By Jim Donovan

By Jim Donovan

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Does the bitterly cold forecast have you thinking about taking in a movie or two this weekend?

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It’s a perfect time to catch all of the big pictures of the year before the Academy Awards are given out. But all that movie-going can empty a wallet fast, so 3 On Your Side Consumer Reporter Jim Donovan has some advice to trim costs.

It’s Oscar season, with nine nominees vying for this year’s Best Picture statuette. To see all of the Best Picture nominees in the theatre would cost more than $75 on average, and that’s just the price of admission — without popcorn, candy or soda.

Movie lovers hoping to watch Hollywood’s best before the red carpet rolls out can do a few things to keep costs down.

First, choose an early matinee. Many theatres even offer morning show times at a discount.

Consider the loyalty programs offered by the major theatre chains, especially for a pre-Oscar cinema blitz. Money spent on tickets and concessions now can translate to points, coupons and savings later. Some chains also offer bulk tickets at a discount through their websites, even bundled with snacks and drinks.

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Finally, before paying for a premium ticket, think about whether 3D or IMAX really adds anything to the movie watching experience. For a film like “Gravity” — a Best Picture contender which also received nominations for cinematography and visual effects — it’s probably worth it. For others, maybe not so much.

For links to several of the big theater chain loyalty rewards programs, click below:

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