…but it’s all your fault. You could have prevented it.
Over the Hedge is now in theaters. Families all over the country smart enough to skip The Da Vinci Code will show up to see it. And they damn well should, as it’s a pretty good movie with enough laughs to keep the children happy and a short enough length for the adults to stay awake for.
But what about the rest of us? Those of us without kids… what will we do? We don’t want to see Ron Howard’s snore-fest. We want to see cute little raccoons and turtles talk to each other and go on adventures. I wonder what a turtle would say to a raccoon in real life.
I saw Over the Hedge earlier this week and I did indeed enjoy this film but there were more distractions coming from inside the theater than I could shake a stick at (or toss a grenade to). Parents, are you reading? This message is for you. I’m about to tell a story about my theater going experience. I am telling you this so that you may learn from the mistakes of others. Because remember, history is what we learn from. So think of this as a historical lesson.
I knew going in this screening would be full of kids. It was a promotional screening too. So I had the flea-market crowd of cinema and kids. The worst of both worlds if you will. Minutes after the projector started, I heard little kids’ giggling, mumbling, stuttering, dumb little chatter. “Shhhhhhs” echoed from every direction in the theater. That didn’t stop them. It was madness.
Back in my day (which wasn’t that long ago), if I made a peep during a movie in the theater, my mom would smashed my head against concrete. The parents in this screening were somehow oblivious to their calamaty of a child sitting next to them, shouting. Were these parents zombies? How can they ignore something screaming in their ear, sitting in the chair right next to them?
As the movie continued, the noise became more and more constant. At one point, I stuck my hand in my pocket, hoping that a magic genie left a grenade in there. My mind painted me a picture of me tossing a magical green apple into this crowd just to shut them up so I could watch the skunk and turtle in peace and quiet.
But the genie never showed.
I remember the day I saw Fantastic Four like it was yesterday. It was a full house opening night and in the row next to me sat a rather large father figure with his pudgy son. This kid, Anal Face as I call him, had those stupid shoes with wheels on the bottom of them. This is the kind of kid I found myself wishing one of his fellow brothers or sisters pushed him out of the way on the way to the egg.
A good majority of the film, the masterpiece that it was, Anal Face was rolling his shoes on the ground making the most obnoxious of sounds while his lunchbox of a father sat there with one hand in the popcorn bucket and the other clenching a large soda. Someone in the theater even yelled, “Take your rollerskates outside!” but the father showed no interest in properly parenting his child. And because of this stupid man, a theater full of people already mortified by a terrible film lost focus of a film because of this little bastard and his stupid roller skates.
“Well Mike, why don’t you just lean up and ask the people to be quiet? Dreaming of throwing a grenade in the middle of a packed theater with mostly kids is unethical and sick.”
Two reasons. One, have you ever told someone to quiet it down in the middle of a movie? I have a billion times. It works for a second, then you have to say again later, then again later.
Two, I am not these kids parents. How come people don’t tell their kids how to act in a movie theater? Do your job – if you’re capable of reproducing (having sex) then you should have no problem teaching your kids how to be quiet in a movie theater. It isn’t that hard. They’re only kids. They aren’t going to kill you.
I know little kids aren’t the only problem in a packed cinema house. Teenagers are hell too. Old people talking throughout a movie they find too confusing. During the screening of Good Night and Good Luck I attended, this one dude snored from start to finish. And I couldn’t find the culprit because it was too dark in the theater.
Remember about 6 or 7 years ago when you could leave the house without a cell phone? Nowadays, it’s impossible for many to leave the house without a phone. “What if there is an emergency dude?” Well, what if there was an emergency when you didn’t have a cell phone? Wait until you get home. Or at least leave it in the car. I hate seeing cell phone lights all over the theater, spread out like lights on a retarded Christmas tree.
People are skipping the movie theaters. And it’s not all Hollywood’s fault. It’s our own.
And it’d be a shame if all of you theater talkers, narrators, phone users, and bad parents got hit a bus.
It really would.