Friday, January 09, 2009

When The Movie Going Experience Goes Bad

So I went totally insane the other night and decided to take the (late) evening off to catch a showing of Clint Eastwood's new movie Gran Torino. I got out a little late but I took back roads, avoided traffic and got to the theater five minutes before show time.

So. Showtime. Minutes tick by. But no Clint Eastwood! That's right, and since we're talking Gran Torino, there I was, sans Asian racial slurs (see the movie), NO guns (ditto), NO (*ahem*) ENTERTAINMENT! Fifteen minutes pass, the audience is restless and I've had it. So I head out to see what's what.

Turns out there's some sort of high-end screening next door (Notorious BIG) and evidently the movie people just forgot about the Clint fans. A few minutes later, finally the movie starts. Well, actually, the ads started. For the Marines. Some kind of hair-care product. And eventually (ironically), an ad extolling the virtues of the to-be-unnamed (*) theater chain itself.

But finally the ACTUAL movie starts. There's ol' Clint, being grouchy. Boy, his adult children and grandchildren are jerks! The stage is set, tension builds...

And that's when the earthquake hit. A 4.5 somewhere in San Bernadino, miles and miles away, but evidently when you're in a giant box on stilts it doesn't take much to get things shakin'. A couple folks in the audience bolted, but the movie was still going and by God, I was gonna see Clint draw down on his requisite number of gang creeps come hell or high water!

So I did. My mini-review: starts slow, fun middle, appropriate ending. That's right, it was a hell of an earthquake...

(*): Only unnamed in that paragraph! It was the Bridge Cinema at the Howard Hughes Center in Los Angeles.