So, you are wondering why is Steve O talking writing this down now. I have heard him and the gang talk about this on various shows before, so surely the word has spread to everyone at this point. I just came back from seeing Glass and I am here to tell you that word has not spread. Not by a long shot. This time it got to the point while still in the trailers where not only myself, but my wife Kristen was annoyed. We still had two hours to go. Two very long hours. I should give you a bit of background before I list the rules. I was a movie theater manager for years, so I have dealt with it all. You would think that over the years people would have gotten better, right? With comfy seats, reserved seating, pre-buying tickets, there was no need to rush or get there super early for your show to reserve your place in line. This is sadly not true, it has just gotten worse. With technology and even the nice new seats, there is a sense of entitlement. Almost like they think it is their group’s own private viewing and who cares about others. It is not. This is a shared experience and should be treated as such. It is important to note however that the below rules are more often followed when a “geek” movie is screened. These groups of people know when to cheer, gasp, and generally react to what’s happening. See below for the list, if I missed one please reach out to me and I will add it. You can always comment below.
Commandment #1 – Turn Off Your Cell Phone
Simple, turn off your cell phone once the previews start. Not on silent or just dim the screen. You might think no one can see you posing on Instagram but we cam and guess what? We do not care. If you need to be contacted it is easier now then ever before. With reserved seating leave your babysitter the exact seat numbers and phone number for the theater.
Commandment #2 – Do Not Talk During The Movie At All
This is not to say you can’t laugh or react to what is happening on the screen but if you need a full explanation in the middle of the movie of what’s going on, though. You should have been paying attention, save the questions for after it is over or wait because your question will most likely be explained by the end. This also includes you repeating what the character on the screen just said to make you sound smarter. We all know you are not and, in fact, makes you sound really dumb. Can you imagine after Darth Vader revealing he was Luke’s dad someone next to says ohh he is Luke’s DAAAAD. Yeah, we all just heard that. Thanks.
Commandment #3 – Smell Yourself
I can not believe I even have to put this one on here. You will be sitting in a closed room next to many people. If you smell everyone will know. If you smell so bad that someone behind you has to spray perfume to cover it, take the hint.
Commandment #4 – The Staff Is There To Serve, Not To Be Your Maid
Have you ever had to wait for a theater to be cleaned before they let you go in and take your seat? Well, it is because the people in the movie were slobs and did not pick up after themselves. The employees are not your maid and to say that out loud makes you sound ignorant. If you spill something by mistake it is understandable, but to leave your half-empty popcorn and drink when the trash is literally on your way out is just rude. This goes double for those who sneak in other foods such as subs or KFC ( I have seen these both) we know you do it just clean up. No one wants to pick up your half-eaten drumstick.
Commandment #5 – If You Have Already Seen The Movie, Do Not Pre-React
It is great that you went opening show first day to see you most anticipated movie and you want to share the experience with someone else. However, when you take that person and they have no clue what is going to happen and the people around you are in the same boat do not overreact or say something like “This part coming up is going to be good.” Well, it certainly would have been if you didn’t say that, jerk.
Commandment #6 – The Bathroom Break
It happens to all of us and sometimes out of the blue but it doesn’t have to be awkward. Politely get up with your bum facing the peoples’ faces. We can all agree we do not want to be staring at people as we run to the bathroom. an apology is not needed but if you feel the need a quiet sorry is ok. If you can dunk down low and try to go during a quiet spot do so, this is not always possible. In reverse, do not be the dick who won’t move their feet because this poor person has to go.
Commandment #7 – Your Feet Should Be On Your Seat
Do not use the other person seat in front of you for your footrest. This also goes for the people in the front row with a bar, it is very distracting.
Commandment #8 – How To Handle A Person Not Following The Rules
I have a hard time handling this the right way. I do it wrong and fully admit to it. Try not to shush people because you never know in this world what will set someone off. Get up and go see an Usher or a member of the management team. This is what they get paid for and honestly the love doing it.
Commandment #9 – The Movie Theater Is NOT A Babysitting Service
Do not drop off your kids at the theater to just hang out. Make sure they have enough money. Most importantly make sure they know if they cause any issues they will be in deep trouble. There is nothing worse than having a bunch of preteens not knowing to shut the hell up. If they do get kicked out make sure you understand why and lean toward the side of the theater crew. Kids lie and the staff has better things to do.
Commandment #10 – You Have Just Watched The Movies, The People In The Lobby Have Not
You just watched the latest Marvel movie and you want to talk about the end-tag. That is great! Just make sure it is not in front of people waiting to see that movie. You do not want to be “that guy” to ruin the experience for everyone else.
These are my Commandments, go forth and tell the people so we can all enjoy the night out. If you can not follow these wait until you can get them at home, no one wants you in that theater and you probably smell. Seriously take a shower.
– Stephen Operach