Rise of the Phoenix Theaters

The newly-established local branch of Phoenix Theaters is now open at Kennedy Mall. Operating out of the same location as the recently-defunct Mindframe Theaters, which went out of business this past January, it is one of a small chain of independently owned theaters originating in Michigan, and the first in Iowa.

Photo by Maria Teets — A new branch of Phoenix Theaters is now open at Kennedy Mall featuring reclining seats with new padding in place of Mindframe Theaters, which closed January.

Despite having only a few months between the closing of Mindframe and the recent grand opening, the movie complex has been completely renovated. The marquee has been repainted and outfitted with a new sign, and the outside area around the old ticket window is now enclosed to form an outer foyer. The inner lobby has new carpeting and an updated snack counter, complete with overhead screens showing movie times. Continuing the tradition of Mindframe, alcohol will be available for purchase, a first for Phoenix Theaters. The lobby also features the curious addition of an automated player piano, which provides music and novelty for arriving patrons.

The six individual theaters have also received a makeover, most noticeably in the seating department. Each auditorium has been furnished with brand-new padded reclining seats. True to their name, these seats can be adjusted to several positions, and are also heated, sacrificing high quantity for high quality. The complex’s two Ovation Auditoriums, which are a good deal larger than the others, feature 135 seats apiece, while the regular theaters have roughly 75 seats each. The movie screens have been updated as well, and new Christie digital projectors have been installed. Klipsch speakers are used to produce maximum-efficient film audio.

“Though it won’t be quite the same, (the Phoenix) looks really updated and new compared to Mindframe,” said senior Katie Tooze. “I’m looking forward to seeing a movie there sometime soon. It’ll be a nice addition to the Kennedy Mall.”

Matinee prices at Phoenix are currently $5 per ticket, with after-6 p.m. prices at $8.75 for general admission and $6 for senior citizens and children under 12 years old. Tickets are available in advance online. Extended show times run daily.

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