Tuesday, 19 January 2010

Cinematters: The Sequel

People chatting in the cinema isn't my only bugbear. Even popcorn can be a bit of a nuisance.

Last week my friend Steven and I Orange Wednesday-ed it up and went to watch The Road. Let me tell you something: The Road is the quietest film EVER (Castaway is probably the only thing I've seen with less noise). I would advise you not to purchase any loud foods if you're going to see it. I could hear Steven munching his popcorn and was aware that the entire cinema could too. When holding a finger to my lips didn't have the desired effect I decided to keep the box out of his reach (much to his annoyance) until the loud bits came on, which were few and far between. I'd like to say I enjoyed the film but the chomping and the whining child actor were too distracting. Perhaps the boy is endearing when you're fully focused on the film but all I wanted to do was tap the little fellow on his shoulder and say “Look, you've been travelling around for ages, why are you still whinging about it? And why do you keep calling your dad 'Papa'? You're not from Little House on the Prairie though you do look a lot like the younger of the two girls in it.” I feel that would have told him. Instead I had to endure his wetness and the seething, popcorn-resenting cinema goers.

Taking advantage of the fact my Cineworld card is valid until the end of January, and that Steven gets his petrol paid for by work, we went to see Avatar on Friday night at a Cineworld in Castleford. I'd heard amazing reviews but am often left disappointed by hype so only really went to see it because I felt it wasn't something that should be seen on a small screen. As we wandered past the food counter Steven said, “That mixed popcorn went down a storm the other night.” Now he's always going on at me about my terrible comebacks (he has a point – improvisation is not my forte) so what happened next was like something out of a bible story. Without pausing I replied, “Yeah, it sounded like one too.” And I know it's frowned upon to do so but I burst into laughter at my own wit. Sadly he hadn't heard what I'd said and asked me to repeat it but I couldn't because I was laughing so hard. Finally I managed to calm the laughter (and snorting) long enough that I could tell him. He didn't get it so I had to explain: “When you were eating it, it sounded like a storm because it was so loud.” Of all the times someone could decide not to hear me it had to be the time something good came out of my mouth but at least someone laughed (not sure if it counts that it was me).

Thankfully no one was talking during the film and it was loud enough that no one was irritated by the popcorn munching. Asda Extra Special Belgian White Chocolate & Strawberry Popcorn Clusters, £1.48, if you're asking. So amazing I was at times distracted from the film. Beats the £10 per mouthful that they charge for the often burnt cinema stuff, don't you think?

And I was pleasantly surprised by Avatar - it was truly moving and a visual delight. I can see why people have become depressed after seeing it. It reminded me of the animated film FernGully - a side effect of which, like Avatar, must have been depression if my melancholic moods since seeing it as a child are anything to go by.

Oh, to live in a magical world where the shrubs light up and people keep their gobs shut when a film is on.

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