photo by Visit Corpus Christi all other art courtesy of Alamo Drafthouse
Forget evenings stuck in the hotel room, fumbling with the remote. Get out and see a movie in Corpus Christi while enjoying a chef-created meal and full bar of beverages – all from the same seat! Welcome to The Alamo Drafthouse – not your typical movie theater. Here are 10 things you should know before you go.
1Texas-born, Corpus Christi-raised
The Alamo Drafthouse is an Austin, Texas-based theater chain started in 1997 by Tim and Kerry League. This year, the cinema drafthouse celebrates 20 years, 36 nationwide locations and a first theater on the Texas Coast.
Throughout a national expansion, the Leagues have remained very involved in the brand’s concept and “dedicated to keeping the movie-watching experience safe for movie fans, serving quality food and drinks and upholding high presentation standards.”
The Corpus Christi theater will honor this tradition, among others, including a fun and quirky lobby design to reflect each unique theater’s locale. To celebrate the new location’s coastal surroundings, the lobby theme for the Corpus Christi Alamo Drafthouse is: Jaws!
2Dinner and a Movie… on Steroids!
It’s simple: Deliver creative cinema programming – from new releases and blockbusters to cult favorites, special art house screenings, sing-alongs and celebrity-hosted series – and craft an equally unique menu, and you’ve got a killer formula. Plus, the theater features some of the best sound and visual systems in the biz. While the Alamo Drafthouse is hardly formula, you can always count on them to make the public act of movie-going fun… and delicious!
3Programming: A Movie Geek’s Dream, but Plenty of Hits, Too
The typical week at an Alamo Drafthouse might have Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Hidden Figures, La La Land and Split, the new M. Night Shyamalan hit playing in theaters 1-4, with special screenings like a 70mm print of 2001: A Space Odyssey and Girlie Night Movie Party featuring Clueless or a limited anime engagement like Sailor Moon R balancing out the calendar. Who are we kidding? There are no typical weeks! In addition to standard movie releases, the film programmers in Corpus Christi will offer experiences exclusive to this community.
4Adult Milkshakes! Craft Cocktails! 48 Taps! Full Bar!
So, with all of this attention to detail, you didn’t expect an average cocktail menu, did you? The new Drafthouse will offer 48 taps of craft, imported and Texas brew, a full bar, non-booze options like sodas and milkshakes (and yes, there are adult versions of those, too!). On special screening nights, the bar staff may add spirited adult bevvies paired to and especially concocted for the film (think a special White Russian during a screening of The Big Lebowski).
And guess what? The lobby bar is open to all adults. You don’t even need to have a ticket to see a film to hang out in the lobby. Come enjoy the ambience, the innovative drink menu and some chill time with the locals.
5Chef-Conceived and Cinema-Centric Cuisine
It’s a good thing some genius finally figured out that sometimes a spaghetti Western makes you crave a plate of spaghetti! Entire menus here are often dedicated to themes from the film on the screen, enough to satisfy the casual movie theater crowd and cinema buffs alike. Bridesmaids Brunch, anyone?
6A Well-Choreographed Waitstaff
The Alamo Drafthouse’s secret weapon is the crew. The stealthy waitstaff at the Drafthouse takes your order (which you’ve written on pieces of paper and posted on a clip on your table) and magically reappear to fill all your needs – all without disrupting your film experience. In 20 years, they’ve become quite expert at this. How do these superheroes of the big screen do it?
7Celebrities, Tributes, Pre-Show Reels and NO ADS!
From Star Wars (left, Austin pays tribute to passing Princess Leia, Carrie Fisher with a lightsaber salute) to Star Trek (right, Capt. Kirk himself, William Shatner, live at an Alamo screening of Wrath of Khan), the stars come out for Alamo Drafthouse audiences.
In addition to special events and the occasional appearance of top celebrities (and especially those from cult classics), the Alamo has a firm policy of no pre-film advertisements. Instead, they’ve become world renown for their pre-show reels, custom edited to fit with the night’s theme. For example, during one screening in Austin of the 80s cult fave Flash Gordon, the pre-show featured edited clips from the 50s TV show as well as video from the modern soundtrack rockstars, Queen.
8No Texting! No Talking! Exclusive Family/Kids Programming
You may have heard about the Alamo’s strict No Texting No Talking policy. They are dead serious. They do not hesitate to eject patrons who do not follow the rules. No refunds, either. This is an entertainment center geared to adults with a general no-children policy – the Alamo is all about the movie-viewing experience!
But fret not, folks with kids, the Alamo is also sensitive to families and children and will offer special programming – keep an eye out for screenings in the Alamo for All program – so parents can get in on the fun… and of course, to groom the next generation of film fanatics!
9Special Events and Community Focus
Corpus Christi already knows about the Alamo Drafthouse’s Rolling Roadshow traveling movie screen, able to present screenings in all sorts of environments. The inaugural Fiesta de la Flor music festival in Corpus Christi in 2015 featured the Drafthouse’s huge blow-up screen to show the 1997 J-Lo classic Selena during the fest. Well, these folks are from the same family of companies.
And family is a very important component of the mission. The Alamo Drafthouse Corpus Christi as designated CASA of the Coastal Bend as the official charity to be adopted by the theater.
10New Cornerstone of the Southside Entertainment District
Welcome to the “second home to movie fans all over the planet.” This theater’s commitment to providing full-immersion cinematic experiences will fit very nicely into the area surrounding their new location on Staples Street on the Southside – already home to family faves like Funtrackers, Bowlero, B&J’s Pizza and some singles and adult fun like Theo’s Billiards, the Lazy Beach Brewing Taproom, Talon’s Sports Bar & Grill and a number of BINGO parlors.
Gather your posse or your favorite date-night cuddle buddy and plan your trip to Corpus Christi. Remember to add at least one extra day to that calendar for movie night!