I usually try my hardest to avoid weekend evening showings at big cinemas. Not only are tickets pricier, but Friday and Saturday evenings are when the high school boys and girls are out in full force with inflated senses of self-importance. They escape the school night strictures to enjoy an activity that they all can share. I don’t mean to generalize, but my experience with high school students in movie audiences has been absolutely terrible. High school boys seem to be of the opinion that every member of the audience cares strongly about their opinions pointless observations.
Two weeks ago I went to a Saturday night showing of Paranormal Activity at a local cinemaplex. It was one of those impulse decisions where I was hanging out with my brother and the conversation went something like – “You haven’t seen Paranormal Activity yet?” “No” “What are you doing now?” “Nothing.” “We’re going.” I had a bad feeling as soon as I entered the theatre and saw how crowded the place was. I relish my matinee solitude. The audience was not that disrespectful during the previews, but when the film actually started they woke up.
During the movie – four cell phones went off. Three were pretty quickly silenced, and the fourth was allowed to ring for about a minute before a young male loudly declared – “whoa, is that my phone?” which was met with none of the lad’s expectant laughter. Anytime a scene of the couple in the bedroom was shown or anything mildly suggestive, the group of youths 4 rows back from me would say things horribly inappropriate (i.e. “Suck his d***” “Show your t**s” “F*** her”), which immediately made me wonder what kind of film they thought they were seeing. There was a young couple in front of us who talked through the entire movie and looked back with annoyance, but were unabated when I asked them to stop.
It seemed like the tenser the movie got, the more the behavior increased, so it could have been the males in the audience trying to hide their fear with pseudo-manliness. Despite the brilliance of the movie Paranormal Activity (and it does hold up on a second viewing), these nuisances ruined the joyous movie-going experience for me.
I was wondering what is the worst movie audience you have ever experienced? What’s worse – cell phones going off or people talking?