Worst Movie-going Experience Ever

presented by j:

Christa and i have made it a holiday tradition in our two holiday seasons as husband and wife (see: matrimony) to go view Christmas lights and also view a film.

in 2010, it was lights in Plano and then “The King’s Speech” at the Angelika Plano.  for Christa, this was one of the worst movie-going experiences, not because the movie was bad, but because the theatre (see: theater) was so frigidly cold, she became frigidly cold.  i can vouch for the frigidness of the theatre since i do not normally get cold in theatres and even i got a bit nippy.  i spent the better half of the film rubbing her shoulders to keep her warm.  so, needless to say, we had to rent the movie months later to remember if it was actually good or not.

in 2011, the tradition continued.  we decided to flip-flop the order of the evening, though, and go see the movie first, supposing that last year’s fiasco was because we had gone to a late showing with fewer warm bodies in attendance.  because i really wanted to see “The Artist,” that is what we went to see.

click below to see more…or not.  it’s a free country.

i was excited as we waited for the movie to begin.  as the previews were playing, though, enter The Old, Loud Couple.

Old, Loud Woman: I thought the lady at the box office said there were no previews!
Old, Loud Man: I guess we’ll have to tell her she was wrong!

The Old, Loud Couple sat down in the row behind us, just to my left.  i assumed once they got settled in, they would quiet down.  i was wrong.  so wrong.  i was swrong (see: made up word).

The Old, Loud Man decided to leave at the start of the movie to go get popcorn.  perhaps this is a good point to mention that “The Artist” is a (mostly) silent film.  yes.  silent.  as in no sound but music.  as in, everyone can hear you if you make the slightest noise.

so what does The Old, Loud Man do when he returns?


up. every. single. step. to. his. seat.

oh, and don’t forget eating the aforementioned popcorn.


apparently, The Old, Loud Couple was under the impression they had been invited to the movie to provide the future blu-ray commentary.  if so, it was the worst commentary ever, basically just saying what was happening on the screen.

Old, Loud Man: oh, now he’s angry.
Old, Loud Woman: well, he’s not even trying to transition!
Old, Loud Man: there goes the dog!

(Title Card appears on screen.  Old, Loud Man proceeds to read aloud word for word since apparently, Old, Loud Woman is illiterate.)

Old, Loud Woman: sound!
(because apparently none of the rest of us heard the first use of sound in the movie)

all this to say, it was probably the worst movie-going experience of my life – even worse than the angry, mocking, profanity-laden exclamations provoked by uber-artsy “The Tree of Life.”

the whole time, i was squeezing Christa’s hand to contain my frustration.  i wanted to turn around and tell them to be quiet, but at the same time, i didn’t want to add to the noise factor of the theatre, and i didn’t want to be “that guy who told the old couple to shut up.”

i mean, props to them for getting out of the house and going to the movies.  my grandparents sure don’t.  but it’s basic movie theatre etiquette to be quiet during a movie, especially a SILENT movie.  it’s worse than having to tell my teenage sister to stop texting during the middle of Blue Pocahontas in Space.

i expect noise at a family flick like “Kung Fu Panda 2” or “The Muppets” – but that’s part of the fun of those movies.  this was not fun.  it was torture for a cinephile like me.

this being one of my longer posts, i’d better wrap it up.  “The Artist” is a great movie, but i’ll have to watch it again to really enjoy it.  i can’t imagine what movie we will see next year when we go view Christmas lights, but here’s to hoping it will be warmer and quieter.

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