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BiggerBoat
04-25-2007, 07:17 AM
If you want to witness the decline of western civilization, just go into any movie theater.

Against my better judgment I went and saw a movie the other day. I wanted to get out of the house and enjoy some time with Miss BiggerBoat. I only see maybe 1 or 2 movies a year in the theater any more, and I was reminded why.

People talking. Idiots resting their feet on the back of my chair. People who act mortified when I turn around and ask them to quiet down and get their feet off my chair.

Seriously, what is up with human beings?

It's not just kids, either. It's children and senior citizens and everyone in between.

Movies were a big part of my childhood. They were part of what inspired me to be creative. Back then, you'd stand out in line in the rain for a single-screen theater, and the movie was like a communal experience. People got involved with the movie rather than the people they came with. They laughed at the right places, they cheered when the bad guy got his comeuppance. At the end, if it was good, they'd applaud. Back then, going to movies was a hell of a lot of fun.

Am I just looking back on things through rose-colored glasses? Has it gotten worse? Is this an American thing?

I will say that there is one theater that offers a consistently good experience: the Cinerama in Seattle. This is a restored single-screen theater, and it takes me back to how it used to be. Problem is, it's hard to justify the 50 minute drive and the $12.00 in parking when the movie's going to be on DVD in a few months.

Man, I am getting to be a cranky old man.

Writer2011
04-25-2007, 07:21 AM
I remember going to movies as a kid--this was a time when Cell phones or pagers didn't exist. Now you see them everywhere...ringing during a movie... people talking throughout the movie and being plain rude.

Yes the movie experience has changed in the past decades and i'm to the point where I dread going anymore.. yet I force myself because there's nothing like watching say Harry Potter on the big screen..you know?

kristie911
04-25-2007, 07:42 AM
It seems people have no concept of rude and the ones that do, don't give a shit anymore. It's the moral decline of our society.

But Aspiring's right...there's nothing like Harry Potter on the big screen. But he might be the only one worth it. :)

Writer2011
04-25-2007, 07:43 AM
Don't forget Fantastic Four :) And Spiderman :) But you're right Krisitie... some people don't care anymore and it's sad.

P.H.Delarran
04-25-2007, 08:04 AM
This irks me as well. I think movie-watching has become so common it's taken for granted. When we watch movies in our own home, we can take breaks as needed, interrupt with talking and just rewind. When we watch a a movie at the theatre, we know it will be out on DVD soon and that we'll get to catch anything we miss.
It's very selfish.
It doesn't just happen at the movies.
I was recently at a play put on at my son's elementary school. We sat behind a group..(family and friends it appeared) who talked and talked and talked. Two of the kids were very loud and boistrous. I asked them politely to be quiet. I shushed them. The one who appeared to be the mom looked at them when I did this, but said nothing. They were quiet for a few minutes and started up again. Next, mom-person (who I knew I recognized from someplace, but not sure where) started a conversation with the grown-up next to her, who repeated everything to the teen next to her, who added her two-cents to the conversation, which was repeated back to the mom-person. and so on. This went on and on. There were no 'ushers' available.
I stood up and watched the play from another place.
I walked into church the next Sunday, and after dropping off my kids for their class, I hear a knock on the door that everyone knows is kept locked. I was already completely down the hallway, and almost late for service, but heck , someone was knocking. I was new there once and had tried getting in that door, not knowing, so why not, I'll go let them in. I get to the door, and it's the rude mom-person from the play! She said thanks as she explained that she was too lazy to walk around to the open door. Hmm, ok, let me clarify, you had me walk back down the hallway when service is already starting to let you in because you're lazy? You mean you knew the door was locked???
Then she headed straight into the kid's service, and that's when I remembered who she was. She was the director of the kid's church for my son's age group!
Grrrrrrr

Okay, off topic some, but thanks for the rant :D

maestrowork
04-25-2007, 08:23 AM
Once at the movies this guy's cell phone rang... and he actually answered it and continued to have a LOUD conversation with the person on the phone. I was so pissed. So I just walked up to where he was sitting and very politely asked him to "either hang up and shut off the phone or I will ask the manager to shove it up somewhere" for him.

Writer2011
04-25-2007, 08:29 AM
Once at the movies this guy's cell phone rang... and he actually answered it and continued to have a LOUD conversation with the person on the phone. I was so pissed. So I just walked up to where he was sitting and very politely asked him to "either hang up and shut off the phone or I will ask the manager to shove it up somewhere" for him.

Way to go :)

I probably would have done the same thing.

Mandy-Jane
04-25-2007, 09:43 AM
Same with plays. I subscribed to season of plays once about 10 years ago, and unfortunately got seated next to the same woman for every single play. Well she laughed after almost every line (even the ones that weren't funny), and worse than that - she didn't just giggle, she laughed so loud, and had one of those laughs that took about 2 minutes to die down. So I missed like, every 3rd line of dialogue. God it was awful! But I couldn't ask her to stop laughing, could I?

Ggrrrr.

Inkdaub
04-25-2007, 11:48 AM
It drives me absolutely nuts. I only go to the movies during the week and at late showings because of it. Even then there is usually someone talking who has no idea that they aren't in their own living room.

Speaking of living rooms...I once had a roommate who would walk in while me and my other roommate were watching a movie and pick up his guitar and play. I wanted to go Belushi on him.

ChaosTitan
04-25-2007, 04:33 PM
A friend and I went to see "Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants" when it came out two summers ago. Cute movie, we both wanted to see it. It was, unfortunately, targetted to the tween and teen audience, so guess what the theater was full of? Guess what was sitting next to us and below us? Constantly chit-chatting and checking their text messages with annoying blue lights?

Ding ding! Anyone who guessed teenaged girls gets the door prize!

Something similar happened when we went to see Superman Returns. Parents and their five year old boy sat right behind us. The kid hadn't a clue who Superman was, or any of the history of the first two movies. So mom and dad decided they needed to explain *everything* to kid, every five minutes. I was so annoyed I wanted to dump my popcorn on their head! I mean, how do you take a kid to see Superman *Returns!* without having seen at least the first film?!?!

If I talk during a movie or play, it's to ask a very quiet, very whispered question. Or comment on something. Or ask "where do I know that actor from?" because it will bug me until I know.

That's why one of my favorite lines from the show "Firefly" goes something like this: "You'll burn in the special hell. The one reserved for child molesters and people who talk in the theater."

It's about as freaking rude as chatting on your cell phone while in line to pay for something (groceries, a thousand dollars worth of furniture, movie rental, whatever!). The clerk is a human being, too, and if they are giving you their full attention during the transaction, give them (me!) the same damned courtesy. If the call was that important, you'd be at home taking it, not buying a candle.

Gravity
04-25-2007, 05:09 PM
Yep, I haven't been to the movies in years. For the above-named reasons. My wife and I have a pretty good TV at home, hooked up to a room-rattling Bose system. Comes movie time, we rent the rascals, pop 'em in, and enjoy them completely.

Bmwhtly
04-25-2007, 05:22 PM
I go to the cinema a fair bit. They have one of those things, I pay 10 pound a month and can see as many films as I like for free.
The trick to enjoying the cinema is Don't Ever, under any circumstances, go at peak time.
The few occasions I've been keen enough (or bored enough) to go on, say, Friday or Saturday night it's been lousy. People not actually trying to be annoying but if you have a room full of people crunching popcorn, coughing, chatting up their dates, it gets irritating.
That's why I go on saturday or Sunday lunch-time. The cinema's full of kids (*Shudder*) but only as far as the lobby, it's usually only me plus three or four other losers in the room.

On a not-unrelated matter: why do they serve popcorn in cinemas? why don't they serve something Quieter?

tourdeforce
04-25-2007, 05:26 PM
I think a theater owners association did a study very recently in order to identify why attendance is down.

The #1 reason was 'talking in the theaters'.

For many, the movie-going experience has becomes very unpleasant thanks to the obnoxious people that come in and talk (to others or on cell phones).

For me, I rarely if ever say a word during a movie and if I do it is quick and quiet.

In addition to the talking, I am quite annoyed by the frequent cell phone and Blackberry checkers who sit next to or near and you turn on their bright screens every ten minutes to check for messages. Very distracting.

Another pet peeve- People that come in one minute before the film and ask you to move. Call me crazy, but we get to the theater 30 minutes before the movie and get a seat in the middle of the aisle approximately half way back in the theater. The theater fills up around us. Then, as the trailers are running or the opening credits are rolling, some bozos come in and ask you to move over so that they can get two or four seats together.

I used to move. And the schmuck who came in late would get the seat that I got there early for. This happened over and over and over again.

I do not move anymore. And it really seems to shock the hell out of people when people ask you to move over and you say 'no'.

Bmwhtly
04-25-2007, 05:33 PM
Tourde, that's the other thing I like about my cinema. They assign seats when you buy the tickets.

tourdeforce
04-25-2007, 05:40 PM
Tourde, that's the other thing I like about my cinema. They assign seats when you buy the tickets.


That is nice!

David Erlewine
04-25-2007, 06:01 PM
I am one of the people who has stopped going to movies due to the talking, blackberries, etc.

I love the "Seinfeld" where Elaine asks the ladies next to her to stop talking and they recoil and say "it's only the previews".

aka eraser
04-25-2007, 06:04 PM
I boycotted movie theatres for about 20 years because of talkers, cramped seats, sticky floors, overpriced munchies and too-loud & too many promos/commercials.

A friend told me about a theatre complex about 20 minutes away. It had roomy, comfy seats he said. I checked it out when LOTR came out. I went weeks after it opened, on a Monday night at 9:00 pm. The theatre was virtually empty.

Aha! My trusty 15-watter flared into life.

I now go to that theatre a few times a year to see those flicks that demand a large screen (like 300). But I'll only go Mon-Wed evenings, 2-5 weeks after opening.

And I bring my own munchies.

Movie life CAN be good again people, but you need to be patient. And have large pockets.

Writer2011
04-25-2007, 06:11 PM
Every time I go to the movies someone has their cell phone on with those bright screens... really distracting. As for the food, yeah it's WAY over priced--that's why I rarely buy popcorn and soda..:) Besides you have to get up so many times :)

What irks me the most though is someone sitting behind talking throughout the entire movie.

dreamsofnever
04-25-2007, 06:22 PM
It's about as freaking rude as chatting on your cell phone while in line to pay for something (groceries, a thousand dollars worth of furniture, movie rental, whatever!). The clerk is a human being, too, and if they are giving you their full attention during the transaction, give them (me!) the same damned courtesy. If the call was that important, you'd be at home taking it, not buying a candle.

*snicker* Try working in a cell phone store. People seem to think that just because I *sell* them, it's appropriate for them to sit on the phone while I'm trying to give them my full attention. At this point, I just continue to talk to them like they're not on the phone at all.

and I concur with all of the movie theater rants. I'm a cell phone addict, but I know how to turn it OFF during a movie. I think people are just becoming very very self-centered and used to getting everything when they want it, so god forbid they be quiet for TWO HOURS and not only allow themselves to enjoy the magic of a movie, but allow others to do so.

Going at non-peak hours is the best thing to do though, because there's nothing like practically having the big screen to yourself.

MajorDrums
04-25-2007, 06:23 PM
What irks me the most though is someone sitting behind talking throughout the entire movie.
Or when someone loudly makes a quip about a scene and the people who hear laugh at the joke, so then that person tries to find every opportunity to say something funny all throughout the movie. That really boils.

MidnightMuse
04-25-2007, 06:36 PM
I feel a rant coming on.

Back when I was young, going to the movies was a big part of my life. My sisters and I would spend weekend after weekend going to one of two theaters nearby - the Roxy and the Admiral. Oh, but they were lovely! Old-style comfy seats, balconies, popcorn that didn't cost an arm and a leg. We'd catch this little foot-ferry across the bay, then walk to the theater, see a good movie, then hit the shops, take the ferry back across the bay, then call our Grandfather (on a payphone, a .15cent call) for a ride back to our house.

Those were the days.

Later on, in summer we'd go to the drive-in and see double features on Friday nights.

I loved going to the movies. And this tradition continued after college, for several years - but with each passing year the conditions worsened. The prices went up, the seats got smaller and less comfortable, and the people got more and more rude with each movie. Kicking seats, putting feet up, bathing in perfume or cologne, standing, talking, throwing popcorn.

Finally, I stopped going. I couldn't take it any more. Movies were coming out on this new fangled VCR thing a few years after the release, so I started watching movies at home. Now and again, something would come out that I figured I had to see on the big screen - and I'd go - and hate it. Once I asked a 12 year old (or so) boy to stop kicking my chair, then I turned back around to watch the movie and suddenly realized that kid could have a gun. I could be on tonight's news: Woman shot in theater after asking child to stop kicking chair. Film at 11.

I stopped going completely. Now movies come out in 6 months on DVD, I have a big TV and surround - and I don't charge myself for popcorn or soda.

There was one exception though. My sister and I went to the opening day, the very first showing, of Serenity. At first we regretted it, finding ourselves surrounded by every cliche'd fan-geek you can imagine, and their parents. 40-year olds who clearly still lived in the basement.

But I tell you, when that movie started, not a word was uttered. We all laughed at the same time, applauded at the same time, held our breaths at the same time, and cried openly at the same time. We were immersed in the film, sharing an experience, completely taken away as a group. It was good old-fashioned movie heaven.

That's the last time I went to a movie in the theater - I don't want to ruin that memory!

Meerkat
04-25-2007, 06:38 PM
Some army buddies and I went to see a little movie called "E.T.--The Extraterrestrial" once, about a million years ago. There were a few ten year olds in the row in front of us, who were talking before the movie started.

"Have you seen this before?" one rugrat asked another.
"Yup."
"Is it true that E.T. dies?"
"Yeah, but he comes back to life."

We had to restrain one of our buds from leaning forward to strangle the little dreamstar...

ChunkyC
04-25-2007, 07:38 PM
What P.H. said above about people taking movie watching for granted is dead on. Kids especially are so used to watching movies at home that they seem incapable of comprehending the difference between the theatre and their living room. Parents who don't teach them this distinction need to have their procreation license revoked.

I have to go to the theatre every week for my newspaper column. Unfortunately for me, I live in a small town and work long hours at the day job, so there's no opportunity for a 'press' screening. Therefore, I'm in there with the obnoxious self-centred imbeciles who talk and kick seats or show up late, not to mention all the gadgets that continually pop up throughout the show like blue gophers in the dark. One of these days I'm going to bring a great big rubber mallet and play whack-a-mole.

The small chain that operates our local theatre even has a trailer at the beginning reminding people to be courteous, but half the twits just laugh at it. The worst part, however, is that the theatre staff don't come in and tell these people to behave themselves.

If the movie studios really want to get people back in the theatres, they should have their auditors look not only for people who are in the theatre without a ticket, but also at how the staff maintain decorum, and threaten to not allow them to run their studio's films if they don't clamp down on those who are rude and disruptive.

davids
04-25-2007, 07:41 PM
I have no problem whatsoever with people talking in theatres or the cinem-I just turn around and shoot em right between the eyes then drag em out and let wild dogs ravage their bodies

tourdeforce
04-25-2007, 07:52 PM
... they should have their auditors look not only for people who are in the theatre without a ticket...


Seems like some multiplex theaters in Manhattan have given up on policing theater hopping. Once you are in, you bascially

The AMC 34th theater checks the ticket at the escalator on the first floor and then you are on your own to pick and chose which movies you see.

The last time that I saw an usher actually checking tickets at the theater door was for the DAWN OF THE DEAD remake. That was sold out and I think many people were purposely buying tickets for other films and walking in to the DEAD screenings.

I would love to see better enforcement all around in theaters.

BiggerBoat
04-25-2007, 08:03 PM
I think a theater owners association did a study very recently in order to identify why attendance is down.

The #1 reason was 'talking in the theaters'.



That's really interesting, especially with all of fuss the studios make about pirating. How about just making movie-going a positive experience again? I think they'd see attendance go up. These 20-screen multiplexes with their tiny screens and their crowds of obnoxious people have nothing over my living room (where I enforce the no talking rule ;)

Toothpaste
04-25-2007, 08:36 PM
I dunno. I won't deny people are rude, but my dad would tell me stories of going to the movies in the 50's where people would yell stuff and throw popcorn at the screen. He himself brought a cap gun to one show and started firing off the pistol to help his screen idol.

Yes I miss the art deco movie houses, but the new stadium seating is a godsend, and the chairs are big and comfy, and the screens are huge. Yes I go to movies where I just want to kill someone sometimes. But also there are some movie experience that are so amazing, where the whole audience are right there together. I think if you've had one bad experience, try going again. And find a cinema that isn't as popular with kids.

(by the way I haven't seen one of those multi plexes with tiny screens in over a decade. I've seen multiplexes with massive screens though. That tiny screen trend ended in the 80's. Yes the theatres may still exist, but most of them are big and stadium seating.)

BiggerBoat
04-25-2007, 08:57 PM
(by the way I haven't seen one of those multi plexes with tiny screens in over a decade. I've seen multiplexes with massive screens though. That tiny screen trend ended in the 80's. Yes the theatres may still exist, but most of them are big and stadium seating.)

Every Regal Cinemas multiplex I've gone to has 2-4 large screens for the new movies and a bunch (around 10) of small screens for older movies and new movie overflow. These are the new theaters with stadium seating and such. If I go to a movie I often end up watching on one of the small screens because I'm there for a less popular flick or an older movie.

Comparing them to the single-screen downtown theaters of my youth, those glorious things with balconies and ornate decor, I'd certainly call the majority of multiplex screens pretty small.

ChunkyC
04-25-2007, 08:59 PM
Yes I miss the art deco movie houses, but the new stadium seating is a godsend, and the chairs are big and comfy, and the screens are huge. Yes I go to movies where I just want to kill someone sometimes. But also there are some movie experience that are so amazing, where the whole audience are right there together. I think if you've had one bad experience, try going again. And find a cinema that isn't as popular with kids.
When it's good, it's amazing. Nothing beats a movie like Lord of the Rings on a fifty foot screen with a couple of thousand watts of digital surround sound pummelling you into your seat. I don't care how nice your home theatre is, even if George Lucas himself came over to THX certify it, it ain't gonna compare to the best a movie theatre can offer.

BUT -- a great home theatre is going to be consistently good, whereas these days that awesome movie theatre experience is becoming increasingly rare mostly because of the behaviour of the people you are forced to share the room with.

ChunkyC
04-25-2007, 09:05 PM
Comparing them to the single-screen downtown theaters of my youth, those glorious things with balconies and ornate decor, I'd certainly call the majority of multiplex screens pretty small.
Heck, two of the four screens at my local theatre seat barely 100 people and only have stereo sound. My cheapo home system with the $49 rear speakers and 15 year old mains sounds better. But the two main rooms seat over 200, have nice big screens and full dts surround systems.

Speaking of the old movie houses ... one of the coolest experiences I ever had was seeing Theatre of Blood starring Vincent Price in a beautiful no-balcony theatre with big marble-ish pillars and red velvet curtains over the enormous screen that pulled back as the trailers started. They even had an ambulance parked out front when you came in, and a nurse with a stretcher in the lobby, all to get you freaked out before Vincent did his thing on screen. What a hoot! The place was a palace and the entire evening was incredible.

Toothpaste
04-25-2007, 09:50 PM
I dunno. Yes home cinemas can be great (if you can afford the technology), but I love going out to the movie theatre. Standing in line with other people who are really excited, sitting in an audience with enthusiastic others. Okay so sometimes the experience is bad, but I go out to movies a lot and I have to say that more often than not the experience is a lot of fun. I like renting movies too, but it is an entirely different sort of experience.

To each his own.

I just think when we mourn all that was wonderful about the past we forget about the good stuff now. Like I said, the old theatres were beautiful and I was sad when they closed down the old ones in my neighbourhood. At the same time I could never see over the person in front of me and now I can. I LIKE the new theatres. They are big and practical. I think it is the one thing that modern times has actually thought through. Yes those stupid miniplexes were a dumb idea, but that's in the past.

Anyway, sorry for hijacking this thread, I know it was meant to be a vent thread. I guess I just really love going to movies, it's my hobby, and when people diss my hobbies I get defensive! Sorry :) !

Nakhlasmoke
04-25-2007, 10:02 PM
I stopped going to movies because for me it's very expensive, and I cannot afford to spend that amount of money to watch something that people are going to talk all the way through.

That's why if I do go see a movie it will usually be at cinema nouveau because the art movies attract smaller, older crowds generally. it does rather limit my choices though.

ChunkyC
04-25-2007, 10:06 PM
Anyway, sorry for hijacking this thread, I know it was meant to be a vent thread. I guess I just really love going to movies, it's my hobby, and when people diss my hobbies I get defensive! Sorry :) !
No need to apologize, T. I too love going to the movies. The first time I saw Jurassic Park was in one of the big rooms, and man o man, when that T-Rex footfall vibrated the water on the dash of the jeep, you'd swear he was coming into the room. Then when the big guy stepped onto the roadway in all his glory, I couldn't believe it. Unless you are lucky enough to have a 100" screen in your home, there's no way it can have the same impact. There's an immersive quality you get in a big theatre that you just can't get anywhere else, at least not yet.

rhymegirl
04-25-2007, 10:24 PM
Most of the time I rent movies for my husband and me to watch on Saturday night. It's cheaper and we get to watch them in the quiet and comfort of our own house.


When we do go see a film at the movie theatre, we go to the early afternoon show or the first movie of the day. Sometimes there have only been 3 or 4 other people in the place. No worries about loud talking, feet on the back of your chair or anything else.

Oh, reading Charlie's post also reminded me of this:
Sometimes my husband borrows a projector from work. I have white walls in my living room, so we project the movie onto the wall. It is almost like being in the movie theatre. Very cool!

Soccer Mom
04-25-2007, 10:35 PM
I have become spoiled. My father grew up poor and often couldn't afford to go to the theatre. He loved movies however.

Now that he's retired and has money, he has built himself his own theatre. No, I really mean a theatre with an enormous projection TV and surround sound and raised seating (in recliners with their own cup holders). He even has a popcorn machine and soda machines.

It's too much fun. And my kids? Waaaaaaay spoiled. They watch movies at Grampa's all the time. Brats. :D

Gravity
04-25-2007, 10:42 PM
one of the coolest experiences I ever had was seeing Theatre of Blood starring Vincent Price

Interestingly enough, in my college days (back before the earth's crust had completely cooled) I was on the school paper, and got to interview Vincent Price when he came to speak. Theater of Blood had just come out, and was one of the films he talked on (as well as how cool it had been to do those Poe adaptations for American International with Roger Corman). Neat, neat guy, incredibly polite and mesmerizing. And tall. Geez, he was tall.

TheIT
04-25-2007, 10:44 PM
Going to a movie on opening day can be a great experience. I saw all three LOTR movies the day they came out, and the enthusiasm from the entire audience was wonderful.

My favorite incident was with LOTR: Return of the King. We had just gotten seated and were waiting for the movie to start when a man in one of the front rows stood, held something over his head, and shouted to the audience, "This is my cell phone. I am turning it off." Everyone applauded. :D

Writer2011
04-25-2007, 11:20 PM
I just got back from seeing the movie VACANCY (good flick by the way) and if you like horror/thriller it's pretty good...

Anywho--There were two people including myself--it was very nice to have an empty theater :)

Toothpaste
04-25-2007, 11:23 PM
TheIT, how brilliant!

The the theatres in London (like live theatre, nor cinemas) have started to, just before the play starts, instead of announcing for people to turn off their cell phones, to simply play the ringing of a cell phone over the speakers. Everyone laughs, and then makes sure they have. It works surprisingly well!

ETA - when I saw the Squid and the Whale I was the ONLY one in the theatre. Kind of spooky actually.

BiggerBoat
04-26-2007, 12:55 AM
No need to apologize, T. I too love going to the movies. The first time I saw Jurassic Park was in one of the big rooms, and man o man, when that T-Rex footfall vibrated the water on the dash of the jeep, you'd swear he was coming into the room. Then when the big guy stepped onto the roadway in all his glory, I couldn't believe it..

I sure wish the rest of the movie had been great, but man that scene with the T-Rex was un-flipping-believable at the time. I was awestruck.



Now that he's retired and has money, he has built himself his own theatre. No, I really mean a theatre with an enormous projection TV and surround sound and raised seating (in recliners with their own cup holders). He even has a popcorn machine and soda machines.

That is one of my dreams. My wife and I were actually planning a remodel a couple of years ago and I spent hours with a architectural program trying to sort out where to put my theater. Turns out we didn't do the big remodel that we had planned on but maybe someday.


Going to a movie on opening day can be a great experience. I saw all three LOTR movies the day they came out, and the enthusiasm from the entire audience was wonderful.

Audiences on opening day of these kinds of movies can be a lot of fun. I did opening day at the Cinerama with my son for all three LOTR movies. The audiences are always geeky and loud but then they are very respectful for the movie itself. Watching the crap trailers with those kinds of audiences is worth the price of admission.

I think there are still good theaters and good audiences. For the most part I really do believe that the movie-going experience has gone dramatically downhill over the last couple of decades, despite the advances in technology.

MidnightMuse
04-26-2007, 01:22 AM
DirectTV has a new feature where they're showing movies on Pay Per View the very day they open in the theaters. So far just a handful of the art-ish movies, but I'll be interested in seeing how far they take it.

Soccer Mom - can I come live with your Dad? :D

billythrilly7th
04-26-2007, 02:29 AM
I only see movies in the afternoon on Mon-Tues.

Occasionally I'll hit a Mon-Tues night or a late night Sun.

That has been the best way for me to avoid seeing movies with the human animals.

It's not your f'ing living room!!!

I just saw Vacancy.

A 2:40 showing in Times Square.

Theater relatively empty.

But one moron, when the tension would rise, would go "Boo" in an apparent effort to scare his girlfriend.

If I had godlike powers, I would have ended him.

You haven't experienced a hellish theater experience until you've lived and seen movies in the zoo called NYC.

ChunkyC
04-26-2007, 03:22 AM
The audiences are always geeky and loud but then they are very respectful for the movie itself.
The audience for opening night of The Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy was like that. Some peeps even came dressed in bathrobes, it was hysterical.


I sure wish the rest of the movie had been great, but man that scene with the T-Rex was un-flipping-believable at the time. I was awestruck.
Oh yeah, I had chills, man. I'm sure I was sitting there with my mouth hanging open catching flies. I think that has to be, and always will be, the defining moment for cinematic CG. Before that, there was always a feeling that special effects could come close, but not truly mimic reality. But after that monster stomped onto the screen, all bets were off.

rhymegirl
04-26-2007, 03:52 AM
If I had godlike powers, I would have ended him.

You haven't experienced a hellish theater experience until you've lived and seen movies in the zoo called NYC.

I thought you did have godlike powers. No?:Shrug:

Inkdaub
04-26-2007, 10:09 AM
*snicker* Try working in a cell phone store. People seem to think that just because I *sell* them, it's appropriate for them to sit on the phone while I'm trying to give them my full attention. At this point, I just continue to talk to them like they're not on the phone at all.


Yeah. I work in a hotel and we get the people on the cell phone all the time. I just ignore them until they get off the phone. If they approach and keep talking and raise their eyebrows at me I walk away like I have something to do.

ChunkyC
04-26-2007, 07:19 PM
Interestingly enough, in my college days (back before the earth's crust had completely cooled) I was on the school paper, and got to interview Vincent Price when he came to speak. Theater of Blood had just come out, and was one of the films he talked on (as well as how cool it had been to do those Poe adaptations for American International with Roger Corman). Neat, neat guy, incredibly polite and mesmerizing. And tall. Geez, he was tall.
How cool! Everything I've ever heard about Mr. Price matches your experience. He truly was one of the good guys.

jvc
04-26-2007, 07:39 PM
No need to apologize, T. I too love going to the movies. The first time I saw Jurassic Park was in one of the big rooms, and man o man, when that T-Rex footfall vibrated the water on the dash of the jeep, you'd swear he was coming into the room. Then when the big guy stepped onto the roadway in all his glory, I couldn't believe it. Unless you are lucky enough to have a 100" screen in your home, there's no way it can have the same impact. There's an immersive quality you get in a big theatre that you just can't get anywhere else, at least not yet.

I remember going to see Jurrasic Park in a newly built cinema and it was mind-blowingly awesome. You could feel the tremours/vibrations when the T-Rex was approaching, sent shivers up my spine that did. Of course I love all things dinosaur anyway and love all three movies. I did hear a rumour they are making a 4th JP movie, does anyone know if this is true and when I can get to see it?

Serenity
04-26-2007, 07:50 PM
I remember going to see Jurrasic Park in a newly built cinema and it was mind-blowingly awesome. You could feel the tremours/vibrations when the T-Rex was approaching, sent shivers up my spine that did. Of course I love all things dinosaur anyway and love all three movies. I did hear a rumour they are making a 4th JP movie, does anyone know if this is true and when I can get to see it?


http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0369610/

This is all I could find so far. I had heard about this too. Maybe something good can come out of it, like the pterodactyls that were flying away at the end of III will think that DC's Capitol building looks like a nice new home... best thing to happen to DC, imho :D

billythrilly7th
04-26-2007, 07:53 PM
I thought you did have godlike powers. No?:Shrug:

I DID.

In Colorado.

But it's non-transferable.

And since I've just gotten to NY, I have to reapply and get my paperwork in and it's a whole production. I don't have the time right now.

Hopefully, after I find an apartment, I'll do what I have to and be reinstated.

rhymegirl
04-26-2007, 08:32 PM
I DID.

In Colorado.

But it's non-transferable.

And since I've just gotten to NY, I have to reapply and get my paperwork in and it's a whole production. I don't have the time right now.

Hopefully, after I find an apartment, I'll do what I have to and be reinstated.

I didn't even realize you're in New York now.

I'll put in a good word with God for you.

billythrilly7th
04-26-2007, 08:39 PM
I didn't even realize you're in New York now.

I'll put in a good word with God for you.

Thank you and yes, I've been back in the belly of the beast for a few days now.

Jamesaritchie
04-26-2007, 09:16 PM
Jeez, do I have different memories of movies long ago. Even when I was a kid forty years ago, other kids talked like mad during movies, and often yelled, laughed, etc.

I have never found any movie audience to be quiet by nature. Sometimes a movie, or parts of a movie, is so engrossing that everyone shuts up and watches, but this is seldom the case.

If I want a deathly quiet movie audience, I'll stay at home and watch something on DVD.

Honestly, I go to the movies pretty often, and I find the biggest problem is usually those trying to stop others from talking. Sometimes a person or two will get annoyingly loud, but for me, this is rare.

The problem for me is that too many people are looking for problems, and concentrating on every little sound other patrons make, rather than concentrating on the movie.

I believe the problem is the exact opposite of what most think. It is not that people treat theaters as if they were still at home, it's that too many expect theaters to be treated differently. People get used to watching movies at home, so when they go to the theater they somehow expect it to be just as quiet as their living room is when watching a good movie with a loved one.

Theaters have never been quiet places in my experience. That's why they crank the sound way, way up, and turn the lights way, way down.

maestrowork
04-26-2007, 09:22 PM
It really depends on the film.... for most movies, I expect people to keep quiet so I can listen to the soundtrack and dialogue. Once at a showing, the husband and wife team behind me kept talking through the whole thing. It was a packed theater and I had nowhere else to go. I tried to tell them to please be quiet and they just ignored me. So I just left and complained to the management -- I got a couple free passes and they also sent someone into the theater to have a "talk" with the couple...

:)

Then again, there are films when audience "participation" are expected and they are the most fun. I remember howling and yelling at showings of Borat!, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, and South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut. These movies deserve to be seen at a packed theaters with a loud audience.

One of the best movies about "movie-going" is Cinema Paradiso. It really was a communal experience. I grew up in an era when silence was observed in theaters, but I do really related to what was depicted in Cinema Paradiso. What a great film, especially if you're a movie lover...

ChunkyC
04-26-2007, 09:44 PM
All I know is, I've been going to the theatre at least once a week for the past six and a half years since I started doing my column, and I've noticed a steady increase in the number of people who just don't seem to understand that their behaviour is inappropriate. Yes, there have always been annoying twerps in the theatre. But at least where I am, they seem to be breeding like rabbits, partially due to the staff in the theatre not putting a stop to it.

jodiodi
04-26-2007, 09:52 PM
We go to the movies almost every week if something is on we want to see. When we lived in Alaska, we saw lots of movies we cared nothing about simply to have something to do outside of the house. Plus, in the summer, it would get into the 90s and there was no air conditioning except in some stores and the theater.

We go to the first show of the afternoon, usually. On the few times we've gone at night, it's been hellacious. We saw the first SAW movie on opening night with a packed theater full of young soldiers (the army post is the biggest thing in that town). I told my husband I wished he could order them to shut up. They were far worse than many of the crying babies and crap.

Also, when we went to see the Kill Bill movies, there were people with their 4 and 5 year old kids, 9 and 10. I'm pretty liberal with my thoughts on childrearing, but even I wouldn't have taken my kids to those movies.

ALLWritety
04-26-2007, 11:14 PM
Hi Guys,

I love watching movies and watch many on DVD but there are some movies that you have just got to see on the big screen.

You think things are bad in the Western Civiliation then pop over to Asia. I am currently living in Taiwan and going to the cinema is an ordeal.

It is so much worse (100 X I would say!!) over here. People over here don't talk to each other but shout very loudly. (It's a Chinese thing!!) Even when they are sat next the person they want to talk to. SO fill up a cimema where everyone is shouting at each other the volume at times hurts the ears. They put subtitles on every thing over here even Chinese movies so they "READ" the movie rather than listening to it. SO everybody is FREE to talk - sorry shout!

The inconsiderate use of cell phones is at empidemic portions. Everyone in Taiwan has a cell phone even kindergarten kids. No really they do - No joke! So not only are they shouting away to their friends in the cinema but they shout to the people on their cell phones as well. They are very inconsiderate of anyone other than themsleves.

They bring in all kinds of their own foods. SO the place smells awful. The food is not just what you get down at your local take away but lots of wierd, strange looking and smelling foods. They leave the trash in the floor. Some of the older cinemas still allow smoking although (thankfully!) these are nearly gone now.

Hey get this! In Taiwan you are allotted a seat. I once went to the cinema one afternoon. There were no more than 6 or 7 people there, so i just plonked myself down anywhere. Yet one Chinese guy came in once the movie had started and came up to me telling me I was in his seat. He showed his ticket and yes I was in his seat. I looked round and showed him too that the cinema was empty and he could sit anywhere. But NO he HAD to sit in his seat. He would not give up so I moved coz i wanted to see the movie and not spend the whole time aruging with him!

Kev

III
04-26-2007, 11:47 PM
You sold me! I'm heading to Taiwan so I can talk through a movie without getting chastized... or maybe I'll just send my kids there to watch their movies...

They still have a drive-in in Sacramento and we'd take the kids there all the time. They could run around, make a mess with the popcorn, talk their heads off and it was still less expensive than a normal movie. My wife and I would sit in the front seat and read a book.

maestrowork
04-27-2007, 12:12 AM
Yeah, I don't get this "assigned seat" thing in Asia. I can understand if it's a packed theater, but if there are only six people in the audience... Chinese people can be so anal about "conforming" that it drives me crazy, and I'm Chinese! :) They do that in Los Angeles, though -- assigning seats -- such as at the Arclight theaters but if it's empty, no one really cares if you move around to find a better seat.

billythrilly7th
04-27-2007, 12:26 AM
such as at the Arclight theaters but if it's empty, no one really cares if you move around to find a better seat.

My favorite movie theater on the planet.

And yes, at least in the daytime, when it's empty, no one pays attentions to the assigned seat thing.

God, I love that theater.

They have this great staircase that I call "The Great Staircase" where you can burn off all the calories you are about to eat.

rhymegirl
04-27-2007, 01:41 AM
I made an old lady mad one time because I was playing kissy face with my boyfriend. We thought it was dark enough in there but I guess not. She went and got an usher and he chewed us out. She said we were "dirty".

Oh well. I guess the movie must have been boring.

BiggerBoat
04-27-2007, 01:51 AM
If I want a deathly quiet movie audience, I'll stay at home and watch something on DVD.

Honestly, I go to the movies pretty often, and I find the biggest problem is usually those trying to stop others from talking. Sometimes a person or two will get annoyingly loud, but for me, this is rare.

In my original post I noted that audience involvement and participation in a movie is great. Laughing, cheering, clapping, etc. is all wonderful. That's part of what I remember as a kid...people getting involved in movies in appropriate, fun ways.

(though don't get me started on Mr. and Miss Inappropriate Laughter who seem to be at every movie. They are unable to discriminate between funny and not funny)

And really I don't have an issue with whispered conversations, or eating popcorn, or candy wrappers, or any of that stuff.

One person loudly talking to another about what's going on in their personal life is not appropriate. Someone constantly asking their companion stupid questions about the movie throughout is not appropriate. Discuss it afterwards, idiots. Cell phone use, obviously, is not appropriate.

In some loud action movie I have a pretty high tolerance for this stuff because the sound drowns them out anyway. But not every movie has the sound turned up to 11.

Then there's constantly kicking your chair, or actually resting their feet on the back of your chair. Is it impossible for these morons to sit without lounging for two hours?

And I'm still convinced this has gotten much worse.

Or maybe I've gotten crankier....

WildScribe
04-27-2007, 01:56 AM
The only really annoying thing that I have had happen to me in the theater is when a little kid has lightup shoes. OH THOSE SUCK!

Other than that, I sit in the front row of the second section so that I can put my tootsies up on the railing without hitting a seat in front of me, and I enjoy the show. Amusingly, the only time I have a hard time watching a movie is when I do it at someone's house. Someone is ALWAYS stomping around, talking, etc. SHADDAP! ;)

maestrowork
04-27-2007, 02:17 AM
Once an old woman turned around and shushed me -- I was talking to my friend... but get this, it was during the pre-show commercials and previews. I almost wanted to tell her off -- hey lady, the movie hasn't started yet -- but I figured, she was just old and cranky.

ChunkyC
04-27-2007, 02:31 AM
A particular pet peeve for me is the dork who gets a phone call in the middle of the movie and then walks all the way up the aisle towards the exit, saying, "Uh huh. Uh huh. Uh huh." One of these days I'm going to stick out my foot and trip the goof so he falls flat on his face, see how much fun his stupid phone is when it's jammed up his left nostril.

Can you tell I have to go review the new Nick Cage movie tomorrow night? ;)

maestrowork
04-27-2007, 02:46 AM
Oh what fun, Charlie.

I just wish Cage would stop making crap...

jvc
04-27-2007, 03:04 AM
I actually like Nick Cage films and tend to want to watch anything he is in. I'm the same with Anthony Hopkins, if he's in a film you know it will be good. Charlie, I envy you, I want to go and see the new Nick Cage film, and you get to write a review as well.

Actually one his films I saw in the cinema, Lord of War, there were three teenagers sitting a couple of rows in front of us. I was about to get up and give them a piece of my mind, when they got told to leave by an usher. Shame really, cause I had a few good insults I wanted to use.

maestrowork
04-27-2007, 03:07 AM
Hey, I write reviews, too... There's nothing quite like getting paid to see movies... :)

Will Lavender
04-27-2007, 03:10 AM
Ever hear Bill Maher's story about talking in the theater?

Some years ago, Maher was watching a movie with a girlfriend. Some loud, abnoxious youths began to chatter in the back row. Maher at first tried to tune them out, but they became increasingly louder. After a few minutes, he finally turned around and shouted, "Would you shut the FUCK up?"

The kids got silent.

Afterward, however, they followed him the parking lot and jumped him. The beating Maher took nearly killed him.

Marlys
04-27-2007, 03:10 AM
Ever since my kid was old enough to bring to the movies, we've had a little ritual: just before the film starts, I turn to him and say, "When is it okay to talk during a movie?" and he replies, "When I'm on fire."

Not only is it a reminder to him, but it tends to get the point across to the people around us. :D

Speaking of fire, I'd never go back to the past for movie-going, because they used to allow smoking in theaters. Ugh.

ChunkyC
04-27-2007, 04:51 AM
Afterward, however, they followed him the parking lot and jumped him. The beating Maher took nearly killed him.
I hope those arsewipes are currently in prison discovering the joy of being an axe murderer's plaything.

"When is it okay to talk during a movie?" and he replies, "When I'm on fire."
I like that!

Joe270
04-27-2007, 05:45 AM
When Star Wars first came out a classmate of mine just insisted that we had to see this film. Sci-fi was pretty terrible at the time, but a group of about ten of us joined him.

This was an old-style theater with a balcony, a huge audience.

When the text was scrolling at the beginning of the film, he yells out:

"Darth Vader gets away at the end."

It rained popcorn, ju-ju bees, and mostly full sodas down on us. He only wanted us there so he had a chance to get out alive.

III
04-27-2007, 05:29 PM
[quote=Joe270;1294765]
When the text was scrolling at the beginning of the film, he yells out:

"Darth Vader gets away at the end."
[quote]

That reminds me of another pet peeve - the detective couple who thinks they need to solve the mystery together throughout the movie. (Stage whisper) "I think he's really that other guy." "No, cuz remember, they were in the same room together." "But maybe he was imagining it."

Of course it always reminds me of the classic Simpsons episode where Homer blathered throughout the movie.
Homer: "I think that guy's a spy."
Marge: "Well of course he's a spy. You just saw him go through spy school!"

Kentuk
04-28-2007, 10:23 AM
Ah I remember the good old days, was twelve and the corps of cadets used the dark anonymity of the theater for high spirits and raunchous hilarity.

Joe270
04-28-2007, 10:54 AM
Another experience, had two black ladies in front of my wife and I. I was ticked off at the beginning of the flick, but the film was absolutely horrible.

As the movie slugged on, their comments were wonderful.

"oh, baby, not that, no, sugar." The only reason we stayed was to listen to their hilarious comments. A wonderful experience.

Almost as good as "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" in the 70s, before it got too rehearsed.

Toxic_Waste
04-29-2007, 06:40 AM
Somebody mentioned inappropriate laughter during a movie. I am one of those people who seems to find certain scenes really funny when hardly anyone else does, but I laugh silently just to keep things on an even keel.

What I just can't figure are all the cell phone conversations going on during a movie.