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A personal boycott

I just came back from seeing Alien Vs. Predator, and it was pretty damned good. The pacing was so off I would suspect the producers had ADD (the egg-facehugger-chestburster-Alien cycle seemed to take longer in the other movies), but I especially enjoyed the "tributes" to the earlier Alien movies -- the closeup on the terrified woman's eyes, the Queen hanging over the abyss, etc. etc. Definitely money well spent.

But I've seen my last movie at this theatre, or any others in their chain. Showtime was 11:50. I entered at 11:45, and there were COMMERCIALS playing. Not previews, COMMERCIALS. Ads for soda, candy, the new "Joey" show that's replacing Friends, a video game, and a few others I've blessedly blocked out. The commercials ran until 11:55. Then they ran the standard announcements and 9 minutes of previews. I can live with that, but when you add it up, that means the actual MOVIE started about 15 minutes after the listed showtime.

When the South Park movie came out, I went to see it. After three commercials, though, I walked out and demanded a refund. I never saw the movie on the big screen. I'd sincerely hoped the chain had come to it's senses, but it's now worse than ever.

I'm now announcing that there is no way in HELL I'll ever go to a movie and sit through commercials. There's a much nicer theatre just a bit down the highway, with stadium seating and no commercials. They're getting all my future business.

At home, if a commercial comes on, I can switch channels or read or do something else. In a theatre, there's virtually nothing else to do but watch 'em -- we are quite literally a captive audience. But this is one captive who's not going back into my cell. To hell with Hoyt's/Regal. They can soak some other poor sucker; they've seen the last of MY money.

J.


Comments (11)

JT, drop me a line and let ... (Below threshold)

JT, drop me a line and let me know who won. I probably wont see this movie for a few months.

Yeah me and my friends alwa... (Below threshold)
Joel:

Yeah me and my friends always get pissed off but I've never walked out because of the ads. What's really awful is the fact that the EXACT same 3-5 ads are attached to EVERY films.

looking forward to your convention coverage by the way.

If I were watching the movi... (Below threshold)

If I were watching the movia at a discount movie house - $1.00 shows or .50 shows - I would expect something like that; the movies are, afterall, a captialist endeavor and they need another profit-center to supplement ticket sales other than over-priced, greasy popcorn and colored sugar-water.

But, at the over-blown prices paid at today's movie theatres, you should probably get everyone to all stand up, face the back of the theatre, and start a chant of some sort for them to 86 the commercials.... yeah, good luck getting that to happen.

Regal started a deal with N... (Below threshold)
Jeff:

Regal started a deal with NBC/Universal for this thing called The Twenty to push their shows/movies - I first noticed it at a Regal back in the spring when I saw The Punisher. That movie theater started it a bit late.

When I saw Bourne Supremacy a couple of weeks ago at a Regal we waited around in the lobby and still went in 15 minutes before the movie started and the twenty was well underway with the lights down.

Apparently the local theaters are doing a crappy job of putting that together with their trailers (if you ever notice, half the trailers are done in-house the rest are attached to the movie)

Eh. Commercials are simply ... (Below threshold)
Jess:

Eh. Commercials are simply a part of the movie-going experience in this day and age of gazillion-dollar blockbusters. They have to recap the costs of production somewhere. Trust me -- that theater across town that doesn't show commercials is only going to last so much longer.

Yet another reason I've see... (Below threshold)
Paul:

Yet another reason I've seen maybe 5 movies in the last decade.

I am of two minds on the is... (Below threshold)

I am of two minds on the issue: I agree the movie house owner has the right, but it is getting to the point of over saturation, and as you suggested, people will vote with their feet (wallets) and maybe things will change.

Netflix, once considered a silly idea, now has direct competetion from Blockbuster.

As another has voiced, I haven't been in a movie theater in over 8 years -- saw 'Nemo' with my 8 year old at a drive-in, but that's the closest to a movie house.

Hmmm...Let me see if I unde... (Below threshold)
Vulgorilla:

Hmmm...Let me see if I understand this. My wife and I can go to a movie, pay $10 a ticket for two people which = $20, buy two large popcorns & two large sodas = $30, which is a grand total of $50 for the afternoon & and am required to sit through commercials which I unknowingly paid to see, OR I can wait for the DVD @ $20, pop my own popcorn and open a soda for about $2 bringing my grand total to $22, I can fast-forward through any previews and commercials, and I can watch it for however many more times I want to for nothing additional. I think the new commercialized practices of the movie houses has swayed me to never set foot in them again given the alternative.

With five in my family ther... (Below threshold)
Cometcruzer:

With five in my family there is no way I can ever afford to go to the theaters! Ever! Besides it only takes about 6 months for the movies I want to see show up at Blockbusters. It is worth the wait to me.

I was actually surprised by... (Below threshold)

I was actually surprised by how much I liked AvP as it was WAY better than Alien Resurrection IMHO.

Also, I agree about the ADD thing. I think it can be explained away, though. Not well, but it can be done.

I'm not really so upset abo... (Below threshold)
J:

I'm not really so upset about the commercials as long as the theater has an old-school arcade machine. The Georgia Theatre Company theater near my house has a Galaga/Galaga Remix/Xevious machine that's 50 cents to start and 25 to continue, and I can play that thing forever. Really, I'm in heaven if I can find a Raiden II machine, which is my all-time favorite arcade shoot-em-up, but Galaga Remix is pretty cool.

Regal has "The 20". AMC has "The Pre-Show Entertainment". GTC has commercials. I don't like it any more than you do, but the commercials do provide one service: if you get to the theater late, you won't miss too much of the movie.

I saw Garden State this weekend at AMC Phipps Plaza 14 in Buckhead (Atlanta). Once I actually found my way into the theater (it's like an Escher diagram -- you buy the tickets, then walk across the mall to the escalator and then back around a balcony to get to the concession area) it was five minutes before showtime, and they were showing the commercials. At 10:25 or whatever time the film was supposed to start, the lights dropped and they started the previews. Which is how it should be.

If you don't want to see the commercials, go into the theater a minute before "official" showtime. (The only time this hasn't worked is when I saw LOTR:FOTR, which they started at exactly 4pm.)

Play Galaga the rest of the time. It's cheaper than refreshments.




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