Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Silence is Golden ... Seriously.

After a morning of riding my exercise bike and doing some intense yardwork, my sis and I opted to take advantage of Bargain Tuesday* at the local multiplex and finally go see The Hangover. Everyone we know who has seen the movie has raved about it, and we both hated the idea of missing out on a great movie while it was still in town.

(* Bargain Tuesday at our local multiplex involves matinee pricing all day and free popcorn. Yeah, FREE popcorn.)

After running a couple quick errands, we arrived at the theatre with plenty of time to collect our free popcorn, drop $7.50 on drinks (yes, pretty much negating the free popcorn) and find perfect seats -- dead center. (Yeah, I'm one of those.) Minutes before the lights went down, a group of older ladies (I would guess they were in their 50's or 60's) came walking in, entered our row, and proceeded to sit just one seat away from me. I should mention at this point that there were probably fewer than 10 people in the theatre. It was 4:30 on a Tuesday afternoon -- not a prime moviegoing time. There were probably 150 empty seats in the theater, and yet these women just had to sit right beside me. I shrugged it off as kind of odd and settled in to watch the previews, which is one of my favorite parts of going to see a movie. ( Extract looks great, and I can't wait for Bruno!) This group of women next to me continued to chat through the previews, which annoys me, but I tend to let it slide since I realize not everyone holds previews in the state of reverence that I do. Certainly, the conversation would not continue when the movie started, right?


These old bats proceeded to chat throughout the movie -- explaining jokes, making observations, and more. And I sat there cursing my parents for raising me to respect my elders because I just couldn't bring myself to ask them to be quiet. I thought about getting up and moving to other seats, but I didn't want to disturb other audience members nor did I want to lose my "perfect" seats.

It's not so much that they ruined my moviegoing experience. That would be a little diva-riffic to claim that. I still really enjoyed the movie tremendously (if you haven't seen it, do!). It was really more of an annoyance and a continuing sign that we have lost our sense of basic etiquette when it comes to going to movies. We're more willing to chat with our friends, answer phone calls, and more when we go to movies, forgetting that such actions just may disturb our fellow audience members. I don't care that you've been to Vegas before, and I liked the funny line better the first time when Zach Galifinakis said it. If you want to visit during a movie, just wait until it comes out on video and let the rest of us enjoy the movie in silence.

Thank you.

And seriously, what were 60-year-old women doing at The Hangover??


Jen said...

At the movies is not the only place we've lost our sense of basic etiquette. I'd go into details but it just makes me feel freakin' OLD ("Back in my day, people just didn't behave like that..."). Hope your next movie theatre experience is better.

NICKI said...

When I saw Annie, a woman decided it would be acceptable to allow two children to sit on her lap, effectively blocking my view and the view of the little girl next to me. The little girl WAS complaining that she couldn't see and the lady still didn't lose the kids. The mom moved the little girl a few seats down, and I had to lean. Finally, when I moved, the lady realized she was being a jerk. Sometimes, people are very oblivious to the world around them!

Peter said...

Yes, it's truly a shame. It's one of Bart's biggest pet peeves. Theater (and theatre) etiquette has gone away. :(

We've experienced not only what you described, but people have gotten up and run up and down the aisles for no apparent reason (not all of these culprits are children) as well as sit on the steps next to the seats and PLACE phone calls and chat loudly. "No, I'm at the movies. No, it's playing. She said WHAT?"