Is Luxury the Ticket?

In the midst of a box-office slump, upscale cinemas are bucking the trend with cocktails and VIP seats

It's a torpid summer night in Florida, the kind made for watching DVD movies, lying motionless in refrigerated living rooms. Yet here is Eddie Ventrice, 43, tie off, shirt untucked, sprawled in the VIP section of the Muvico Palace theater for a 7:05 showing of War of the Worlds. Sure, he's got a 60-in. set at home as well as a 40-in. flat screen, not to mention a wife and kids. Sure, his ticket cost $18. But here he gets to hang with two buddies and watch killer aliens on the big screen. There's a lobby bar with a martini menu...

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