Wednesday, 6 August 2008

Of Cinemas and Children...

I like cinema halls. I really, really do. I like going there, and sitting in the darkness, getting involved with the story of the film. I enjoy going to cinema halls with my friends, poking fun at crappy movies, pointing out errors in comic book canon in superhero movies. Most of all, I enjoy movies themselves. They're generally nice. You know, a nice alternate reality for a couple of hours.

The Dark Knight is a brilliant movie. I loved it. Chris Nolan did a wonderful job, Heath Ledger was par excellence, Aaron Eckhart did his bit as Harvey Two-Face, Christian Bale did no better than could be expected of him and his crappy double voice. The plot was great, if a little cluttered, characterisation was good, all in all, a movie I don't mind watching three times in a theatre, especially if one of those was paid for by someone else.

The first time I saw it, I loved it. It was great. I got to the theatre just in time to catch Dino Morea say how one could "go to F***, meet famous people and become famous". Phew. At least I missed the rest of the witty banter. Thankfully, the movie began soon enough, and I was riveted from the beginning. Thoroughly enjoyable despite the immature sports jocks (who were only really there to make out with their wannabe-immature-sports-jock boyfriends) shushing each other just for the f@#$ of it. F***'s (from what I've seen, I'm afraid I'll have to admit) "superior sound and visual quality, never before seen in India" (yeah, I've seen that intro film way too many times) more than made up for the a$$hole jerk-offs and their wannabe-wannabe-girlfriends. Plus it was my first time (yes, that term can be used in this context. Go see the film, you'll get it), so it got me real good.

The second time was with cousins, at Asia's largest waste of expensive air conditioning that comes through the screen. This is the one I didn't pay for; my cousin has a tendency to still think of me as 12, so she insists that I pay for nothing. This time, we were late by five minutes (my bad) and missed the opening scene completely. However, after the whole "I'm not wearing hockey pants" farce, the movie picked up. Particularly enjoyable was my li'l cousin sis jumping out of her skin every time there was an explosion or loud, sudden event on screen, and her even younger brother, utterly unable to decide whether to relish those same moments on screen more or her reactions. Then, Dome-boys decide that their projector has to f@#$ up. The image slows down and comes to a halt on a blank white screen. Little kids get up dejectedly and swear at the projectionist. The less-comically inclined among the audience decide that it's the interval, and concurrently proceed to go out and get some popcorn. And while they're out there, the movie resumes. When they come back in, they audibly say (despite the presence of their own bloody kids), "F@#$, it's started already!". Then, moments later, just for the bloody goddamn crap of it, behind the Gotham skyline, the words, 'The popcorn is waiting for you!' are flashed, and just like that, mid-dialogue, the skyline disappears and the interval begins. After the damn interval, to add insult to f@#$%^g injury, they cut important dialogues just so the movie can fit into their convenient little time slot. Didn't hear of them doing that with Jodha Akbar, though. Gah. There's one place I'm not returning in a hurry without suffering from amnesia.

This next one is the clincher, though. Watch out. It's long. And abusive.

Well, as they say, third time's the charm, eh? My girlfriend found out that I went and saw the movie with my cousins and immediately decided to get mad at me, 'cause she wanted to see it with me. Not, a problem, I said, we can still go watch it. And with that, we arrived at a theater whose name is one letter away from one of the words in the title of this post. I got there a whole 15 minutes early (yes, Kannu, that's not a typo), so we got into the practically empty theatre. The lights go dim, the movie's about to begin. And then it happens. Screaming, running, disorderly, what seemed like a hundred, but was probably closer to fifteen, eleven year-olds enter the theatre. And I groan. I know I'm going to hate this right away. Come 11.30 and the movie begins. Immediately I know something is wrong. Despite having seen the movie twice, I'm struggling to catch the dialogues. And then an explosion happens. Now I know what's happening. The speakers for the dialogues are all the way at the front of the hall, and the music and sound effects are at the rear. Woo the bloody hoo!! It was like watching The Dark Knight enacted by mimes. Aaaaaarghh!!!! To top it off, more kids arrive at 12, searching for their buddies in the dark, in their seats immediately ahead of me. And a loud, eleven year-old argument ensues: "No, I want to sit here!" "Kubir, go sit there!" "No, what are you doing?" GAH!!!!! Ruined the Joker's scene with the mob bosses for me. The rest of the first half continues miserably, and I'm punching the armrest to keep myself in check. Now a man walks into the theatre (it's 12.30), and finds his friend directly behind me, and with utter disregard for anyone and anything, starts conversing, above music level, about what he's missed. That's it. With the rugrats, I stayed my hand. I'm not sitting tight about this. I turn around and say, "You mind? I'm trying to watch." The guy looks at me and says, "Oh, sorry." When I turn around, he says to his newly arrived buddy in an undertone that could still f@#$%^g be heard above the music, "I think he wants us to talk quietly..." Dude. You should be in, like, The All India Braniacs Association or something. And then the interval hits us. Brilliant timing, too, just before the interrogation. I stay in my seat, as the rugrats leave the hall to go get their popcorn. I notice with glee that they come in a minute or so late, sans said popcorn. And then my glee turns to horror. Once again, they start squabbling over seating arrangements. That lasts another five minutes. I was supposed to be holding her hand and all that, but I gently ease away so I can clench my fist and bite down on my knuckles. Finally, they settle down, and the interrogation is just about heating up. Woo hoo! A good scene, and I might just get to enjoy it. Really? Did I really think so? How could I be so self involved? Four, yes, f@#$%^g four attendants walk in with trays laden with popcorn, and the two rows in front of me explode. They f@#$%^g stand up, all of them, and start yelling, "That one's mine!" "I ordered caramel!" "Uncle, what about me?" If they bloody wanted popcorn, they could've gone to the damn beach. I put my head in my hands and give up trying to catch one of the best dialogues in the movie. The movie proceeds, and we come to a point where the music all but fades away, and an important emotional dialogue is on. And the only thing I can hear is the munch-munch of popcorn all around me. I believe I've made my views on audible eating pretty damn clear. This is the point where I was barely even bloody looking at the screen anymore, but the kids piped down for some reason once they had their stupid popcorn. With ten minutes left in the movie, I figured, heck, let me try to enjoy this, at least... But no, the wonderful, loving theatre decides, these dialogues aren't important, let's just play the music and the sound effects. And with that, I step out of the theatre.

And the kids are all going,"Oh, what an awesome movie!" "I want to see it again!" Didja see any of it, even? Goddamn punks. People, understand this. The Dark Knight is not a children's movie. It's not an inspiring superhero story that your kids should see. They won't even f@#$%^g get it for another ten years, minumum. It's a dark, scary movie. It's not a fun family outing. It is especially not a movie you send twenty eleven year-olds to watch, alone. Please. Do your bit for the community. Give back to society. That's all I ask.

P.S. Maniak, I think I've been reading your blog too much; this post is uncharacteristically like most of yours.

Disclaimer: To women out there who thought my blog was interesting and have changed their minds based on my orations about children here, let me clarify. I love the little brats. They're nice. God willing, I'll have my own someday. But I will f@#$%^g teach them to respect other people's money spent on good movie tickets.

6 member protest rally:

Che said...

Coming to the dark side are you.

BTW it was Hockey pads and not Hockey pants.

Maybe if you reaaaalllly want to enjoy the movie cough up money for the gold class like i did. most people cant afford it, kids definitely cant, seats are 2 feet apart on sides so even your girlfriend cannot talk to you forget the people behind. And with just 20 people its far easier to spot the culprit and beat the daylights out of him/her. Oh and did I mention the sound system?

Che said...

And my blog is children friendly :P

Jhayu said...

1) It sure sounded to me like 'hockey pants'. I didn't get it, but I'm guessing you're right.

2)I'm not so sure I'd enjoy that as much. Too little space is one thing, too much space is another altogether.

3)I'm one of the 'most people'.

4) I'm not so sure I want the ass of my ears kicked.

5) Your blog is child-friendly? Really? With the random acts of borderline alcoholism?

Keetarp Aidonak said...

15 minutes early?? i thought you were very late for the previous show..

PS I guess i wasn't subtle enough in showing my disgust at you being late :P

Over Rated said...

Kids at a Dark Knight show? What's next? Children's day at the playboy mansion???

Jhayu said...

@ Kannu.
*teeheehee* This is what happens when you book movie tickets for 11.30 and not 11.00.

@ over rated.
What's next? A 'Mothers Against The Music Of Kiss' convention at a Pantera concert, maybe...

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