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Weird People at the Movies

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I went to go see The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3 at the Regal Meridian in downtown Seattle tonight with my buddy Tom. Tom, a college roommate and one of my best friends, is one who you should go to the movies with not at all, depending on your movie watching preferences. There’s nothing wrong with Tom, you see, but Tom has the strange ability to attract the crazies to the movie theater – so if you need peace and quite while watching a movie, he is not the guy to go see a movie with.

There was the time when we sat in front of the family of obese individuals who liked to kick our seats while eating loudly and breathing even louder in a very arduous, uncomfortable way. Sad, but true. Or when the guy a few seats down from us started talking on his cell phone in the middle of the movie. Or tonight, where we had not one, not two, but three different sets of weird or annoying moviegoers.

The first bunch was innocent enough. Two guys sat down practically right in front of us, and as box office results for The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3 suggest, the theater wasn’t exactly full. To make matters worse, one of the guys – the tallest guy, who had a clump of curly, oily hair – got up and then moved even more in front of us, forcing us to move down. Of course, that didn’t stop two other people – thankfully rather short people – from sitting down in front of us after the movie had started.

But everyone deals with people like this who are either unaware or just don’t care that it’s rude to sit right in front of someone else in a half-empty theater. However…

Things began to get weird when a big guy off to the side decided he wanted some candy… and no, not just any candy but his candy, the same candy that his girlfriend – whom he’d been fighting with before the movie started – allegedly had.

Twenty minutes into the film, we hear, “I want my candy.” Not a shout, but not a whisper. A few moments pass, and we get another, “I want my candy!” This time, much longer. After a couple more rather loud demands… er, requests… he apparently got his candy, because he shut up. The man later stripped down to a wife beater that was much too small for him. Apparently that candy made him sweaty.

On the other side of the theater, however, was where the golden gem of the evening was sitting. A man, probably in his fifties with white hair and slightly overweight, had bad circulation. At least, that’s what I can assume. Because every five minutes or so, he had to rub his hands together. Hard and fast, like he was warming them up. This hand rubbing – which was distinctly loud and heard all the way across the theater by everyone (even during the action scenes) – lasted for about 20 seconds and varied in velocity and intensity. Maybe he just liked the feel of his own skin.

Though rubbing of the hands is innocent enough, the man’s timing and dedication to such a habit makes him one of the weirdest people I’ve had the pleasure of watching the movie with. Even though there’s little comedy in The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3, he had Tom and I – as well as several other people in the audience – cracking up at the absurdity of it all. Who does that in a public place, repeatedly and oblivious to those around you?

What are your weird moviegoing stories?

By Erik Samdahl
Related categories: Miscellaneous
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  • Luke Baggins

    Hahaha nice story. The guy with the hands was hilarious. But the only recent thing I can think of was when I went to see Drag Me to Hell there were these obnoxious ghetto people behind us and during the scene where the blonde is getting thrown around her house they yelled, “Drag me to Hell? More like THROWN to hell!” I thought it was hilarious because of how funny he thought his joke was, but I guess everyone else was mad and a lady turned around and told them off which was even more distracting. And I told the story to another friend and he’s tried to see the movie twice with his girlfriend, but he left both times due to loud obnoxious(ghetto) people and got his ticket refunded.

  • http://www.filmjabber.com Erik Samdahl

    Luke, what are you talking about! That’s a hilarious joke! :o| I hate stupid people sometimes, especially ones who think they’re funny. You have to watch out for those ghetto people.

  • snickers

    Those kinds of freaks are part of the reason I haven’t been back to the cinema in about five years. I do all my movie watching from home now.

  • http://www.filmjabber.com Erik Samdahl

    @snickers They can sometime add to the experience. :o) But really, I don’t know how you do it… unless you’re only into art house films, some movies just aren’t as good on the small screen.

  • Francis

    So true this is a funny post and at the same time so accurate. i put your post up for a BoB award that could win you 1000 dollars.

  • http://www.filmjabber.com Erik Samdahl

    Thanks!

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