I got thinking a few weeks ago about my most memorable trips to the cinema. Nothing kinky (unfortunately) but still, there have been some trips to watch films that I remember more than others.
As a kid, quite a few incidents spring to mind. One time me and my best friend Chloe got chucked out of our local flea pit The Rio, for throwing cans of coke around. We must have been about thirteen at the time. Unbelievably, this tiny cinema with only two screens and sofas instead of cinema chairs, is still going today. I went there recently in fact to watch The Inbetweeners 2 and Mrs Brown’s Boys D’Movie.
The guy who owns it used to let us watch literally anything we wanted, I guess out of desperation. The Rio still costs today what it did in 1999 – £3.00 (the average single cinema ticket in the UK costs £10.00) and if four teenagers wanted to watch a gory horror movie, who was he to stop them? And it was greatly possible that the four teenagers could be his only customers for the whole night so don’t chastise him too much.
Although having said that, does anyone else remember when A Clockwork Orange was re-released? It was around 2000 I’m sure. Well me and my friends had heard ‘good’ things about it so trotted off to our local to see it. The only cause for concern that the owner showed us was to say “well I don’t think you’ll like it much” – but he literally could not give a shit, he let us in!
In the year 2000 I would have been about fourteen. The only thing he was bothered about was whether we took in our own snacks. He’s REALLY funny about people taking their own snacks in. He searches peoples bags and everything. Recently I got ‘fined’ 20p for having half a bottle of Fanta in my bag whilst queuing for The Inbetweeners 2.
Of course all snide remarks aside it is still really cool that a cinema from 1931 is still going to this day – especially in my hometown where I grew up. Because let me tell you, there ain’t nothing else going on there (except heavy drug consumption obviously).
I recall another story when I was slightly younger and still going to the cinema with my dad. My parents were separated and I lived with my grandparents so I had the obligatory weekend trips out with my dad where we’d go to the cinema and eat McDonalds (bless him, he’s a good dad).
I remember one time and I wish I could remember the film (but I’d wager a guess at Titanic) – I felt someone kicking my chair intently. I was such a shy kid, I didn’t want to look round. But the kicking continued until I had no choice but to turn and face my enemy.
Two nasty looking girls sat behind me, both giving me an evil stare. They were just being typical
cunts kids I suppose, but it upset me at the time and I’ve never forgotten it. I turned back round and the kicking continued again, frantically in fact – but I was terrified so just steadily looked forward until they stopped.
This memory isn’t quite so good either, it contains an ex-boyfriend (urghhhh) and the embarrassment of having to walk out of a packed movie theatre – Basildon Empire on a Friday night – and I don’t like drawing attention to myself at the best of times.
So we were watching Saw 3, arguably the goriest of all the Saw movies. It starts off with a scene….you know what, I can’t describe it – here’s a picture:
So I tried to use a fairly tame picture, but you can hopefully see our lucky guy has chains attached to him by metal hoops. They’re all over his body, in the most painful places and the idea of ‘the game’ (yay I wanna play a game!) is that he pulls out the metal hoops, against the clock, to avoid being murdered in another unpleasant fashion.
Anyway, as Saw fans will know these scenes are pretty OTT and usually accompanied by fast camera movement and VERY LOUD music. Well my wussy ex-boyfriend couldn’t take it – three minutes into the film and he couldn’t take it! He whispered to me that he felt funny and we had to leave.
I was like, you must be kidding surely? I probably even laughed, thinking it was a joke. But cut a long story short, we did end up leaving, half way through this very scene. And I felt like a right twat, convinced that everyone would think that it was ME – the pussy little girl – that was terrified of fake blood and heavy metal music.
Happily I went to see the movie a week or so later with my friend Marie. We then made it our Halloween date for the next four years to watch every sequel. Here come the girls!
So my next memory is the most recent. In 2008 I went to see Gran Torino.
Nothing particularly remarkable about this except I went with my grandad and it was the first time we’d been to the cinema together – ever! I was 22 and he was 68. Now my grandad is a great, great man. And to be a great, great man who do you idolise? Clint Eastwood of course (or Steve McQueen….or Charlie Bronson….or even Jack Nicholson).
But mainly Clint Eastwood.
My grandad introduced me to Spaghetti Westerns and Dirty Harry and when I reported that Clint Eastwood was bringing out a new movie where he turned vigilante-hard-guy once again, my grandad actually agreed to come and see it at the cinema. It was nice sitting there with him, listening to him laugh at Walt’s growling and straight talking attitude.
The only mistake we made was by not realising it had a super sad ending. We weren’t ready for it – I was still crying as we left the cinema and my grandad swore he would never watch it again. He loved it, but the ending definitely depressed him way too much.
But talking of crying in the cinema, we’ve all done it right?
When I was twelve, me and my friend Emily went to see Armageddon. We went to another small, local cinema in a neighbouring town which has since closed down. The Flix only lasted about ten years I think.
Anyway – wow that film made me cry! In my little twelve year old mind, Bruce Willis sacrificing himself for the life of Ben Affleck was THE MOST IMPORTANT THING EVER.
And the cringe-worthy scene where he appears on screen to ‘Gracie’ saying he’s gonna have to break his promise and not come home is burned into my memory forever, perhaps even the retina of my eye I remember it so clearly.
Anyway, I ended up running out of the screen (probably just as Aerosmith started playing) and dashed to the toilets. Legendarily, that was where Emily found me – crying, in the toilets, wailing between sobs “I…love…Bruce….Willis”. And I still do to this day.
And on that note, we’re pretty much at the end of my cinema memories. So I’ll end this post with the first movie I can actually remember watching in the cinema – The Little Mermaid.
My nan took me to see it. It came out in 1989 so I’m assuming that’s when we went to see it – I would have been four or five years old. I actually do have vague memories of her sitting next to me snoring but that’s about all I remember. It’s a sad memory in some ways as my nan died a while ago but it’s also a sweet memory of us going to the cinema together, particularly as it was obviously a film that I wanted to see and out of kindness she must have taken me. She was notorious for falling asleep (and snoring) as well.
Least she had a nap I suppose. And it remains my favourite Disney movie ever – it always will be.
There are other incidents of course, but sadly in the rude world we live in it today it seems it is perfectly acceptable to talk through the movie, eat KFC through the movie, giggle through the movie (that isn’t supposed to be funny), smoke cigarettes through the movie, giggle at the fact you’re smoking cigarettes through the movie, translate the language to your foreign friend through the movie, cough during the movie and ask many, many questions in a loud voice during the movie……all of these are standard displays nowadays.