Movie theaters not ideal situation

By Kevin Wilson: Freedom Newspapers

I’m an economist and an idealist when it comes to explaining why I love movies but hate going to theaters.

For most movies, I reason, it’s more convenient to wait a few months and pay $20 to own the DVD and watch it at home any time than pay $15 for tickets, $10 for concessions, watch 20 minutes of previews for new Adam Sandler movies I don’t plan to see and listen to peoples’ cell phones and/or children being too loud.

Most movies, however, are not Clerks II. I had to throw ideals out the window when it came to the sequel to Clerks — a movie that showed me about the realism of adulthood, along with an intelligent discussion of the liability ramifications for construction workers working on the Death Star when it was destroyed in Star Wars, Episode VI (just watch).

I remember looking at the local movie listings for Clerks II two Fridays ago, and seeing that title nowhere on the list of movies showing in Clovis and Portales. It was then and there I planned a trip to see my friend Robert in Albuquerque. I knew Clerks II would be playing there, and he and his wife would be happy to go view it with me. Plus, I wanted to tell people I was visiting friends, not traveling seven hours to watch a two-hour movie.

I won’t spoil the movie at all for you, but I will tell you it is quite offensive. A few things I picked up, for example, were that (expletive deleted by editors) is not a racist term), older women were less likely to (expletive deleted by editors) and you might want to ask questions before you order an (expletive deleted by editors). You see what I mean?

I enjoyed the movie immensely and would recommend it to anybody who enjoys Kevin Smith’s other films. However, I’m still prone to tell people to wait for the DVD because I always find another reason not to go to theaters.

Can anybody explain:

• Why you can enter a movie with three empty rows ahead of you and three empty rows behind you, and people will still sit right by you? Robert and I were beginning to think a standard of restroom rules should apply — you know, always keep one unit between yourself and another occupant, don’t make conversation under any circumstances, etc.

• Why the theater shows a screen that says, “Please be quiet,” then follows it up with a series of movie previews so corny you have to tell fellow movie-goers how bad they look? I mean, I had to tell Robert about the lunacy of bad guys in martial arts movies — why do 25 people show up if they’re just going to attack him one at a time, thereby neutralizing any advantage from the numerical disparity?

• Why that couple took their two kids to see Clerks II, a movie that surprised its own director when it got an R rating instead of NC-17? As the offended parents left the theater with their two small children at the 40-minute mark, we wondered which of the jokes sent them packing. Was it the description of (expletive deleted) or the (expletive deleted) remark? I wish I had a video of these parents as evidence for the next time some parent complains about how television and movies are corrupting their children … you know, the No. 2 threat to children after bad parenting.

I’m glad I found the movie enjoyable, because movies have to get pretty good for me to withstand the annoyances of actually watching one in the theaters. Am I being too much of an idealist?

Kevin Wilson is a columnist for Freedom Newspapers of New Mexico. He can be reached at 763-6991, ext. 313, or by e-mail: