Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Movie Goers Complaining a Lot this year

The Artist: Bérénice Bejo and Jean Dujardin

First it was the "Tree of Life" where patrons of Avon Theater on Bedford Street in Connecticut not only derided the film for being unfocused and dragging, but also demanded there money back. The theater's response? Placing a disclaimer citing the following: 

"In response to customer feedback and a polarized audience response from last weekend, we would like to ... remind patrons that the `Tree of Life' is a uniquely visionary and deeply philosophical film ... it does not follow a traditional, linear narrative approach to storytelling," the message read.

The customers did not get their money back despite the complaints. 

Then a few months later, "Drive" became the next target for complaints. Sarah Deming of Michigan (to be sure), decided that the movie's trailer misled her to believe the film had more action; and unsatisfied (and apparently offended as well), she decided that it was only logical to file a lawsuit (for a movie ticket?). She filed it on September 27. 

These were her logical issues with the film: 

– Drive was promoted as very similar to Fast and Furious, when in actuality, it wasn’t. (I don't remember Fast and Furious being brought up at all in the trailer). 
– “Drive bore very little similarity to a chase, or race action film, for reasons including but not limited to Drive having very little driving in the motion picture.” (The opening sequence never happened. Or maybe this lady came in late?)
– “Extreme gratuitous defamatory dehumanizing racism directed against members of the Jewish faith.” (Really? There have never been films that attack or portray other cultures and religions in negative light?)
And now it seems that "The Artist," the critics darling, is taking some heat for not having any dialogue. This coming from the British where some Odeon Cinemas are hearing complaints because "The Artist" has no dialogue. 
And now to rant a bit. 
Granted, not everyone is going to love every film out there, but I was under the assumption that with the ability to access information almost instantly anywhere from phones, wireless internet virtually anywhere, etc. people would have the sense to know that if they are going to go and spend their well-earned $12 dollars (the movies aren't cheap), they would at least educate themselves on how they will spend their money. And if they don't know what a film is about, then ask before throwing it away at random. I imagine people go to the movies to enjoy themselves. If you know nothing about what's playing, wouldn't you want to maximize the probability that you would enjoy the movie by asking the ushers or movie theater staff what the movies are about before spending money on them? And don't just ask one, ask two people if they're there. They usually have nothing better to do behind the ticket booth or popcorn stand. 
What's even more baffling is that people are asking for their money back. Since when is there no risk involved with any sort of investment whether it be entertainment or professional or personal? People go to all kinds of spectacles and presentations knowing full well that they may not like it. I go to the opera (40 bucks a pop by the way) knowing full well that I might not like the production, or the singers might be terrible, or the music boring, etc. But that's the risk involved with that kind of business. And by the way, despite the criticism some of these companies take from audiences for their poor productions, etc. people don't generally ask for their money back there either. 
One argument might be that the economy is bad and people want to protect their money. Not everyone has internet; not everyone has access to information (though I do believe libraries are still functional and they too have internet connections). If this is the case then read my first ranting paragraph. There is simply no excuse. Or simply don't go to the movies and instead spend the money on rentals, etc

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