Chris Walsh (chris_walsh) wrote,
Chris Walsh
chris_walsh

IS IT SO HARD TO WATCH A FILM

Yes! I have finally seen on a big screen 1980's Flash Gordon, the intentionally ridiculous and brightly-colored film that didn't do well in the U.S. at first because maybe people expected it to be Star Wars and not "pulp by the head writer of the Adam West Batman, oh and there are people dressed as lizards but with faces in their mouths, and Queen is singing and playing over the action, and there are little people one of whom literally plays a pet, and there is dialogue like 'I love you, Flash, but we have only 14 hours to save the Earth!' and much of outer space looks like rock shards, Nerf balls and chemically-colored clouds" ...in other words, a completely different kind of weird than Star Wars-weird which didn't do well until audiences figured out "Oh: this is meant to be ridiculous." (European audiences "got it" much more quickly.) Flash Gordon is a cult film now, one that's earned its following.

I saw it last night at the Academy Theater in Montavilla, smiling and laughing through much of it. The Academy is showing a wide variety of vintage science fiction for the next few months, and this got me to the theater. And there was some other guy. Right behind me.

I should have realized he'd be trouble when he kept "joking" about peeing in public. "Joking" is in quotes because he simply mentioned it, then acted like the simple idea of peeing in public is funny. He talked about doing it then suggested one of the people he was with do it and he seemed a little fixated on doing it and...

He and the two others he was with were "joking" during the film. But it was more like saying "Thanks, James Bond" when future James Bond Timothy Dalton was on-screen, stuff like that. Matter-of-fact. Not funny at all.

I should have moved. I should have said something, but I didn't have what I should have, which is a ready thing to say when people are talking in a film. Would a "quiet" or "shhh" backfire? Would he have doubled down, knowing he'd annoyed me? All these years I've been going to films, years of wannabe-MST3Kers thinking they're being funny when they almost never are, and I still have trouble asking people Not To Do That. I did my best to ignore him and his friends instead. Which I shouldn't have to do.

Still a fun film, but c'mon, people.
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