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The Show Must Go On

The carhop made its debut in the 1920s alongside the advent of the early automobiles. It would been forgotten were it not for having a part in the 1973 film, American Graffiti. The concept quickly evolved from customers who preferred to dine inside their car, to initially male carhops that were later replaced with female carhops in order to increase profits. The Sonic Drive-In restaurant is a return to this novelty of yesteryear. More to the point, cinema has catered to the inclination of many people over time. The earliest attempts involved storefronts that were converted to impromptu movie houses. A motion picture was projected onto a wall for viewers who were charged a pithy entrance fee; hence, the name Nickelodeon. This popular diversion led to larger movie palaces (doubling the entrance fee) due to the demand for more comfortable viewing accommodations when longer shows became the attraction. A pattern that has elevated from the mime street artist, to the flea sideshow that was part of the traveling circus, to the theater. Indeed, the theater itself has undergone a plethora of embellishments in order to dominate its market and to stave the onset of competing technology. It has experimented with silent actors, 3D renditions, Dolby sound, CGI animation, IMAX, to name some of the more popular effects. One cinematic event did create a noteworthy following, for all the hurdles it endured. The drive-in theater required mere open land, a wall, and window-mounted speakers to attract moviegoers. This setting appealed to families, teenagers, and film enthusiasts alike. Relive the nostalgia as well as the monumental challenges (nationally or internationally) that drive-in promoters tolerated in order to deliver the show: inclement weather, night cover restriction, and overall outdoor nuisance in order to mount the ultimate movie experience of that era. Was it a sign of the times, a shift from convention, or an industry in flux?

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