So last night I went to see District 9 at the United Artist Court Street Stadium 12. If you’ve been to this theater, your probably already know where this is heading. This, after all, is the same theater where I’ve witnessed:
1) A family bring in a full Chinese takeout meal consisting of soup and noodles, which they slurped throughout the movie. Oh. The movie was “United 93.”
2) A woman bring in six kids under the age of 12 to watch “The Watchmen.”
Any rate, I thought I’d be safe. I was wrong.
District 9 surely would attract mostly hipsters, sci-fi geeks and social-media nerds convinced that Twitter was somehow responsible for the movie. Better yet, the movie was in heavy rotation and the feature I chose was all the way on the 11th floor.
So much for that. Twenty minutes early (yeah, I’m one of those guys) and the place is already getting packed. I take a seat in the far left aisle of the front row of the upper portion. Close enough to center, back far enough and plenty of leg room. And only four seats to that section of the row.
Ten minutes to go and a young black man walks in and sits at the opposite end of my row. I’m pretty sure I’ve seen him at other sci-fi flicks at this theater. He’s a Fan-Boy. Nothing to worry about.
Then in THEY come: Papa Bear and Mama Bear. Large and in charge and completely lacking inside voices. They plop themselves down between Fan-Boy and me, the lady next to FB and the husband next to me. I don’t know who has it worse. The woman is the main talker and she’s loud. The guy, though, is like 6’3″ and approximately the size of a house. They’re talking even as they walk in and sit down.
Sample conversation? “Here. Put your drink up in here. That’s what it’s there for. They didn’t have them cup-holders back in the day. Now they do. Yup. Cup-holders.”
I’m not making this up.
When the “coming attractions” start, the talking doesn’t. During this portion of the program, the guy does most of the talking.
“Nine. Nine. Oh-Nine,” he says, reading the release date of “9.” You know, because the rest of us can’t read.
“Legion,” he says, reading the title of “Legion.” You know, because … well, see above. “Legion,” he continues. “Legion of Doom. Nah. That’s a different movie. Legion.”
“Hey, look that’s what his name. Bruce Wilkins,” he says, during the trailer for “Surrogates.” “Nah, not Bruce Wilkins. Bruce. Bruce. Bruce. What’s his name. You know what I’m talking about. Bruce Willis! That’s it.”
“Oh, look. It’s my boy Woody Harrelson!” he says during the trailer for “Zombieland.”
At which point Fan-Boy gets up and walks to another seat.
“Look at that,” says the woman. “Guess he thought we were talking too much. It’s not like we’re gonna talk once the movie starts.”
That little bit of self-awareness gave me a little bit of hope.
You won’t be surprised to learn that it turned out to be false hope.
I don’t know what movie these two expected to be seeing, but it was clear they found it confusing and downright weird. The woman didn’t like the faux-documentary set up. She wasn’t sure what all those funny-talking Australian-sounding people were doing in Africa.
The man was hungry.
“Have a piece of that chicken,” she told him, pointing at the bag on the floor.
Then he burped. “Excuse me,” he said. He burped again, “Excuse me,” he said again.
And the whole time, she’s muttering about what’s going on in the movie. “That alien doesn’t know what an eviction notice is? Stupid.”
Just when I can’t take it any more. Just when I’ve decided I have no choice but to make a scene and tell them to shut up, a happy ending comes.
The woman decides she’s had enough of this “weird-ass” movie without a “point” and drags herself and her husband out of there.
Now, if only “District 9” had lived up to all the hype. … Fine, entertaining movie, but not exactly the second coming it’s been made out to be.