Feature Blogs

Birch, Carroll & Crap: Is That What I Want?


On Friday night, I went to a Birch, Carroll & Coyle Cinema (known to everyone else around Australia as a Greater Union Cinema). What is it with these big cinemas? What gives them the right to do what they do? Here’s an example of what I had to deal with on Friday…


Concession prices are $10.30. This is higher than any other cinema in Brisbane. At the South Bank, Balmoral and Hawthorne cinemas you can get concession tickets for half this price. They screen the same movies too! The Dendy, Palace, El Dorado, Schonnel and AMC cinemas across town will also provide concession prices below $10.


Ticket queues are always long. I had to queue for 12 minutes to buy a packet of burger rings and a large coke. I look at the staff behind the counter and they couldn’t give a shit. They look disinterested, chat amongst themselves wasting time, and can’t deal with even the simplest problem. If I ran this business, I’d see many areas for improvement. When I get served at the Dendy cinemas, the awesome staff often tell me what great films are coming up. At the Centro I always get a smile and the service is speedy. What is it about the Birch, Carroll & Coyle cinemas?


Deals are absolutely pathetic. There is currently a deal where you get a medium popcorn and coke for $9.50. Are you serious? Is this a deal? At the Palace and Dendy cinemas, you get a popcorn, coke and choc-top combo for just $8.50. At the AMC cinemas a medium popcorn and coke costs less than $9 and they don’t even have a deal! At the South Bank cinemas, the same combo is about $5! As a further insult to my intelligence, Birch, Carroll & Coyle offer a part of their “value” combo, a packet of maltesers or m&ms for an additional $4. What value! Such lollies are cheaper than $4 at every other cinema in Brisbane!!!


The point I am trying to make is that you don’t need to go to the Birch, Carroll & Coyle cinemas. They are the most heavily advertised and there are many of them across Brisbane but that doesn’t make them best. The smaller cinemas of Brisbane offer better prices, better deals and better service. Ask anyone. And I plead with you to find out for yourself. Birch, Carroll & Coyle’s slogan is “that’s what I want”. I think they inadvertently left out the word “not”.