Have you ever been at Walt Disney World and thought, “Gee, dinner and a movie sounds like a fun night out.” Well, in true Disney style, they have this entertainment option covered as well, with AMC Dine-In Theater.
AMC Dine-In Theater
One of only a handful of AMC theaters across the country that offer the “Fork and Screen” option, I think it’s an intriguing addition to the Downtown Disney landscape.
Vacay is the perfect time to indulge in stuff like that. But for the Disney warriors out there, it’s also a great option for fun multitasking! I mean, why settle for dinner + a movie, when you can have dinner WITH your movie?
You enter the Dine-In portion of AMC from what I think of as the “far side” of the building — the side nearest Planet Hollywood. It’s actually kind of confusing. I’ve gotten lost before. And with parking being the nightmare that it is at Downtown Disney right now, thanks to the construction for Disney Springs, plan for a few extra minutes before meeting your friends.
Upon entering the bright, airy lobby, you’ll first notice the bar area, McGuffins. It’s named for a plot device term coined by Alfred Hitchcock. (See? You learned something new, didn’t you?) The space is bright and inviting, a perfect spot for chilling before your show starts.
And that brings me to the first half of this equation — the movie. Let’s talk a little bit about how the movie + eating thing goes together.
First off, you can order your movie tickets ahead of time, or you can place your order at a kiosk in the lobby.
Once you order your tickets, a screen will pop up for you to select your seats.
Tickets in hand, I set about to explore a bit.
The lobby is more than just a place to wait for your movie to start. You can order a drink or appetizer while you wait, or you can even order a full meal here and skip the movie experience altogether.
Seating is mixed. You can settle in at a place by the bar, choose from high tables and chairs like this, or select regular tables. There are also comfy couches to continue on with the feeling that you’re in an upscale lounge.
The Dine-In Theaters are separated from the rest of the theaters, so it’s easy to find your way around.
You’re advised to arrive about 30 minutes before your movie starts. That way, you have plenty of time to find your seats, take a look at the menu, and order your food before the lights go down.
Soon, it was time to head into the theater. Our server showed us to our seats, and we settled in. The first thing I noticed about our Dine-In Theater was its small size. These aren’t your big, stadium-sized jobs.
So how does this work anyway? Flip up TV tables like on an airplane? Actually, no. You start to get a sense of the set up from these photos. Tables are fixed and have low lights that don’t interfere with your movie watching, but do reveal where your cup and fork are.
Cloth napkins are a nice touch! And seats are big and plush. If you’re worried about comfort, don’t be.
And for those who, like me, need seventeen refills on their drink before they even finish their appetizer, there’s a little “service button” there in the middle of the table to press if needed. I can’t promise that the server will visit anytime soon, but at least you’ll feel like you’ve done something to speed the process along.
The menu is extensive, so let’s take a look at what they have to offer.
Okay…so the food for your Dinner and a Movie Experience isn’t really haute cuisine. Far from it. But there’s certainly plenty to choose from.
To begin, we absolutely lurve the Coke Freestyle option here! You can choose from more than 100 different Coke flavors, and you can customize to your heart’s content!
And the choices are mind-boggling! It’s hard to decide, actually. Note that you don’t get to fill your own cup, so if you want to mix flavors, you’re at the mercy of your server. (That whole mixing flavors thing didn’t go so well with my server, but maybe you’ll have better luck.)
The menu features several Signature Selections throughout. They’re gathered together here, or you can keep an eye out for the little gold fork as you go through the sections.
As I mentioned, you can arrive early so that you have a chance to look at the menu and make your selections. But the cool thing is that you can order at any time during the movie. Just press that call button at your seat, and your server will appear to take your order.
A few Salads kick off the menu.
Appetizers include some single choices, plus a few different platters and samplers for guests who like variety.
It’s interesting to note that there are some better-for-you choices among the other pub grub-type offerings, like the Veggie Triple Feature.
Entrees run the gamut, from Pastas and a Rice Bowl, to Salmon and Beef Tips.
But that’s just the beginning! Because the menu also devotes several pages to “genres” of food. For instance, did you know that there are whole lists of Chicken Tenders to be enjoyed? (That will give you, in a nutshell, the kind of food that’s available here.)
The offerings continue with a list of mostly traditional Sandwiches, plus something called Pizzettas, which sound like flatbreads, or thin-crust pizzas, from the descriptions.
But then, there’s something completely different here that they’re calling Flatbreads, which look more like a sort of wrap-meets-panini. There are also several Burgers, all of which sound pretty tasty.
The menu wraps up with Popcorn, the Kids’ Menu, and some additional Drink Options.
The Popcorn has a steep price tag — $8.50 — but take note that the sticker price includes a free refill. So there’s that. Actually, I guess it’s not all that steep. And there’s your deal for the day.
You can also have a selection of Candy delivered to your seat. Beats missing the big scene in the movie because you have to make a Goober run, eh?
Whew!! That’s a whole lotta menu!
But finally, we’ve made it to the real, live, actual food.
We started off with the Wings Things and Sampler. Billed as “a little of everything”, the platter included Buffalo Chicken Wings, Fried Mozzarella Cheese Sticks, Onion Rings, and House Made Ripple Chips. Blue Cheese Dressing and Marinara Sauce were served on the side for dipping.
The quality was your standard frozen-and-fried — better than your local gas station food, but about the same as what you’ll get at the Costco or Sam’s Club bulk freezer section.
Next, we couldn’t resist sampling a couple of options from the “Tenders” portion of the menu. First up, we sampled the English-Style Fish and Chips. (Is there another style that I’ve been missing out on?)
The Fish was fine, although the portion was a bit small. It was served with Lemon Wedges and plenty of Tartar Sauce. I would hope they’d have Malt Vinegar upon request for fish and chips purists.
But the persnickety part of me did note that these were not Chips — i.e. the thick cut, pillowy potato portions that I consider different from fries. Nope; these are the same french fries you’ll get with any other option on the menu. A minor point, but worth noting if you expect English-Style Chips to go with your English-Style Fish.
Next, I went for the Buffalo Chicken Tenders because, well, I love them!
They came with the spicy Buffalo Sauce on the side, and also included Blue Cheese Dressing. Celery Sticks rounded out the garnishes.
The menu also allows you to swap out the regular fries for either Onion Rings or Truffle Parmesan Fries for an additional charge. I went for the upgrade and enjoyed the dressed up fries alongside my chicken.
The tenders were good. Not quite as good as the Disney version, which I dearly love. But, again, as long as you’re not expecting anything more than frozen-to-fried, you’ll be perfectly happy with these.
We weren’t about to leave without something sweet, though! And surprisingly, there are some interesting, out-of-the-box options. Doesn’t that Pumpkin Spice Cake Sundae sound like the epitome of comfort food goodness?
As the menu suggested, I did order the dessert ahead of time, and it arrived after we had finished our other courses.
And ultimately, I opted for a tried-and-true combination, and chose the Warm Brownie Sundae. They’d advertised it in the lobby and it looked awesome. The final product didn’t look at all like the advertisement, but surprisingly, it was very good!
You can’t really go wrong with this classic in my opinion, but the super flavorful, fudgy Brownie stood up nicely to the Vanilla Ice Cream.
I think that AMC Dine-In’s Fork and Screen is a good addition to the diverse offerings at Disney World. We’ve been big fans of the AMC at Pleasure Island since it arrived — it’s a great place to see the latest films. But now, to know that you can enjoy a movie while eating dinner…well, it’s just a good use of your Disney time budget, I think.
Sure, the food is a bit expensive for what it is, and I think that overall, Disney’s food is better than AMC’s. Still, it’s a fun and unique experience, even if I wouldn’t include it in every visit.
Have you enjoyed the Dine-In Theater at Downtown Disney’s AMC? Leave a comment and weigh in with your thoughts about the experience!