family restaurant
4- lastly when I took my family to see a 5 pm show we were out by 6:45 pm, well feed and had plenty of time to go to an indoor amusement park.

All in all you cant beat the logic of combining dinner and a movie, also all most all the staff were very friendly. I plan to go several more times and judge for myself how consistent the experience stays on the positive side.

Reply

22 Paul November 29, 2008 at 10:21 pm

I enjoyed my experience there. I checked with one of the staff before going and the logic of combining the two events (dinner & movie) made a lot of sense.
1- with only having to go to the one location I eliminated the stress of carting the family from point A to B (and always having to be stressed with a count down of getting everyone to the theater in time)
2- the saving gas expense involved in a two location outing
3- great food for exactly what I would expect to pay at a family restaurant
4- lastly when I took my family to see a 5 pm show we were out by 6:45 pm, well feed and had plenty of time to go to an indoor amusement park.

All in all you cant beat the logic of combining dinner and a movie, also all most all the staff were very friendly. I plan to go several more times and judge for myself how consistent the experience stays on the positive side.

Reply

23 Derek December 4, 2008 at 10:26 am

AMC Cinema Suites Trumps Zona Rosa’s location.
This is a great place to see a movie.

I was there last night to see Quantum of Solace, and I found the service, food and adult beverages to be very, very nice.

This is THE way to see a movie!

Cheers AMC…Well Done!

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24 Derek December 4, 2008 at 10:26 am

AMC Cinema Suites Trumps Zona Rosa’s location.
This is a great place to see a movie.

I was there last night to see Quantum of Solace, and I found the service, food and adult beverages to be very, very nice.

This is THE way to see a movie!

Cheers AMC…Well Done!

Reply

25 jason January 31, 2009 at 5:45 pm

This is not new. The warren theaters in Wichita, ks and in Moore, oklahoma do this. The one in wichita does this on all the screens and the other does this for the balcony theater with its more then 85ft wide screen.
The warren theaters trump AMC any day. But maybe AMC is trying to be better.
Next id like to see full THX surround sound and a digital screen at the AMC30

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26 jason January 31, 2009 at 5:45 pm

This is not new. The warren theaters in Wichita, ks and in Moore, oklahoma do this. The one in wichita does this on all the screens and the other does this for the balcony theater with its more then 85ft wide screen.
The warren theaters trump AMC any day. But maybe AMC is trying to be better.
Next id like to see full THX surround sound and a digital screen at the AMC30

Reply

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