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M-89 Cinema

April 27, 2022

  • 392 Cross Oaks Drive
  • Plainwell, MI 49080
  • (269) 637-1662
  • Website

Things didn’t really work out the way they were supposed to so J and L went to Dearborn without me for L’s ice skating competition last weekend.

Those long days sitting in an ice arena are no fun for B so J left him home with me. J’s mom and dad came up from Sturgis to watch him until I could get home from work.

Saturday was pretty much just us boys for the better part of the day. B got up at 6 AM (yeah, I don’t get up that early) and went straight to the basement to play Fortnite. We’ve had some attitude issues so he only gets Friday evenings and Saturday to play Fortnite and he was going to take advantage of mom not being home.

Around 11:30 I asked him if he wanted to go see a movie. I thought it’d be good to get out of the house even if we were just going to go someplace else to sit.

I have never read any of The Bad Guys books but my daughter loves them. B’s just really learning how to read and he’s gotten in to them a little bit as well. The Bad Guys movie opened this past weekend and I asked if he’d be interested in seeing it.

I typically go to Kalamazoo 10 for movies just because it’s close. On this day, I felt like doing something different.

I drove up to Plainwell to go to the M-89 Cinema.

M-89 Cinema is, as the name implies, on M-89/Allegan Street. More technically, it’s on Cross Oaks Drive which is the access road in to the Oaks Crossing Shopping Center right off M-89 to the west of US-131 in Otsego Township. The movie theater takes up a pretty large chunk of the strip mall on the east side of the complex.

The theater is part of the Moore Theatres chain. It’s a seven screen theatre that opened in the mid-1990’s. There’s a pretty large entrance area that looks like it held some ticket windows or something back in it’s hey dey.

Tickets are sold at the concession stand. There weren’t many people showing up early for the 12:30 showing of a kids movie. I went to the concession stand to get our two tickets. A large popcorn, a small popcorn, two large drinks, and a bag of cotton candy. The total for all of that was just $21. As soon as I swiped my credit card, B asked for some more candy…but he didn’t need it. We had enough junk and we didn’t even end up eating all of the popcorn.

It was our first trip to this theater so I was a little confused when the guy working the counter handed me two empty popcorn bags and two empty cups. I looked off to my right and saw huge steel bins filled with popcorn. I figured out then this place was a self serve popcorn movie theater.

The self serve thing is actually really cool because you can control how much butter and salt you want. There’s a door you pull on once your bag is underneath the opening to release the popcorn. The butter tube and shakers of salt are all sitting right in front. Fill the bag half full, butter and salt, fill the bag the rest of the way, butter and salt it.

I love the idea that you can get the popcorn exactly the way you want it. I’m a big butter guy. We don’t do movies all that often so I take advantage when I can.

While it’s self-serve, it’s not free refills but refills are only a buck. If you’re a frequent weeknight movie goer, they have a pretty good bucket special where you can buy their bucket for $4 then bring it back with you and fill it up for $1. That bucket isn’t able to be used on Friday, Saturday or Sunday though.

We grabbed our popcorn and our pop then headed for our theater. It’s slightly confusing because there are hallways to get to the different theaters. A video monitor hanging at the beginning of the hallway points you in the right direction.

The auditorium is a little dated but it’s more comfortable than it looks. This theater was built in the days before stadium seating so while there are a few levels up, it’s much more of a slow rise…not quite the ramp seating that was popular in the era but not quite the stadium seating we’re used today in the larger chains.

The seats are fairly wide and there is a lot of room in between rows. B wanted to sit in the back row so we were up against a concrete wall. Our chairs didn’t recline but the rest of the chairs in the auditorium did slightly recline to make it a little more comfortable.

The Bad Guys isn’t the best movie I’ve seen but it was enjoyable enough. B is the kid who still talks through the entire movie and whenever something big happens yells out, “HOLY CRAP.” I had to shush him a few times. The auditorium wasn’t sold out but we weren’t the only ones in there either. He, being a fan of the books, really liked the movie and figured out the twist long before I did.

M-89 Cinema brings me back to my college days. I used to go to the theater three, four, five times a week. I would always go before 5:00 to get the matinee prices and a small popcorn. M-89 is similar to those types of theaters. It’s not an AMC or a Celebration and that’s what makes it so great. There are times I want the big recliner, the big food menu, and a beer but more often than not, I just want to watch a movie with a bag of popcorn and M-89 makes that affordable while still offering a quality experience.

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