Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Quick clips for Wednesday December 17

Because the number of interesting film tidbits and items are just as slowed by the mind-numbing frigidity of the weather as my will to live, we're going to do things differently today. Instead of dumping movie news chunks on your eyeballs (that sounded way more disgusting than I wanted it to), we're going to editorialize a bit about three irritating subjects. It's the three bitches of Christmas or, to be less religiously divisive, The Festivus "Airing of Grievances."

Grievance One: Sit the Eff Down

Ladies and gentleman, we are gathered here today not to bitch about cell phone use in the theater (if you do this, you are a malignant douche hammer who believes himself to be beyond such concerns as "other people" and the universe will soon dispose of you as one disposes of single use toilet paper). We are not gathered here to bitch about bringing kids too young to sit through a 3-hour violent war opus or sex-soiled horror film (these people will also one day succumb to the universe's TP disposal methods). No, we are here to bitch about the late arrivers, those who think they can still go see the movie they've arrived 20 minutes late for anyway. Now, the fact that you have no disregard whatsoever for your own money is fine by me...although, do consider that missing 20 minutes of a 2-hour movie is basically the equivalent of pouring the neck of the bottle of Canadian Springs whiskey you spent the last few hours drinking onto the street. No, what I'm worried about is the chain of events that your clock-ignoring ass sets into motion. Step 1: You disrupt the entire theater as you either look for your friends who you are meeting (who should not be your friends because they are decent, punctual human beings) or you fumble around letting your eyes adjust while you hunt for the perfect seat in a theater that has been watching a movie for the last 20 minutes. Step 2: This disruption causes annoyance in other theater members (cough, ME, cough), resulting in a distraction from the plot, events, and mood. If we WERE into the movie's world, we are now reminded that we are actually just in a small box with disrespectful subhuman pigmen. Step 3: YOU have missed the opening of the film. Now, whenever a character arrives on screen to do something, you must lean over and go "Who's she?" and "What is she doing?" Step 4: You are bludgeoned to death with a $16 box of Milk Duds. Look, I get running late, but if you miss by more than the length of the previews (give or take a minute), you are too late and should go to another movie or wait for the next show. Period. No exceptions. In fact, this should be a rule for the theater...NAY, it should be a federal mandate that also grants pardon for the inevitable Milk Dud bludgeoning. You've been warned.

Grievance Two: Don't make me hate trailers like God hates trailer parks

We all know that one of the best things about the movies is seeing previews. I mean, sure, we all know that the new Adam Sandler movie is going to suck, but the trailer is good for a laugh. What's that? You have a cool new, end-of-the-world, special effects orgy movie?! After seeing the trailer once, I've already seen you blow your visual wad, so who needs to see the full thing, which is likely crammed with terrible acting by CW stars. Murder mystery? I bet I can figure out the whole thing by the time you're done playing that Dave Matthews Band song! That said, an interesting thing has happened with previews...we're getting more of them...a lot more of them. Last weekend I sat through 9, count them, 9 previews. I wanted to see 8 of those movies, sure, but after the third I was like "just show me the damn Keanu Reeves movie already" and I have never, ever thought that before. Also, I know I've complained before about giving stuff away in the preview, but nobody's going to change that, but can we talk about shortening the length of those bad boys? I mean, a 90-second spot is all it takes to sell me a Lexus or other fine luxury automobile (at least according to the people who thing that wealthy individuals are watching the Bears game and not schtupping some model), isn't 90 seconds all it should take to convince me that, yes, I do want to see Hugh Jackman as Wolverine disemboweling people again? Too much of a good thing is a bad thing sometimes, just ask Hugh Hefner. I love me some trailers, but only for a few minutes. Sounds reasonable, right?

Grievance three: The only thing longer than the movie was your description of how long the movie was

I've said it before and I'll say it again: no, movies shouldn't be 3 hours long unless they are adapting a 10,000 word book or unless 99% of that runtime features a mostly nekkid Rachel McAdams. Still, you don't have to bitch EVERY time about how long the movie is. Here's the thing, they've invented a device called the "Internet." On it, you can see the running time for the movie you are considering watching and then complaining about. What I'm saying is, this should not come as a surprise to you. Thus, when I ask you afterward what you thought, do not say to me "Well, it was long." Really? Really, time master, you think? Yes it was long, but was it good? If you say "it didn't sustain its run time," I at least find you a competent being but "it was long" is not a commentary its a statement of fact. If you're one of those people with the attention span of a fruit fly who can't finish the latest Dean Koontz book because its "too long," maybe you shouldn't be seeing movies that have a run time higher than your IQ. Find something new to complain about! Whine about lighting, or makeup, or dialogue, or plot, or the guy next to you who showed up 20 minutes into the movie, or about how long/plentiful the trailers were. Slip the whining about the length into the middle and we may even stay friends afterwards. You never know!

Well folks, that's my Festivus grievances. If you have your own, I encourage you to leave them. It's very therapeutic.
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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I once arrived late to a movie, didn't wait for my eyes to adjust, scooted down a dark row of seats, and sat directly on another man's lap. After jumping up and immediately apologizing to the dark figure, I fumbled to an empty seat that happened to be just one seat away from the poor guy and sat down again. I'm sure he was either a) completely repulsed or b) couldn't believe his fantastic luck. Anyway, a couple of minutes later, I quietly moved farther away from him, as the act of sitting right next to him in a mostly empty theater seemed to send the wrong signal. Needless to say, when the movie ended, I hopped up and trotted off, without looking back.

December 18, 2008  

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