Jump to content

Sign up for a free account to remove the pop-up ads

Signing up for an account is fast and free. As a member you can join in the conversation, enter contests and remove the pop-up ads that guests get. Click here to create your free account.


The horror! The horror! A rant about morons at the movies.

  • You cannot start a new topic
  • Please log in to reply
66 replies to this topic

#1 of 67 OFFLINE   Aaron Reynolds

Aaron Reynolds


  • 1,714 posts
  • Join Date: Feb 06 2001
  • Real Name:Aaron Reynolds
  • LocationOttawa, Ontario, Canada

Posted August 30 2001 - 08:19 AM

So, I finally get off my butt and go to see Apocalypse Now Redux, and I end up nearly killing a guy. It was Tuesday, at The Eglinton in Toronto. During the opening montage, the moron next to me gets out his phone, starts dialing and then starts talking! He didn't answer the phone, which would have been bad enough; he actually made a call during the opening of the film. Guess how long he stayed on the phone? All the way through the opening, through Sheen's narration, all the way up to breaking the mirror! By that time I was throwing handfuls of greasy popcorn at him to try to get him to shut up, but all he would do is look at me like I was out of my mind. After he hung up his phone he complained loudly to the woman he was with about how he had popcorn all over him. I seriously considered leaving and getting someone to kick him out of the theatre while he was on the phone, but that would only have compounded the problem for the rest of the audience: I was in the middle of a row, and The Eglinton's seating is not on a particularly steep angle, so I'd be standing up in front of everyone. I also considered leaving and asking for my money back, which I should have done, since I couldn't get into the film after that...it would have been okay, but phones belonging to other selfish morons rang a good dozen times over the course of the film, each ring bringing back that feeling of hatred and pulling me out of Apocalypse Now. The guy also got up and walked through the row three times during the film (to do what, I don't know, maybe make more calls without getting popcorn down his shirt), and he started to leave a fourth time just as that Doors song started playing again during the film's climax, but the woman he was with told him to wait because it was almost over. I felt really bad for her that she had to come to the movies with such an asshole. I had to force myself to leave after the film in the opposite direction out of the row so that I wouldn't know where the guy was once we got outside -- I was afraid that I'd jump him and demand that he give me back the six dollars I had just wasted on being angry at him for three and a half hours, plus another four bucks for the popcorn I threw at him. What should or could I have done? Experiences like this are souring me on the whole movie theatre thing, and the good little theatres that were for the most part free of morons have been closing at an alarming rate here in Toronto.
My Twitter account: @aaronreynolds

My dumb Star Trek Emoticons Twitter account: @TrekMoticons

More pictures of Theatre Reynolds, children and nonsense: http://instagram.com/aaronreynolds

#2 of 67 OFFLINE   Kimmo Jaskari

Kimmo Jaskari


  • 1,529 posts
  • Join Date: Feb 27 2000

Posted August 30 2001 - 08:45 AM

I love mobile phones. They are great when you need to reach someone urgently, when planning to meet someone in a place you don't really know, when you are in trouble for some reason and need help... People who use them in cinemas should be neutered to make sure their genes don't contaminate the gene pool. Theaters need to install cell phone jammers. That's the only thing that will keep these inconsiderate idiots from using their phones throughout the movie, destroying the experience for those of us who want to actually see the movie. ------------------ /Kimmo
"If we do happen to step on a mine, Sir, what do we do?"
"Normal procedure, Lieutenant, is to jump 200 feet in the air and scatter oneself over a wide area." -- "BlackAdder 4"

#3 of 67 OFFLINE   Rob_C


    Stunt Coordinator

  • 138 posts
  • Join Date: Sep 11 2000

Posted August 30 2001 - 09:09 AM

I can imagine what you went through. I've had to deal with idiots on cell phones during movies myself but at least the movie was only 90 min and not 3 1/2 hrs. I would have been pretty heated after 3 1/2 hrs. It really got to me during a 90 min movie. People have no respect. That cell phone jammer idea is indeed a great one.

#4 of 67 OFFLINE   MichaelPe



  • 1,118 posts
  • Join Date: Feb 22 1999

Posted August 30 2001 - 09:19 AM


Theaters need to install cell phone jammers.


Unfortunately, these devices will also prevent on-call doctors from receiving urgent pages. Also, it won't solve the problem of people who talk during movies.

I think that the best way to solve this problem would be for movie theaters to impose a stricter policy. In other words, "If you make any sound whatsoever, you will be asked to leave and pay a fine." I know that this is a little extreme, but these people are preventing everyone else from enjoying the movie.

#5 of 67 OFFLINE   MickeS



  • 5,065 posts
  • Join Date: Jul 24 2000

Posted August 30 2001 - 09:23 AM

I think you should have told him to get off the phone first. But I know how you felt. /Mike

#6 of 67 OFFLINE   RobertR


    Lead Actor

  • 9,655 posts
  • Join Date: Dec 19 1998

Posted August 30 2001 - 09:24 AM

I think the problem is even more fundamental than that. Things in the culture have degraded to the point where too many people simply have no shame about various things, such as being rude in public. I think that's what needs to be changed.

#7 of 67 OFFLINE   Howard Williams

Howard Williams

    Supporting Actor

  • 522 posts
  • Join Date: Mar 07 2001

Posted August 30 2001 - 09:26 AM

Aaron, I don't know about Toronto but in America, you never know who you're messin with. You never know just how crazy that other guy is or who he's with, so it's best to avoid any type of confrontation with that type of person if at all possible. I'm a pretty big guy. Intimidating to some even, although I'm probably the biggest teddy bear you've ever seen. Especially when I'm out with the wife and or kids (who could get hurt and whom I'm trying to set an example for), I may comment on someone behavior to my party but very rarely do I escalate the situation by participating in their stupidity. Phones are a problem. I think a posted reminder at the main theater entrance and then again at each individual theater to "Please disable ringer on all mobile phones. Vibrate mode only" would be sufficient. This would solve 99% of the problems. The other 1%......??? Get a refund. ------------------ "Nobody move a muscle." GROOOWLLLLL ! "AHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!"
"I am not what I am"

#8 of 67 OFFLINE   Aaron Reynolds

Aaron Reynolds


  • 1,714 posts
  • Join Date: Feb 06 2001
  • Real Name:Aaron Reynolds
  • LocationOttawa, Ontario, Canada

Posted August 30 2001 - 09:52 AM


Phones are a problem. I think a posted reminder at the main theater entrance and then again at each individual theater to "Please disable ringer on all mobile phones. Vibrate mode only" would be sufficient.


They have it not only on the door to the theatre, but also on a few slides on rotation in the pre-film slide show.

I agree about jammers: the inconvenience to those who are on-call or the like is too great, which is quite unfortunate, since the great unwashed masses seem to be getting dumber by the day.

I did neglect to mention, the fella in question was asked to get off the phone by the guy sitting behind him; the fella held up his hand, as if to say, "Okay, just a minute", then proceeded to jabber away for another five minutes.

Actually, I'm tempted to get out Apocalypse Now when I get home tonight and see how far into the film the mirror breaking scene is, just to see how long that jackass was on the phone for.

I think what upset me most was that it was during Apocalypse Now! I mean, I expect that kind of behaviour during Mission To Mars, but isn't Apocalypse Now reserved for enlightened moviegoers?
My Twitter account: @aaronreynolds

My dumb Star Trek Emoticons Twitter account: @TrekMoticons

More pictures of Theatre Reynolds, children and nonsense: http://instagram.com/aaronreynolds

#9 of 67 OFFLINE   Mark Pfeiffer

Mark Pfeiffer


  • 1,346 posts
  • Join Date: Jun 27 1999

Posted August 30 2001 - 10:23 AM

Whatever the film is tends not to matter. People have become noticeably ruder at public entertainment events (or just in public period). Going to the arthouse doesn't alleviate the problem. I remember listening to the people behind me talking about the set decoration during The Ice Storm. (They remembered how things looked then.) There was a particularly bad screening of The Impostors during which many older women carried on conversations throughout. I'm almost resigned to the whole cell phone issue, which usually consists of the person answering the call and saying, "Watching a movie" (in response to the obvious question "What are you doing?").

For whatever reason, people don't think they can stay out of contact with the world for two hours. The ideal solution, although dubiously feasible, would be to have ushers always on hand in the theater to remove the guilty parties (or maybe just present the threat of removal by being there). Unfortunately, the cost to employ these people would probably affect the bottom line too much. You would need to hire adults, not teenagers to do this.

Read my reviews at www.dvdmon.com

Most recent reviews: Open Your Eyes, Waiting for Guffman, Maelstrom, Diary of a Chambermaid: The Criterion Collection

Most recent column: Panning P&S
Read my reviews at www.dvdmon.com
My blog: Reel Times: Reflections on Cinema

#10 of 67 OFFLINE   Jason_Els



  • 1,096 posts
  • Join Date: Feb 22 2001

Posted August 30 2001 - 10:36 AM

And people wonder why I prefer viewing films at home. I loathe going to the movies these days. Theaters get ever smaller and it's now even hard to find a theater where the films are aspected correctly. Miss the first week and that DTS or Dolby EX title is now playing in a tiny ancilliary theater and in stereo to add insult to injury. The only solution to the cell phone fiasco is to put up signs and actually have ushers like theaters used to have. You gab, you leave. Period.
For beauty is only a step removed from a burning terror we barely sustain, and we worship it for the graceful sublimity with which it disdains to consume us. - Rainer Maria Rilke

My DVD Collection

#11 of 67 OFFLINE   James_Kiang



  • 1,171 posts
  • Join Date: Aug 29 2000

Posted August 30 2001 - 11:26 AM

I of course have to agree that disruptions caused by cell phones, talking, tapping the back of my chair, etc. are all very annoying and can ruin the experience of seeing a movie on the big screen. And yes, with the things people are capable of doing these days you do have to be careful about who you appraoch and how you do so. Still, I think the best thing to do in situations like this one is to politely mention it to the person is the least disruptive manner possible or to contact the theater manager (and contrary to popular belief, I would say most of them are not teenagers). Someone earlier mentioned that they want to be role-models for their children and not get into a confrontation. That is totally commendable. But wouldn't it be a great thing to show children that the way to solve problems is to have a mature interaction with the other person rather than just hold it in and make comments under your breath? If the other person reacts negatively, you still can contact the manager or if it gets way out of control there is always the police (hopefully that happens rarely). Just keep in mind that the attitude you take into any confrontation with a person like this is going to affect the way it is resolved. Just my thoughts.

"Wait a minute. Was she a great big fat person?"

My DVD Collection

#12 of 67 OFFLINE   DaveF



  • 16,339 posts
  • Join Date: Mar 04 2001
  • Real Name:David Fischer
  • LocationOne Loudoun, Ashburn, VA

Posted August 30 2001 - 11:30 AM

I'm continually dismayed, but also surprised, but the movie-going horror stories. I see maybe a movie every month or two at the theater -- not a lot, but a fair number, and I've never experienced a cell-phone call in the theater, or even incessant talkers. And I mean never; not that I can remember in the past 10 years of my adult movie-going. Maybe I'm just lucky. In all the discussions about this, is there any generalization about where this is the worst: cities, the sticks, suburbs, wealthy areas, poor areas?

#13 of 67 OFFLINE   Ted Todorov

Ted Todorov


  • 2,938 posts
  • Join Date: Aug 17 2000

Posted August 30 2001 - 12:07 PM

My personal worst experience was a good 15 years ago (so the phenomenon is not new) in an art theater watching an “art” film (so one can’t just blame J6P type losers). During a showing of Last Year at Marienbad at the long defunct Theater 80 St. Marks an old(er) man talked non stop to his female companion, “explaining” the film and telling her what was about to happen. Repeated attempts were made to shush him to no avail. Finally toward the end of the film, someone screamed “CAN YOU PLEASE SHUT THE FUCK UP SO WE CAN AT LEAST WATCH THE LAST 5 MINUTES IN PEACE!?!” The theater broke into applause and the creep was finally rendered silent. I have a hard time imagining a worse movie than Last Year at Marienbad to have this happen with, because so much depends on the mood it creates. I find that things have actually improved in most of the new mainstream theaters, because the sound is so loud, that unless the chatterbox is sitting right near you, you don’t hear them. The one thing that has gone down from the “good old days” is that the Paris theater now sells popcorn. In the 80s it was the only theater with no concessions and you could watch movies without loud crunching sounds in your ear. Having grown up in a country where eating in a movie theater was unthinkable, I loved the Paris. Ted
Hold on tightly, let go lightly.


#14 of 67 OFFLINE   Mitty


    Supporting Actor

  • 886 posts
  • Join Date: Jan 13 1999

Posted August 30 2001 - 12:07 PM

If you have the nerve to do it, a loud, terse, "EXCUSE ME! WOULD YOU PLEASE GET OFF YOUR CELL PHONE, YOU'RE RUINING THE MOVIE FOR ME!" will get the point across, and most likely either a) embarass the person, or b) get others in the auditorium on your side, murmuring their disapproval. Of course, your success may vary, as in trying to confront a large group of people (usually teens). You'll most likely be ignored, told to f*ck off, or laughed at. But in this case, it was an adult with his date; he had no one "getting his back." A lot of situations like this are handled easily if only ONE person has the nerve to speak up.

#15 of 67 OFFLINE   Jack Briggs

Jack Briggs

    Executive Producer

  • 16,727 posts
  • Join Date: Jun 03 1999

Posted August 30 2001 - 12:19 PM

Well, as Jason sort of said: Let's hear it for home theaters.

I've been attending screenings of 2001 ever since 1968, in a number of towns and at a number of venues. To this day, I'm amazed at some of the audiences. I've seen people pay their money and get into the cinema and gab throughout the film--and since 2001 has a lot of qiuet passages, chatter can be distracting.

First, I wonder, why pay all that money just to sit and talk? You can do that in the comfort of your own home and not disturb others. Then, these same ingrates who have talked throughout a 2001 screening have the nerve to say, after the film is over, that they "didn't understand" the thing. Shutting up and paying attention might have helped.

The situation is far worse these days. I don't think we can generalize about audience behavior based on geography or demographics. But one thing I've noticed about certain L.A. theaters is that audiences are reasonably respectful--perhaps because so many industry types are in attendance (audiences here often sit throughout the credit roll as well). As I said, though, this is true of only certain theaters.

This is the era of the ten-dollar movie ticket. I don't understand those who pay the money and then sit and talk.

And I am proud to say that in this home-theater age, I rarely go to commercial cinemas. The hell with the talkers, the cell phones, the laser pointers, the sticky floors, the poorly illuminated projectors, the overpriced concessions, and the indifferent, apathetic theater management.

Me? I choose to wait for the DVDs.

Posted Image

#16 of 67 OFFLINE   Mike Broadman

Mike Broadman


  • 4,956 posts
  • Join Date: Aug 24 2001

Posted August 30 2001 - 03:59 PM

People are obnoxious because everyone lets them get away with it. If you tell them to stop, most often they will. I was born and raised in Brooklyn, NY and currently live in Boston. Rudeness is a normal part of my day. I'm actually surprised when somone isn't rude. If you stand your ground, the rest will follow. I used to go to a movie theater in a predominantly black neighborhood. There's a stereotype that black people talk and yell at the screen. Where I'm from, it's true. I don't mean to be bigotted or anything, but it's just what I saw. Some think it's a quaint cultural habbit. I think it's horribly obnoxious. Here in Boston, people don't do that as much. I get the cell phones and other annoyances that were mentioned above. I don't know which is worse. Talking in a theater is not as annoying as the laser pointers. At least you can identify the talker and tell them something. Laser pointers are anonymous. Sure there's a chance that someone is a nut job with a gun, but that's pretty slim. Sometimes we have to fight for our right to do our own thing.

#17 of 67 OFFLINE   Steve Owen

Steve Owen

    Second Unit

  • 419 posts
  • Join Date: Jan 07 1999

Posted August 30 2001 - 06:38 PM

I don't know what's on the minds of some people.... I almost never go to the movies anymore and THIS is the reason why. I'm almost ready to swear off going to concerts except at dingy little clubs. This summer, my wife and I went to see U2 in Boston. During the show, the people in front of us were talking LOUDLY thorugh the first several songs.... paying no attention to the concert. We both politely asked them to be more quite or to take the conversation to the hallway. They only talked louder. So I asked them how much their tickets were figuring that maybe once they realized that they were wasting $135/ticket that they might be a little more quiet. Nope. At that point, one guy turned around and tried to strangle me. No kidding. Put his hands around my neck, squeezed, and started swearing up a storm. Needless to say he got booted out (but unforunatly the police didn't seem it was necessary to arrest him on assault charges). I'm continuously amazed at how inconsiderate some people are. Sheesh. I feel bad if I cough during a movie. -Steve
"He says the sun came out last night. He says it sang to him."

#18 of 67 OFFLINE   Phil Florian

Phil Florian


  • 1,190 posts
  • Join Date: Mar 10 2001

Posted August 30 2001 - 06:50 PM

You folks are forgetting the worst transgression, in my opinion...the baby. This has happened far too often in my recent theatre going experiences. A mother (usually young) walks in with her nearly newborn baby in her arms, wailing and crying and doing all the normal things babies do...in their homes. This upsets me on two levels. On the primal parental level, I get upset for the baby. Many summer movies are loud and violent and to expose a child to this is insensitive at best and abusive at worst. On a second level, I am of course upset that they don't leave the theatre when their baby starts to holler and rant. I have that at home. That's why I get a baby sitter. And so should they. Many times these young parents come in with a bunch of friends. Makes me wonder why some of those friends don't offer to babysit and go on their own another night..that's what our friends do. Humph. This is something obvious that movie ticket folks should shut down on right away...it isn't like the baby is hidden away in a pocket like a cell phone. As for cell phone uses in theatres...this may be a bit more labor intensive, but one thing old venues for live shows did (I doubt they still do) is collect people's pagers and cell phones before the show and note where they are sitting in the audience. This was the days when pagers were carried for emergencies only (was it that long ago?). Then, if a real emergency came through, an usher(ha!) would sneak in and let the person know. NIce, quiet and not a real disruption. Oh well...but keep the babies at home! Phil

#19 of 67 OFFLINE   Sebastian_M


    Stunt Coordinator

  • 202 posts
  • Join Date: Sep 03 2000

Posted August 30 2001 - 06:53 PM

Cell phone jammers would be nice but I think the simplest thing to do is to ask everyone to turn their cell phone off before the film starts. I have a phone, the people who I go to the theater with have cell phones but we all turn them off as we enter the theater. Its common sense and courtesy. They should have an employee stand up in front of the screen and ask everyone to turn their phones off and that anyone who has one on will be removed from the theater. Seb ------------------ Tall ships and tall kings Three times three What brought they from the foundered land Over the flowing sea? Seven stars and seven stones And one white tree
In Dwimordene, in Lorien
Seldom have walked the feet of Men,
Few mortal eyes have seen the light
That lies there ever, long and bright.
Galadriel! Galadriel!Clear is the water of your well;White is the star in your white hand;Unmarred, unstained is leaf and landIn Dwimordene, in LorienMore...

#20 of 67 OFFLINE   Martin Fontaine

Martin Fontaine

    Supporting Actor

  • 628 posts
  • Join Date: Aug 15 2001

Posted August 30 2001 - 07:05 PM

I guess that's the good thing about Montreal.

Here too there are a lot of trouble makers in theaters. But there is one theater (The Famous Players Paramount downtown) that doesn't have those problems (Or at least very little) for the following reasons.

1. Being that 80% of the population here speaks french (And watch their movies dubbed in french Posted Image ) going to see the proper version insures a more educated audiance. And the 'Mount only shows the proper version of a movie.

2. Tickets are 3$ more expensive than anywhere else. I get shit all the time from people telling me that I'm stupid for spending $12.50 on a movie when the Guzzos have it for $9. So here again, trouble makers who don't care about the movie and do those stupid things, stay clear of the 'Mount.

3. There is an employee coming 5 minutes before show time to tell people to turn off their cell phones, pagers, not to put their feet in front and other things like that, Ok so they won't necessairly listen, but that helps.
My DVDs | My Equipment
No OAR = No Sale!
If you don't want black bars, then you don't want DVD!

0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users