Review: AMC Fork and Screen: Downtown Disney

Review: AMC Fork and Screen: Downtown Disney

The recent renovation to AMC’s Downtown Disney location included refurbishing a handful of its 24 theaters to become dine-in experiences, or what AMC calls “Fork and Screen” theaters. Previously, the closest theaters in the Orlando area to offer movie dining were small cinemas showing independent or foreign films. But now this idea seems to have become more mainstream. And a good idea it is. If you are on a limited schedule or don’t have time for dinner and a movie, your dilemma is solved.

The theater is now divided into two sides with the Planet Hollywood side serving as the entrance to the Dine-In. The updates are apparent as one approaches. Gone is the outdoor box office. In its place are some modest outdoor tables and chairs.

Upon entering the theater lobby, the most glaring addition is the full bar called MacGuffin’s (a term coined by Alfred Hitchcock to mean a plot element which catches the audience’s attention) where one can relax and enjoy a cocktail before or after the movie. And the potent potables available at the bar are also available to order inside the dine-in theaters. I don’t know how wise an idea this is. Based on how unruly some film-going audiences can be, I am unsure that introducing a few intoxicated people into this mix would enhance my theater-going experience.

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That being said, the movie dining experience here is definitely a fun addition to this AMC location which has long been a popular theater for locals and resort guests. In addition to being able to select assigned seats when purchasing your tickets (you may also do this in advance online), you are able to dine on surprisingly good food which, in the realm of things, is a good value. While we are all aware of the outrageous prices we pay for candy, popcorn and soda at a movie’s concession stand, for a few dollars more, one can enjoy an actual meal.

As tempting as it is to also review the movie, I will refrain and move onto the food.

The menu offers a nice selection of appetizers, sandwiches, salads, flatbreads, pizzas, entrees and desserts. Think of typical TGI Friday’s fare, and you have a pretty good idea of the type and variation of food available for purchase. Our waiter, Chris, was friendly, upbeat and attentive. He asked if we knew about the fork & screen theaters and if we had been there before. He was quite enthusiastic about the food and helped me choose my meal.

We started with the Crab Rangoon Dip, large Asian type noodles with creamy seafood dip. I would be lying if I said this wasn’t the best crab dip I have ever had. Lightly seasoned with a delicate crab flavor and a hint of cream cheese, the dip was warm and quite delicious. The chips were large enough for scooping generous amounts of the dip and were incredibly fresh and crispy. We were surprised by the superior quality of our choice. This dish was also served with a coconut-based duck sauce which was also delicious, lightly tangy yet sweet. It was hard to choose between dips for our chips. Both were equally scrumptious.

Torn between the prime rib griller and the prime rib tacos, I relied on Chris’s recommendation and opted for the griller. Shaved prime rib is piled high on a toasted Kaiser roll and served with horseradish sauce and fries. While the prime rib was more like roast beef, it was tender and tasty. The roll was very fresh and nicely toasted and lightly buttered, reminiscent of an open-faced sliced steak sandwich. A nice choice. My theater partner ordered the chicken quesadillas; white corn flour tortillas stuffed with cheese and chicken. While the chicken was juicy and the cheese ample, there was nothing particularly special nor memorable about this dish. Served with sour cream and salsa, the compliments were needed to “spice” up a rather boring dish.

The dessert menu was tempting: waffle sundaes, red velvet cupcakes, chocolate spoonful cake. Some wonderful confections and perhaps an option if we had decided to dine on dessert alone. Something to consider on my next visit.

Also available are cocktails from the full bar and the same candy, popcorn and usual movie snacks found at concession stands – at the usual high concession prices which is why the sandwiches and such are a much better value, most in the $10 range.

I have to say that although it may seem that having servers walking around during the movie and taking orders would be distracting and a bit of an inconvenience, it was not. They are pros at what the do and are as discreet, quiet and mindful of the “silence is golden” rule as they can be. We hardly noticed their presence. And Chris discreetly brought us another beverage when ours were empty without our having to ask. But had we wanted anything else, there is a red button on the table to call him if needed.

Perhaps the only distraction was that the servers bring the checks near the end of the film, the part where you most want to pay attention. While I realize the theater probably wants to clear out the audience as soon as the film ends to prepare for the next showing, it does detract a bit from the climax of the movie by forcing one out of the moment and back to reality at an inopportune moment.

The AMC Dine-In is definitely worth a visit.


Food: Better than you might expect. A nice variety and a good value when compared to the prices of your typical theater concession snacks.

Atmosphere: Actually pretty cozy. The seats are roomy as are the tables and there is ample space between the rows.

Service: I have to hand it to the servers. It can’t be easy being so quiet and discreet while a movie is playing, but they did it beautifully.

Tips: Choose a hand-held food. It wasn’t too easy to eat in the dark and perhaps fries, a burger or sandwich would be easier to handle and navigate than pasta or steak.

About ChristineD

Christine is a former Magic Kingdom entertainment cast member. Hailing originally from New Jersey, she has called Florida home since college graduation. Her passions are animals (especially dolphins, horses and dogs) cinema and the performing arts. Currently working as an Orlando real estate agent, she devotes much of her time to raising funds/awareness for Children's Hospice.