Turning your home viewing into Home Theater

I go to the movies as often as I am able…well as often as I am able to score FREE or discount tickets. Obviously, I still watch plenty of movies at home in the evenings. As such, I try to make the environment as theater-like as possible.

My wife and I share a tiny little cottage so I don’t have one of those wonderful dedicated home theaters that I see so much of on the internet. Still my wife has allowed me to turn the living room into a movie room. many of my friends and particularly my family have contributed to the wall hangings and movie-related tchotchkes lying around.

We have a dual recliner sofa with cupholders and center cubby for remotes. Sadly the cats have ripped the bottom comfy bits out of it and shredded a fair amount of the leather so it is probably next on the list of replacements. I have a nice 55″ plasma television that we sit pretty close to and a soundbar. I cannot recommend a soundbar enough if you are still using television speakers. Mine was relatively inexpensive and the sound is so much better than a television speaker.

Popcorn machine

Our next best investment was an actual popcorn machine from Paramount. I love the smell of fresh-popped popcorn but I only ever seem to want a handful or two. My wife loves popcorn though. She is a saltaholic and I’m the diabeetus man. The popcorn it makes is at least as good as theater popcorn.

Wife loves popcorn

If you get a machine, absolutely get the Great Northern pre-measured packs off of Amazon. They are individual tri-packs of popcorn, coconut oil, and butter-flavored salt and they are perfectly proportioned.


Sadly what I love at the theater are Coke Icees. I looked at home machines but all they appear to have are toys, slushee machines (not the same thing), or full-bore machines that weigh hundreds of pounds and are ridiculously expensive for home use. I tried a slushee cup from Amazon but it’s a lot of trouble for very little reward.

Regal Starlight Stadium 14

We had to drive over to Charlotte this weekend to see my Florida daughter and granddaughter. A fun time was had by all and we arrived early enough to go visit a Charlotte theater I had not been to.

Regal Starlight


Regal Starlight Stadium 14 is an older Regal property that has been partially renovated. We arrived at opening and were pleasantly surprised to find that matinee tickets were only $5 for first run films. We headed in to my favorite part of Regal: The Icee machines. I don’t know why but a Coke Icee is my favorite movie treat.

Starlight seating

Well, my wife was happy. She got a blue raspberry and cherry Icee swirl. Those flavors were working but, sadly for me, Coke was not. Still, Starlight was quite a treat as we finally got to try Regal’s new recliner seats. All of the screens in this theater have been reworked for the new recliners. This means each theater seats far fewer people than it formerly did but it seats them all in comfort, thus encouraging return visits.

Starlight wife


Above is my wonderful wife, reclining in her seat with Butterfinger bites, popcorn, and Icee. The seats power-recline at the touch of an inside button and are quite roomy. My wife and I are large and find them quite roomy.

Starllight lounge


The screen in our theater was oddly small, partial evidence of a retrofit. I think their bigger screens were reserved for Hot Tub Time Machine 2 and Fifty Shades of Grey. We were there to see Kingsman and thoroughly enjoyed it.

I sincerely hope these seats become the norm. They are set up in pairs and you choose your seating when you purchase your ticket. Elbow room on the offside is plentiful but expect to be cozy with your seat partner.