Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Inside Man (16May06)

Obviously, after more than a year, we're finally getting good at this Cheap Theater thing.

This week, we had other things to do before the show. Paul's summer hockey season is about to start, and his skates were horribly dull. So we decided to eat an early dinner, go to the hockey store to get the skates sharpened, and head straight to The Cheap Theater from there. We narrowed our selection down to three movies -- two that started around 7 and one at 7:30 -- and we'd make our final decision based on how long the skate sharpening took.

By the time we pulled into the parking lot, we still had enough time to catch the earliest movie. Are we good, or what?

The parking lot was shockingly deserted this week. For that reason, I was stunned by the number of people milling around the lobby once we got inside. They must have all come in one very large and very crowded bus. There were lines at the concession stand, and there were small children buzzing around like a pack of over-caffeinated gnats (making me glad that we'd decided against seeing Curious George this week). Paul stopped to go to the little boys' room, and as I waited for him, I watched the line to the ticket-ripper go from just a few people to almost out the door. I looked, but there was no old guy in vinyl hooker boots -- though there was an old white man with a gigantic black afro.

I'm guessing that the ticket-ripper was new. He definitely wasn't Derek, our usual ticket-ripper, and I don't recall seeing this kid before. Not only that, but he looked a little frazzled. After a while, one of the managerial-looking guys (who was still definitely much younger than I am) took pity on him and helped him out.

Again this week, we were in The Big Theater -- and it was already filling up. We barely got back-row seats -- and by the time the movie started, the place was pretty packed. Among the last to arrive were three young men who took the seats in the row ahead of us. The one who sat directly ahead of me was especially tall and gangly, and he wore what looked like his dad's suit coat. He sat up nice and straight -- and I spent the opening part of the movie trying to shift in my seat to find a position where

(a) I could see most of the screen, despite the kid's tall, spiky hair and gigantic ears


(b) I wasn't too close to the guy next to me, who was whispering questions to himself (like "Who is the Bard?").

(Just for the record -- that guy wasn't Paul. He was on the other side. And he knows who the Bard is.)

Inside Man is one of those suspenseful, action-packed movies that's so captivating that people in the theater actually shut up and pay attention. Well, most of them, at least. The young man on the inside end of the row ahead of us was apparently the kind who couldn't shut up if his life depended on it. The kid had Dork In Denial written all over him.

You know who I mean...that guy in high school who was totally uncool, yet he acted like he was the prom king. Thick glasses. Hair that always looks like it's at least a month overdue for a cut. Looks down on everyone -- and rolls his eyes whenever someone else speaks. Has been known to wear white socks and flip-flops. Laughs a little louder -- and a little longer -- than necessary. Hangs out with tall, gangly guys with spiky hair and big ears (who, in his own quiet way, is actually way cooler than his obnoxious friend). Cinematic example: Farmer Ted from Sixteen Candles.

Anyway, the Dork In Denial ahead of us thought he was being totally cool by chuckling loudly and condescendingly (punctuated at the end with a loud sigh) at random points in the movie. Then he'd excitedly whisper something to the guy next to him. My educated guess, based on my extensive experience with DID's, is he was pointing out miniscule, insignificant inconsistencies in the movie.

In fact, I'm pretty sure he's one of the guys who reports things like:

In the scene with the stuffed rhino, you can see a brief glimpse of the tip of a microphone as George says, "Have you seen my stuffed rhino?"

for the "Goofs" page on IMDb.

Guys like this one, despite being out of high school for years, still think they're way cooler (and smarter) than the rest of us. But, sadly, they still have nothing better to do than criticize the hard work of other people (other people who, incidentally, can probably get a date for the movies).

But anyway...I was, fortunately, able to tune out the DID for most of the movie. And I really liked it. So did Paul. And so did the cute little old couple who walked out of the theater ahead of us. Perhaps that makes us all less brilliant -- or less observant -- than the guy ahead of us. But I don't care.


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