I never get out to see movies like I used to. People with their cell phones or incessant talking degrade the theatrical experience as well. What I miss from theatrical however is the sharing of the excitement and the awe from the collective.
I would never wait for DVD for an event movie like THE HOBBIT or IRON MAN 3 or whatever the next JAMES BOND will be. The anticipation and the super fans make the experience oh so much more enjoyable. The audience has no idea how much they are affecting each other, both positively and negatively. A comedy is ten times funnier in a group setting. They say “laughter is infectious” and that is entirely true.
Having a home theater changes the entire psychological “larger than life” appeal of movie theaters. With a 42″ TV or especially my 55″ TV, when some movies do a close up of an actor, they are literally bigger than their face is in real life. Getting in there, that close with the camera makes movies/TV a hyper reality. We can see in their face the emotions or thoughts, even more so than in the real world. Now that this experience is no longer confined to the movie theater, watching movies at home in 7.1 surround sound with booming bass and now large, incredibly detailed screens makes home viewing more theatrical.
But the sharing of the joys, tears, fears, and most especially the laughter will mean the movie theater might never die.