A Unique AdventureBy
N A Vincent
My big decision to set foot inside a movie theater after 20 years happened today. This set off a gamut of emotions: A little bit of fear that my eardrums would rupture--memories from Grand Junction days inside the dark cave where "The Passion of the Christ" played, and I went with family and friends. The volume was so loud it hurt my ears. So, today I went prepared: several wads of cotton, which I stuffed in and had to take out when the sound was too muffled.
Secondly, my ignorance of "Today's Movies Operating Procedures". I went this afternoon for the 1:30 showing. I told the ticket agent, a tall man in a suit and sporting a mustache, that I hadn't been to the movies for 20 years or thereabouts. He said, "Go inside those doors, turn right, and into Auditorium 9". Well, inside the doors were Doors number something to ten thisaway and something through something else thataway. I was alone in outer space, wondering where was everyone, as I had gotten to the theater at 1:25, and thought the movie might be beginning already!
Third, Confusion, as I was "Lost in Space". I finally hobbled my cane down the vast corridor, found Door Number 9 and rather uncertainly opened. I don't know exactly what I expected to find, but not a soul was in any seat. I was Queen of the Empty Movie Theater! Had my choice of Seats, did I!
I chose one: the very back seat on the aisle on my left.
I settled in.
I wondered why the movie hadn't started yet, as it must by now be 1:35.
Presently something started: Ads for how enjoyable this theater company was. Then more ads. On and on they droned. Then selected previews accompanying this production. Then more selected previews for this movie, most of which looked pretty boring.
Which brought up a little bit of impatient annoyance to the surface. After about twenty minutes I got up, grabbed my stuff ( denim trench coat, in case the theater was cold, and the 50 lb purse and my navigator and 'protector'--my cane) and hobbled back a mile to the front desk to complain and demand my money back. The sweeper was out front and he got the first blast, which brought the manager, who patiently explained Why There Is No One In The Theater The First Half Hour: Because that's when they run their ads and their previews.
If that is so, why bother showing a half hour of ads and previews, when no one comes to see them anyway, and folks delay until the movie starts? Doesn't make sense to me, although he did explain that it gave people running late to arrive in time for the start of the film.
No one was running late for this showing. I absolutely experienced A First!! I had the theater all to myself. It was a big theater, too. Since I was the only-est Only One, I broke the No Cell Phones On rule and called my daughter Anne while waiting for the last few minutes of How Good We Are to end and found out this is how things go these days, Just relax Mom, and enjoy the movie.
So I did. Except for an employee who came in and right out again to check on things twice while the movie was playing.
And except for a few details which do or don't detract from the movie,
has got it right.