Well, without me realizing it, those types of theaters had finally sprung up in my town but I only wish I'd known about it beforehand.
My girlfriend and I were going to see the
Rim sequel (which, by the way, turned out to be much better than
it had any right to be). Because of a previous appointment we ended up going to
a theater that's usually a little out of our way and not one that we attend
frequently. While buying our tickets we were confronted with the fact that we
had to choose our seats. We'd been confused because a couple right in front of
us trying to purchase tickets to another movie had left without going inside. We quickly discerned why. For the screening of the
movie we wanted to see there were only two
seats still available that were actually right next to each other. All other
seats in the theater were singles meaning that we were the last couple in
attendance that could sit together. If we had been unable to get seats right
next to each other my anger would have been off the charts and I doubt we would
have gone to see the film. Even without that barring our rare chance to go to
the movies I was still peeved that things could be so poorly managed as to turn
away customers in such a stupid way. After buying our tickets and realizing
just how irritating I expected this experience was going to be we proceeded into
the cinema and learned very quickly that it was only the first problem we would
One of the larger problems with going out to see movies is that you have to do so in a room with a bunch of strangers. Ordinarily this isn't a big deal but on occasion you end up accidentally seated near idiots. In general I'll inform overly talkative folks that they are not in their living rooms and no one else cares about what they have to say. That approach works fine with most simpleminded dimwits but not always. In such cases you have to get up and move away from the brain-dead word vomiting dolt. You see where this is going, don't you?
Yes - Problem number two with this new type of theater seating is that if you end up seated next to babbling morons you cannot simply get up and move to another seat. You have bought one particular seat and one particular seat only. In most cases - as in ours - there are no other seats to move to. You are screwed! You're going to sit next to that chattering dullard or whining child or clueless cretin for the entire film. Period. So, I had to endure sitting next to a dunce who had to give me and all around her an intermittent recap of the action onscreen. So my enjoyment of the film was sporadically disrupted by such trenchant exclamations as "Oh! Look at that! He slid in there!" or "He ain't going in there!" or "He's the bad guy!!" There is not a room in Hell hot enough for this level of transgression.
Needless to say, I spent the entire running time of the film trying to suppress my desire to strangle this moronic chair barnacle. That I am not in jail currently speaks volumes about my strength of will. Or my fear of prison.
To sum up - I'm not sure I'm going to enjoy the move toward fewer but more comfortable seats in theaters. The downsides are many more than I had anticipated and the intelligence level of movie going crowds show no sign of improving. I'll have to be much more choosy in the future and, although I'm sad to say it, there are places I will no longer patronize. I have to be able to move far enough away from the idiots to enjoy the film. Time to go back to the Drive-In!