Monday, July 18, 2005


I Honestly Think You'd Look Better On Death Row

I was reading this post, and in particular this comment, when a memory hit me of something I'd been meaning to moan about for absolutely ages.

I should think that there are few people in the world who go to the cinema quite as often as I do without it being their job. I usually go five times a week, although I've been a bit slack lately. In the time I've been doing this, I've noticed certain facts about cinema-going. Firstly, there is simply no way of knowing, after a films first night or two, which films will be busy and at what times.

Secondly, and most importantly, seeing a film with a big crowd is guaranteed to spoil your enjoyment. I'm honestly coming to the conclusion that if, by the time the film starts, the auditorium is full, I might as well leave and come back later. I can trace many of the films I've hated, and I saw most with a big audience. The worst case was 'The Edukators', which I thought was hateful tripe, particularly because it was political, and it proposed an ideology without ever even bothering to challenge it. Nonetheless, there were a couple of laughs in one section of the film, which were completely ruined by the lady next to me. For starters, she was grotesquely fat, which had pushed me onto the very edge of my seat, practically falling into the aisle. Worse, though, was her laugh. She didn't even laugh properly, she snickered. I couldn't have found her more hideous if she'd performed a striptease.

Still, she was just the worst of a bad bunch. Nearly everyone in the cinema was a student, and because the film was one of the most left-wing you'll ever see, they all felt the need to validate their own political views by continually chortling at lines that weren't even slightly funny. By the end, I was so angry, I was gripping the bottom of the seat, and when I got outside, a knuckle inspection revealed they were completely white. I didn't get any colour back for hours.

It isn't just laughing that annoys me, however. Obviously, talking is dreadful, and I would welcome bringing back capital punishment for offenders, and don't even get me started on people who scream in horror films. Worse than those, though, is people who go to the toilet. I drink a lot in my life, but I will not drink alcohol before going to a movie because I don't want to ruin the fun of everyone else. If, by some accident of fate, I have had a couple, I'll only sit in the back row. I saw 'War Of The Worlds' the other day, and I quite enjoyed it, but I'd have gotten much, much more out of it if the blokes in the row in front didn't keep going to the bathroom. They talked a lot too. Unbelievably, at one point, one of them got up to scratch his arse. Had I a pump-action, I'd have blown him away.

I, on the other hand, just don't make trouble. Even if I'm watching a comedy on telly with my mates, I try not to laugh out loud. I very rarely do, actually. I find many things absolutely hilarious, but to watch me you wouldn't know it.

The next time I'm in a job interview, I'm going to list that as my main quality.

That's a good point. I think out of all the times I've been to the pictures (not a lot of late, but plenty in the past) the times I've seem them in a virually empty cinema are the best.

In fact, when I saw Flying High, I was the only person there.
I went to see The Producers not long ago - the play, that is, not the film. The music was great, the sets were superb, but the theatre was full of rich old ladies laughing at Hitler jokes. Ruined it for me, it did.
Tony -

I've been the only person in the cinema before! It was to see 'Seed Of Chucky.' It was fantastic, because whenever there was a lull in the film I could jump around on the seats or whatever. Presumably, however, I was caught on CCTV. I haven't been back to that cinema since, but I'm probably on some kind of blacklist.

I just don't think it's a coincidence that one of my very favourite films I've seen at the cinema, 'Life Is A Miracle', had very few people there, while 'The Edukators', one of my least favourite, was awful and full. The really funny thing is that I saw them on the same day.

Hungbunny -

I keep meaning to go to the theatre more often. Every time I consider it, I mentally dismiss as likely to be boring, yet I've never ever had a bad time at the theatre. Indeed, about eighteen months ago, I went to see a play about Philip Larkin at the Comedy Theatre called 'Pretending To Be Me', and it was one of the very best nights of my entire life.

There's nothing worse than rich old ladies generally. Rich, early middle-aged ladies, on the other hand - that's where it's at!
The best thing about rich old ladies is that they can die and leave you loads of lolly.
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