This may seem cruel. This may seem mean. But, I would gladly pay $30 to $50 a pop to not have to sit next to, nor breath the same air, as other people . . .
. . . in the movie theater.
Yeah, I know this type of article has been done to death; the complaining about people who ruin the movie theater experience for others. But with every major website putting up articles, listicles, rankings, and general word of mouth, you’d think people would learn. But they don’t. And . . . I don’t think they ever will.
While this is not an all encompassing list, I think we all know who these people are:
- The asshole who doesn’t turn off their phone, texts, or just answers it when it rings.
- Dude . . . what’s your problem? Did momma tell you, you were special one too many times? With all the participation trophy’s you have in your closet, is there any room in there to get the hint that you are not the center of the universe?
- The parent(s) who bring the inappropriately young kids to the theater.
- Sigh. Okay, aside from the obvious where you chose to have kids, and with that comes certain sacrifices, you . . . you do know they’re kids right? That, maybe they shouldn’t be at the midnight release of the latest movie? Or any theater with other people outside of the latest Dreamworks Animation or Pixar movie? You have heard of Redbox and Amazon rentals, right? Oh. Oh I get it, your FOMO is more important than everyone else’s enjoyment and experience. How dare I.
*A special shout out to the parents who bring the elementary age kids to horror movies and/or anything with excessive guns, guts, sex, and cursing. Just think, you’re guaranteeing future therapists will have patients.
- Loudmouth screen talker dude-bro (who then wants to fight anyone who tells them to be quiet).
- Okay, here’s a truth you should have learned by now: You can bark, posture, and fight all you want. It will not make your tiny dick any bigger. Sorry. Now go back to the gym and continue skipping leg day.
- Loudmouth girls night group (who may or may not have had too much to drink).
- Sigh . . . your empowering, yet limp-wristed high fives, coupled with that screeching wail you call a voice, is a primary reason that chivalry is dead. I’d say your cats will eat you once you die . . . but even an animal knows better than to eat something that rotten.
Here’s a real life example from my own personal movie going experience: Back in March of 2017, I went to see Logan, opening weekend. I tend to see new releases on the Saturday morning when they come out, around 930 AM while my son is home with the wife. I like the early morning because I can avoid most of the crowds. But what happened at this showing?
Well, 30 minutes into the movie, the guy sitting behind me collapses and stops breathing. Seriously. The people he’s with freak. I hopped the seats and gave him CPR until a paramedic showed up and took over. Blessedly, the guy lived, and they wheeled him out. The movie started back up after a small break. I gave my account to the paramedics and checked with the family to see what happened. Now, why did the man stop breathing? Heroin overdose.
Yup, my man didn’t even wait until lunch for some smack. I imagine he got up that morning and thought to himself. “You know what would be fun today? Watching an R-rated, Hugh Jackman say “Fuck” a lot instead of delivering meaningful dialogue. Now, what pares well with a movie that beats the audience over the head with how important it is instead of having a cogent plot. OH! . . . heroin! Definitely heroin. Sure it’s not noon yet, but screw it. It’s Saturday and I deserve a ‘me day’ . . . with heroin.”
Recently I saw Avengers Infinity War with my buddy and his middle school aged son. We three were very quiet and respectful, laughing when appropriate, and keeping any comments to soft whispers and quiet nods. You know . . . like NORMAL people.
There was a mom in front of us with her 6 yr old and 15 yr old sons. She was wearing an off the shoulder shirt so everyone could see her ivy leaves/vines tattoos. Well, she was not missing a moment of the Russo Brother latest Marvel installment. But little Calen was kind of bored.
How do I know his name? Because every 17 seconds she scolded, or threatened to beat, little Calen. But, she couldn’t be bothered to remove him, no no. She made the older brother take Calen out of the theater whenever the 6yr old . . . acted like a 6yr old. And bless ivy leaves momma, she stayed all the way through the credits. Her oldest son? Well, he missed a fair bit.
Now, I know this crap doesn’t apply to every showing of every movie. But it’s prevalent enough that everyone is aware of the negative aspects of public theaters. With that in mind, and knowing that certain people are hell bent on living in their own bubble without giving a rat’s ass about others, what are we “normal” people to do?
We could demand that the theaters enforce public decency practices. But, let’s be honest, what minimum wage making kid would do that? Plus, we’ve all been on an airplane or seen ‘People of Wal-Mart’, our tolerance has created this problem. So, what’s done is done. I think we can agree that no amount of shushing can fix stupid.
Another option could be: that we designate two theaters types? One for people who just want to see the movie? Those who’ll be quiet AND respectful of others (I know, weird right?) And then there can be the . . . other theater, for all the chucklefucks of this world. Let them have a goddamn party in there for all I care.
But, people do frown on that kind of segregation. Which is why I eagerly await day and date digital release via a streaming platform. I reckon a summer blockbuster would cost what, $40 to $50 per viewing? Perhaps less for prestige pieces or more “middle of the road” movies?
And before you say “that’s too much!”, think about it. Two tickets a couple of drinks on a date night costs you what, over $40 already, right? What’s your time worth when you’re standing in line? How about the option to pause a movie to go pee?
I propose we just let the movie theaters die. Hell, they’re barely hanging on as it is. I’m sure that you can still find sticky floors and overpriced nachos other places if you miss it that much. Sure, some may say that newer movies are breaking box office records. But that’s because ticket prices keep going up due to fewer people going to the movies. And why? Well, there are reasons.
So come on, Netflix and Hulu give us this! Maybe if we all tweet to Amazon, and demand digital releases of new movies for rental they could make it happen?. For God’s sake, Jeff Bezos is only worth $110 billion dollars, how’s he supposed to build an underwater city with such a pittance?
“But Gib,” you may say, “you sound like an angry old man, screaming at the clouds! Theaters are fine, and you’re and idiot!” To which I’d say . . . well, yeah. And an asshole to boot. But clearly, you’re not thinking it through. It isn’t just about me and my foolish desire for people to act decent to one another, that ship’s long since sailed.
This is about the little Calen’s and the Heroin Henry’s of this world. Streaming releases of new movies would allow that boy to just go into another room to be ignored by his mom. And Heroin Henry? Well, he can shoot up at his leisure while watching an overrated X-Men movie that people seem to like. Think of them!
I’m not saying that theaters need to completely go away. Some can stay open for those who enjoy a unique experience like the Alamo draft House. And I suppose some could stay open for those who just need “the theater experience”.
But for those of us who can’t stand the inconsiderate nature, and self-absorbed stupidity, of our fellow man, a day-1 streaming service free us from those fools . . .
. . . until we go to Costco on the weekend, read any comment board on the internet, or go to any ballgame anywhere . . .