After my experience last night at the movies, I’ve decided I need to post some general etiquette rules for people going to the movies. I don’t want to imply that last night was a horrible experience, because it wasn’t. It wasn’t a great experience either, but I was just in one of those moods where little things annoyed me. And no, I am not talking about Vin Diesel’s acting, or lack thereof, I’m talking about just plain old common decency. So with that lead in, let me get started:
- If you are bringing a child with you, and why you must do that is beyond me, make sure the movie you choose is appropriate for their age. And for the record no movie is appropriate for an infant. That didn’t happen last night, but I’m still angry about the parents that brought their newborn with them to see the final film in the Lord of the Rings trilogy. The baby cried throughout the whole loud scary film. And don’t make the excuse for those parents that they probably couldn’t afford a babysitter. If you can’t afford a babysitter, you can’t afford the movie. Sorry, but not sorry. That’s a fact. Last night the people directly behind me had a kid that could not have been any older than seven years old. The movie was rated PG-13. I’m sorry not age appropriate. As was witnessed by this child’s failure to follow rule number 2.
- Talking during a movie is not to be done. If you are hard of hearing and need to have everything repeated to you, wait for it to come out on Netflix or Redbox. But don’t ask your movie going friend to repeat everything. If you are amazed at something on the screen, turning to your movie partner and saying “Did you see that?” is stupid. Either they obviously did since it was on a large screen directly in front of them or they are blind and you should already be aware that they did not see it. And if you have brought one of those children things with you, explain to them that the movie going experience is not the time to play the “But why?” game. This little thing behind me kept asking the two guys who brought him with them to the movies (my guess is that dad got stuck babysitting so he decided to go to the movies with a friend and bring the child with him so he wouldn’t have to actually spend time with said thing) to explain why they were doing the things they were doing. This was annoying for various reasons, not the least being that it was Furious 7, there was no rationale behind the choices the writers made beyond it would look cool on screen. I’m also reminded of the time I went to go see Cars at the movies. Now that was a child’s film, so I expected children to be there, and for this reason I typically choose to go to the late show so that there aren’t as many of those things there, but some parents apparently don’t enforce bedtimes so there are still kids at even those showings. Anyway the time I went to see Cars, I remember a little kid sitting behind me that decided to start singing “Jesus Loves Me” midway through the movie. I still think I deserve a medal for not turning around and telling that child it was a good thing that Jesus loved him, because I certainly did not.
- Sticking with the annoying creature sitting behind me last night, if you must bring them to the movies with you, control their squirming around and kicking the seat in front of them. I personally think duct tape or rope should be allowed, but apparently DCFS feels differently. See my problem is I paid as much for my ticket as said child’s parents paid for his, I did not pay extra for a bad back massage offered to me by my chair being kicked constantly throughout the film. So settle that squirmy thing down and if he must kick something have him kick you, not me.
- Switching topics, if you are one of those people that can’t get to the theatre early or at least on time, when you get inside and the previews are playing, you do not get to be picky about where you are going to sit. Find the first available seats that your party will fit into and have a seat. Some of us actually do enjoy the previews, well unless it is that damn Paul Blart preview, and we do not appreciate your making a drama out of where you are going to sit. And you certainly don’t have the right to ask people to move to make room for your party. I’m sorry, but unless the reason you are late is because you were busy locking your child in the closet because the babysitter never showed up, I don’t think I should have to move since I got here on time. And before anyone gets offended, no I do not think it is appropriate to lock your child in the closet, tempting but not appropriate,
- Please do not share with the entire audience whether or not you want to see each movie that they show the previews for. I really don’t care if you want to see it. I don’t care if you enjoyed the first one. Well okay if you are saying you want to see that damn Paul Blart sequel because you really loved the first one, I might want to know. Stupid could be contagious. But other than that, shut up already. I don’t care and I’m guessing your date is hoping they have found a way to break up with you before that movie comes to the silver screen.
- Buy your concessions and use the facilities before the movie starts. If you eat and drink a lot, buy the large. If you have bladder control problems, sit in the front and on the aisle. It’s rude to get up in the middle of the movie, and it’s even ruder to expect me to get up and move so that you can go refill your popcorn or release your bladder. And rude is one of the few things I find more annoying than cute. And I detest cuteness.
- I don’t think I should have to tell you at this point to leave your phone in your pocket or purse. There is no reason to get it out. Even to check what time it is. The light is distracting, as is your squirming around to find it. I get that some movies are pathetically boring and you are trying to figure out if you are going to survive. You will survive, I promise. No one died from boredom while watching The Kids Are All Right, and if that didn’t do it nothing ever will.
- If you are one of those people that thinks it is appropriate to sneak in food in your purse, pockets and coats, I get it. Concessions at the movies are expensive. But get those snacks out before the lights go out, don’t be digging around your purse and coat pockets to find the snacks and distribute them to your friends and family. Even if you want to share with me, it’s distracting and a problem.
- When the movie is over, look down both sides of the aisle you are sitting in and if you notice that the people to the right of you are not getting up but are staying seated to watch the credits, head out on the left. I am one of those people that likes to watch the credits. I want to know who played that guy in Tokyo who suffered through trying to act opposite Diesel. And if you are going to head my way, I’m not moving so you can get out. And you standing there acting like you have someplace more important to be, makes me determined to stick around and find out what type of film they used in what kind of camera. I promise you, I can be a more obnoxious ass than you. By the way, that guy is Lucas Black, the kid from Sling Blade.
Okay, those are my etiquette rules. Please be aware that I am subject to adding to these rules at any point and time. And if you agree with these rules, please be aware that making them actual law of the land is on my platform for when I run for President.