Movie Theater Experiences

Discuss films and filmmakers of the 20th century (and even a little of the 19th century). Threads may contain spoilers.
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beamish13
Joined: Sun Oct 14, 2007 5:31 am

Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#726 Post by beamish13 » Mon Apr 11, 2016 10:42 am

Caught two Chantal Ackerman films at the Cinefamily this past weekend, Golden Eighties and Les Rendez-Vous d'Anna. Unfortunately, both prints were shipped from Belgium sans subtitles. Golden Eighties was on Saturday afternoon, and after the series organizer and theatre founder both came out to apologize, at least half of the audience opted to leave. I decided to stay, because while a makeup screening(s) was promised, I didn't want to gamble with it being programmed on a day I couldn't come, and I'd already driven nearly an hour to get to the there. The Cinefamily is fickle with its screenings as well; a few years ago, I'd bought a ticket to see a new print of Punishment Park, and found out at the eleventh hour that it had been canceled because they decided to squeeze in a preview of, I think, 21 Jump Street.

The screening of Les Rendez-Vous was smoother, although the theatre had to use "soft subtitles" projected from a DVD below the 35mm print. I'd seen them use that process to much smoother effect during their massive Andrzej Zulawski retrospective, but I was still disappointed and mildly frustrated.

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D50
Joined: Sat Sep 04, 2010 2:00 am
Location: USA

Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#727 Post by D50 » Fri Apr 15, 2016 7:04 pm

Starting to see the clean up crew interfering with the complete showing of credits. Was at the 12:25pm showing of Everybody Wants Some!! and a few minutes into it all of the lights come on. Not the low lights that come on when the credits started, so people can see the steps, but the bright lights. Then the two workers come moseying in pushing the trash can. I don't say anything, and they see me (the only one) sitting there and continue across in front of me so I say "can you please turn off the lights so I can watch this?". And just so happens there are scenes being played during the credits (which is not the point). This is the second time all of the lights came on - few weeks ago it was a Century, this time Regal - both times the manager gave me a movie pass. What is becoming more common is the crew starting clean up while the credits are still going, while you are sitting there, watching - which is very distracting.

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warren oates
Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2012 12:16 pm

Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#728 Post by warren oates » Fri Apr 15, 2016 7:56 pm

Apropos of clean-up crews: I recommend Annie Baker's play The Flick to D50 and everyone else. Baker is one of the most talented American playwrights to come along in a while, and I feel like there's been more mention of her excellent work in film & TV circles since Louis C.K. thanked her in the credits to Horace and Pete.

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RossyG
Joined: Sat May 30, 2009 5:50 pm

Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#729 Post by RossyG » Sat Apr 16, 2016 5:11 am

I saw the third Pirates of the Caribbean film at the Vue in Portsmouth, England in 2007.

The clean up crew rattled their wheelie bin into the auditorium during the last couple of minutes of the film and stood lined up against the side wall like soldiers on the parade ground.

During that fade to black between the last shot and the end credits - the moment when you pause for reflection over what you've just seen - they launched into action, running up the steps two at a time and noisily getting to work. They spoiled the climax of the (admittedly poor, but that's not the point) film and exuded the vibe of "Right, it's over. What or you waiting for? We've got work to do. Kindly fuck off."

It turned out there was an additional scene at the end, but no one would've been there for it. And yes, we could've made a scene or complained, but were British, so we didn't.

I just bought a bigger telly and a Blu-Ray player.

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D50
Joined: Sat Sep 04, 2010 2:00 am
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Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#730 Post by D50 » Sat Apr 16, 2016 8:36 am

warren oates wrote:Apropos of clean-up crews: I recommend Annie Baker's play The Flick to D50 and everyone else. Baker is one of the most talented American playwrights to come along in a while, and I feel like there's been more mention of her excellent work in film & TV circles since Louis C.K. thanked her in the credits to Horace and Pete.
Now I want to read this.

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Fred Holywell
Joined: Thu Jun 10, 2010 11:45 pm

Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#731 Post by Fred Holywell » Mon Jul 18, 2016 9:48 pm

There's a pretty amusing take on this topic in the 1943 MGM movie The Youngest Profession. link

ThatKid
Joined: Mon Jul 18, 2016 5:20 am

Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#732 Post by ThatKid » Tue Jul 19, 2016 2:49 am

A week or so ago, while I was in Melbourne with my dad, there was a movie theatre 5 minutes up the road from where we stayed. But this theatre is different. It's called The Astor Theatre, and it's one of the last single-screen theatres on Earth. We found out that the double feature for the night was The Graduate, followed up by Belle de Jour. I thought it would be nice to see those two, as we had nothing else to do for the night. So we went down, bought our tickets, and watched the movie. And it was great. The audience for both films were respectful, and kept quiet throughout the movie. My dad and I during Belle de Jour ate our chips we had as quietly as possible because we didn't want to distract anyone else from the film! And before The Graduate, it showed trailers for Paper Moon and Sorcerer, which was pretty cool. The only quibble about the film was that the older HD master was projected, and oh boy, it looked soft. Belle de Jour looked pretty good, though.

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carmilla mircalla
Joined: Mon Jul 13, 2015 9:47 pm

Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#733 Post by carmilla mircalla » Tue Jul 19, 2016 3:20 am

I wanted to share an experience and also ask if anyone else has witnessed this but when the Hangover III came out me and a friend went to go see it and we had found out about 5 or so minutes in that the only the soundtrack that contained the music and ambient sound/foley effects was playing and not the audio track with the dialogue. So everyone is sitting awkward in the theater giving it just a bit of time
To see if the mistake was noticed but no one got up. So it was about 10 full minutes where I decided to get up but so did someon else and we were compensated by the theater but my question is has anyone else experienced a like scenario and just sat there for some reason or another hoping the problem would be fixed without anyone saying anything?

It also reminds me of another story an old coworker of mine went and saw harold and kumar 3d back in 2011 and she mentioned that the movie was out of focus... The entire time... In 3d. I asked why she or no one else said anything and she just said it wasn't that badly out of focus so she didn't feel the need to complain. I mean it's up for debate just how "not a problem" it was but forking over $15 for any 3d movie and the least you could but shouldn't even have to ask for is for it to be in focus.

Lastly I only remember one time where I attended a movie and it was out of focus and it was The One with Jet Li but since there were still actual projectors at that time it got resolved in a span of five minutes.

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mistakaninja
Joined: Thu Aug 15, 2013 5:15 pm

Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#734 Post by mistakaninja » Tue Jul 19, 2016 4:35 am

Years back, when reels were still used, I saw American Psycho in a New York theatre. One of them was put on backwards or something, resulting in everything being upside down and in reverse. But the scene it jumped to was the chainsaw in the stairwell bit, where it wasn't immediately obvious what had happened (other than an abrupt jump cut) as the camera was looking up at Bale. Then the chainsaw came flying back up into his hand. I was there on holiday with some mates, and we quietly started discussing what the least-mortifying way of handling this snafu was going to be, but while we were still on the maybe-we-can-piece-it-together-in-our-heads-afterwards stage of suggestions, New York had already dealt with it and some dude came round giving everyone two free tickets. We flew home the next day, but saw James Toback's Black and White before we left. So that was nice.

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CSM126
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Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#735 Post by CSM126 » Mon Jul 25, 2016 6:01 am

I remember seeing M. Night Shyamalan's Devil and somehow or another the projector apparently slipped, resulting in the image being half on the screen and half on the wall below. The film was (a) terrible and (b) in the third act anyway, so neither I nor the four other people there bothered getting up to mention it. I don't think we lost anything of value.

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D50
Joined: Sat Sep 04, 2010 2:00 am
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Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#736 Post by D50 » Sat Aug 20, 2016 9:52 am

In a regal cineplex 18 whathaveyou, I got to see Umimachi Diary (Out Little Sister) in a theater that I had never been (happened to be #2). I waited outside for the pre-trailer stuff to play out and entered at the show time. Sat at my usual 1/3 up from the entrance. I then noticed that the projected image was huge, and extending to every square inch of screen - a beautiful sight - so I got up and walked up / back to the last 3rd, and was good. About a fourth into the film the usher walks in on the left, starts walking up the side steps about half way, does an about face and then walks in front of the first row and the top half of her body actually cast a shadow on the screen blocking out the English subtitles as she's making her b-line for the exit in the front right, then walks up the right side steps about half way again, heads back to the front and once again walks right in front of the screen.

Unacceptable. And this is a theater employee doing it.

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RossyG
Joined: Sat May 30, 2009 5:50 pm

Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#737 Post by RossyG » Sat Aug 20, 2016 2:19 pm

You should try the Duke of York's in Brighton. It's the UK's oldest cinema, over 100 years, and it's a lovely building, but the staff are something else. There's some kind of storeroom behind the screen with a door to its right. Midway through a screening, I and every other patron saw three staff members enter the room, switch on the light, which is distracting, and actually pick up a large cardboard advertising standee which they proceeded to manhandle through the door right next to the screen and then walk it up the aisle.

That was the worst example, but they've been in and out of that room during screenings a few times in my presence, often emerging with bulky items that they carry down the aisle.

And they talk and laugh in the lobby and you can hear them.

Raymond Marble
Joined: Sat Mar 29, 2014 8:48 pm

Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#738 Post by Raymond Marble » Sat Aug 20, 2016 3:21 pm

D50 wrote:In a regal cineplex 18 whathaveyou, I got to see Umimachi Diary (Out Little Sister) in a theater that I had never been (happened to be #2). I waited outside for the pre-trailer stuff to play out and entered at the show time. Sat at my usual 1/3 up from the entrance. I then noticed that the projected image was huge, and extending to every square inch of screen - a beautiful sight - so I got up and walked up / back to the last 3rd, and was good. About a fourth into the film the usher walks in on the left, starts walking up the side steps about half way, does an about face and then walks in front of the first row and the top half of her body actually cast a shadow on the screen blocking out the English subtitles as she's making her b-line for the exit in the front right, then walks up the right side steps about half way again, heads back to the front and once again walks right in front of the screen.

Unacceptable. And this is a theater employee doing it.
I've been seeing this behavior by cinema employees A LOT lately, at all different chains, and all different size houses. Though I as yet have no confirmation, my feeling is that this is mandated by management, so as to make an employee presence felt in the auditorium. You know, to show that they care, or will be nearby if someone opens fire, to keep an eye on texters, or whatever the logic might be. At one local chain in particular about twice per movie screening an employee will walk up right beside the screen, mark up something on a clipboard, and then leave again, like it's one of those bathroom checklists janitorial teams are often forced to fill out.

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big ticket
Joined: Thu Jul 09, 2015 6:00 pm

Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#739 Post by big ticket » Sat Aug 20, 2016 8:28 pm

Raymond Marble wrote:
D50 wrote:In a regal cineplex 18 whathaveyou, I got to see Umimachi Diary (Out Little Sister) in a theater that I had never been (happened to be #2). I waited outside for the pre-trailer stuff to play out and entered at the show time. Sat at my usual 1/3 up from the entrance. I then noticed that the projected image was huge, and extending to every square inch of screen - a beautiful sight - so I got up and walked up / back to the last 3rd, and was good. About a fourth into the film the usher walks in on the left, starts walking up the side steps about half way, does an about face and then walks in front of the first row and the top half of her body actually cast a shadow on the screen blocking out the English subtitles as she's making her b-line for the exit in the front right, then walks up the right side steps about half way again, heads back to the front and once again walks right in front of the screen.

Unacceptable. And this is a theater employee doing it.
I've been seeing this behavior by cinema employees A LOT lately, at all different chains, and all different size houses. Though I as yet have no confirmation, my feeling is that this is mandated by management, so as to make an employee presence felt in the auditorium. You know, to show that they care, or will be nearby if someone opens fire, to keep an eye on texters, or whatever the logic might be. At one local chain in particular about twice per movie screening an employee will walk up right beside the screen, mark up something on a clipboard, and then leave again, like it's one of those bathroom checklists janitorial teams are often forced to fill out.
This is, basically, spot on -- primarily to curb cell phone use, but the "general awareness" factor seems to matter to some of your regular multiplex patrons. Employees are supposed to walk up and down the stairs in the larger houses, but in my experience, such an act has never obscured the actual field of projection, as one would basically have to walk to the top of the auditorium and make an attempt to put something -- hands and arms, broom, what have you -- in front of the "porthole." The clipboard-near-the-screen also seems to be relatively common around here. It's a bit of a bummer that these acts are necessary, as any human being walking in front of or alongside oneself or the screen is an immediate distraction, but it certainly beats having to put up with talkers and textures throughout a feature presentation.

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D50
Joined: Sat Sep 04, 2010 2:00 am
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Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#740 Post by D50 » Sun Aug 21, 2016 8:09 am

big ticket wrote:... It's a bit of a bummer that these acts are necessary, as any human being walking in front of or alongside oneself or the screen is an immediate distraction, but it certainly beats having to put up with talkers and textures throughout a feature presentation.
From my empirical observations, I would access the effectiveness of this practice of stopping talking and texting at below .5 percent.

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DrunkenFatherFigure
Joined: Sun Apr 20, 2014 9:40 pm

Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#741 Post by DrunkenFatherFigure » Tue Aug 23, 2016 5:04 am

I worked at a suburban Regal in 2006-07, and there was always one person whose assignment was to walk into every theater, go halfway up the stairs, count the number of people in the auditorium, and write the number on a clipboard. The goal was to enter each auditorium at least two times during each screening. Nobody ever reviewed the numbers you wrote, and I think the only purpose was to establish a presence in the auditorium, and to look like we were doing something important enough to warrant writing on a clipboard. Still, there was never any instruction of what to do if/when somebody was misbehaving, or what even constituted misbehaving.

As for credits, at our theater we at least wouldn't interrupt somebody who was watching them, but after the initial exodus somebody would usually go in to check if the theater was empty yet and occasionally come back complaining "ugh, two credit-watchers in there!" Then we would scratch our heads and wonder why somebody would ever sit for the credits, and occasionally consider going in to advise the viewer if there was going to be no post-credit sequence. It was sometimes an inconvenience for bigger tentpole-type movies with long credits, as we usually had a short amount of time to clean the theater before getting to the next one, and the long-credit movies were usually the ones that were packed, and took the most time to clean.

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D50
Joined: Sat Sep 04, 2010 2:00 am
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Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#742 Post by D50 » Tue Aug 23, 2016 8:13 am

DrunkenFatherFigure wrote: As for credits, at our theater we at least wouldn't interrupt somebody who was watching them, but after the initial exodus somebody would usually go in to check if the theater was empty yet and occasionally come back complaining "ugh, two credit-watchers in there!" Then we would scratch our heads and wonder why somebody would ever sit for the credits, and occasionally consider going in to advise the viewer if there was going to be no post-credit sequence. It was sometimes an inconvenience for bigger tentpole-type movies with long credits, as we usually had a short amount of time to clean the theater before getting to the next one, and the long-credit movies were usually the ones that were packed, and took the most time to clean.
For the most part, what keeps me seated during the credit roll is the music.

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tenia
Ask Me About My Bassoon
Joined: Wed Apr 29, 2009 11:13 am

Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#743 Post by tenia » Tue Aug 23, 2016 8:18 am

D50 wrote:
DrunkenFatherFigure wrote: As for credits, at our theater we at least wouldn't interrupt somebody who was watching them, but after the initial exodus somebody would usually go in to check if the theater was empty yet and occasionally come back complaining "ugh, two credit-watchers in there!" Then we would scratch our heads and wonder why somebody would ever sit for the credits, and occasionally consider going in to advise the viewer if there was going to be no post-credit sequence. It was sometimes an inconvenience for bigger tentpole-type movies with long credits, as we usually had a short amount of time to clean the theater before getting to the next one, and the long-credit movies were usually the ones that were packed, and took the most time to clean.
For the most part, what keeps me seated during the credit roll is the music.
Same here, I'm usually watching the credits to have a look at the soundtrack.

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thirtyframesasecond
Joined: Mon Apr 02, 2007 1:48 pm

Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#744 Post by thirtyframesasecond » Tue Aug 23, 2016 10:41 am

DrunkenFatherFigure wrote:I worked at a suburban Regal in 2006-07, and there was always one person whose assignment was to walk into every theater, go halfway up the stairs, count the number of people in the auditorium, and write the number on a clipboard. The goal was to enter each auditorium at least two times during each screening. Nobody ever reviewed the numbers you wrote, and I think the only purpose was to establish a presence in the auditorium, and to look like we were doing something important enough to warrant writing on a clipboard. Still, there was never any instruction of what to do if/when somebody was misbehaving, or what even constituted misbehaving.

As for credits, at our theater we at least wouldn't interrupt somebody who was watching them, but after the initial exodus somebody would usually go in to check if the theater was empty yet and occasionally come back complaining "ugh, two credit-watchers in there!" Then we would scratch our heads and wonder why somebody would ever sit for the credits, and occasionally consider going in to advise the viewer if there was going to be no post-credit sequence. It was sometimes an inconvenience for bigger tentpole-type movies with long credits, as we usually had a short amount of time to clean the theater before getting to the next one, and the long-credit movies were usually the ones that were packed, and took the most time to clean.
Surely you'd know how many tickets you'd sold and therefore how many were in the cinema - unless you were just catching waifs and strays who'd snuck in?

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dustybooks
Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2007 10:52 am
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Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#745 Post by dustybooks » Tue Aug 23, 2016 3:08 pm

thirtyframesasecond wrote:Surely you'd know how many tickets you'd sold and therefore how many were in the cinema - unless you were just catching waifs and strays who'd snuck in?
That's just it, though. My understanding is it's busywork / "security theater," an illusory thing similar to the "phantom pages" you hear at grocery stores. ("Security, scan and record Section A" when there is no security department, no Section A, and no way to scan or record anything.)

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RossyG
Joined: Sat May 30, 2009 5:50 pm

Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#746 Post by RossyG » Tue Sep 13, 2016 8:05 pm

I saw Ben Hur at the Brighton Odeon today. It was a 2-D screening, with a 3-D screening to follow, but I'm almost certain it was being projected through the 3-D polarised lense. Blacks were dark grey, whites were muddy and the screen had a grey tint on the left and right. It was distracting at times. I'm afraid presentation in my local cinemas isn't what it was. Once projectionists were in control and almost always took pride in their work. Now, managers just fire up the hardware before getting onto the main task of selling junk food in crackly containers.

(As for the film, after a dreary opening 30-40 minutes, it was actually quite compelling as a story, but there was way too much use of shaky cam, close-ups, and rapid editing. It's died the death at the box office. I nearly didn't bother with it as it was a remake of a remake, but overall I'm glad I did.)

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thirtyframesasecond
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Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#747 Post by thirtyframesasecond » Thu Sep 15, 2016 9:27 am

I was thinking the other day about who's got the most "and" or "with" credits in film - when you take a small, lucrative role or you just get annoyed because you've not got first/second billing. I decided it had to be Morgan Freeman - wonder what he must be on now.

HitchcockLang
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Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#748 Post by HitchcockLang » Tue Sep 20, 2016 8:42 am

I caught The Beatles: Eight Days a Week: The Touring Years at a nice little non-profit arthouse cinema in Columbia, SC called the Nickelodeon. It was my first time there and before the film started, a very friendly, very energetic employee came into the auditorium to introduce the film and expressed the strict no cell-phone and no-talking policy, which seemed much more effective than the usual PSAs before films that people tend to ignore. Suddenly, my usual theater anxiety relaxed and I thought, "Okay, this will be a good place."

People were absolutely on their best behavior during the movie itself--by far one of the most pleasant movie theater experiences with a nearly packed house I have ever witnessed. But then, the Shea Stadium concert came on (exclusive to cinemas and presumably a big selling point for many of the patrons who could have otherwise streamed the doc on Hulu) and it was like everything went out the window.

The house lights came up during the credits of the doc and then remained on for the entirety of the Shea Stadium footage and there was an obnoxious drunk guy who let out an earsplitting high-pitched WOOOOO!!! everytime The Beatles finished a song and a couple other people, feeding off his energy would clap loudly after every song.

I guess I understand they were trying to have some kind of immersive experience like they were really at the concert, seeing The Beatles perform live, but the majority of the audience was clearly annoyed and would have preferred a more subdued experience. I could have handled the clapping but it was the shrill hollering that really put me off and ruined my mood.

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RossyG
Joined: Sat May 30, 2009 5:50 pm

Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#749 Post by RossyG » Tue Sep 20, 2016 7:07 pm

Oddly enough, I had a similar experience at the Duke of York's Brighton (UK) today. I and a friend were one of a handful of "young 'uns" at a Silver Screen showing (aimed at pensioners but all welcome) and it had a few ageing hippies that made the odd remark during the film - irksome but not a massive problem - but this hubbub intensified during the Shea Stadium short. It was like they thought it was their own front room. This was three couples out of about 100 people, but bloody annoying.

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Cameron Swift
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Re: Movie Theater Experiences

#750 Post by Cameron Swift » Wed Sep 21, 2016 7:53 pm

I've never watched a concert film in a theatre, but it seems almost counterintuitive to expect people to sit there in silence and not "rock out". I mean, I'd find it annoying too, but I can understand the energy.

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