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Good Grove/Bad Grove: Pacific 14 Theatres Edition

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There are few things in LA we have such a love-hate relationship with as that Disney-fied shopping Valhalla known as The Grove shopping complex at Fairfax and Third. Therefore, we introduce a new feature, Good Grove/Bad Grove, to celebrate and bemoan the best and worst of the place that gave Century City an inferiority complex and bumped up property values around Park LaBrea. Today's entry: Pacific's The Grove 14 Theatres. There's no question this is a beautifully designed theater with big, comfortable seats, awesome sound and everything LA's many, many film geeks demand. We love the cavernous lobby and the retro marquee out front. We even like the little bellhop uniforms the employees wear (though we suspect the employees themselves might disagree).

What we can do without are the crowds. If you want to see a movie that's even marginally popular anytime near the weekend, you'd better make your plans far in advance. Even still, you'll spend almost as much time waiting in line as you will watching the flick — first the ticket line, then the ticketholders line, where you'll need to arrive up to an hour before the show if you want a good seat.

Remind us again why this is better than the Arclight? And don't say the ticket price. Peak price at the Grove is $12.50, which — when you add in $2.00 for parking — actually tops the Arclight's $14.00. (And the savings for going to an off-peak show is a mere 50 cents — $10.50 vs. $11.00.) Arclight also spares you the endless pre-show of commercials.

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We love you, Grove 14, but you're just not worth it. Sorry, but you're part of the Bad Grove.