It rained again up here yesterday, so we took the boys to see Despicable Me at a local cinema. It was definitely a retro experience, a lot like I remember the movies of my childhood. The theater itself was a simple cinder block structure, hung with some heavy velveteen drapes on the wall. The floor was poured concrete and the seats were no frills-- sensible upholstery over modest padding. They did not go all the way down to the screen, thus preventing that unpleasant neck-craning that is sometimes unavoidable if you arrive late to a popular show. It only cost us $27.50 for all five tickets-- twenty dollars cheaper than it would have been at home. The concession stand was also quite reasonable-- six bucks bought a small drink, a small popcorn, and a box of candy. The small drink really was small, too, far less than the 32 ounces they customarily serve in the theaters near us.
We sat back and watched the trailers, and then just as the feature attraction was to start, the lights came up and the manager announced from the rear of the theater that there was "a situation." We exchanged bemused looks. It turned out that 50 kids from a Y Camp were on their way to see the movie, too, and the manager wondered if folks would be willing to move forward to free fifty seats together. "The kids will really appreciate it," she said. Our audience was quite willing to oblige, so they held the movie, and the kids were seated in a little more than five minutes.
Somehow, I just can't see that happening at home.