Luxury cinemas, an exhibition format that adapts older movie palaces for the multiplex era, are experiencing a transnational proliferation given the rise of middle classes in the Global South. Cinépolis, the fourth-largest film exhibitor in the world, introduced luxury cinemas to Mexico in 1999 and has since included them in its multiplexes around the world. Two notable cases are considered here: the United States, where Cinépolis operates mostly luxury cinemas, and India, where Cinépolis is the only foreign-owned exhibitor. In analyzing luxury cinemas in these contexts, I argue that Cinépolis's strategy depends on creating a modular cosmopolitanism that appeals equally to upper-middle-class patrons across different nations. Yet this modular format focused on luxurious theater design comes at the expense of audience satisfaction. Cinépolis's failed attempts to create a "global cinematic experience" illustrate the challenges facing film exhibition and critical theory in an era of multiplex expansion and media platform proliferation.


Additional Information

Print ISSN
pp. 49-71
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.