This past week, a friend went with me to see the new “Pirates of The Caribbean” movie. We have seen the entire series together since (a)nobody else we know will go with us and (b) we are both ardent Johnny Depp fans and think he’s adorable. I will qualify that by saying that he’s proven to be a bit of an arrogant SOB lately what with his illegally taking his dog to Australia and kicking up a big, typically privileged Hollywood star fuss. But he’s still cute and I love his Jack Sparrow prancing and exploits.
That got me to thinking about the movies I like to see and with whom I want to see them. Gill is the perfect partner for a kids’ film since she loves silly, childlike things. That’s why we saw “The Secret Life of Pets” and “Sing” together. But I will admit, I had to talk her into those. I think her reasoning for not wanting to go with me was that she knew I’d laugh myself witless and embarrass her — destroying whatever small shred of dignity she has left. (You’ll note I’m not worried about mine — that ship sailed years ago– perhaps when I took to wearing the turkey bonnet Gill brought me from Glasgow.) And true to form, I did and she was! I was practically sliding off my seat I was laughing so hard. Tears were streaming down my eyes– causing even the actual kids in the audience to look at me strangely.Gill was ready to disown me. But I had a great time!
I know The Man In My Life thinks I’m a bit nuts for enjoying such movies, which is why I won’t even ask him to go. But while in New Zealand this winter, we had occasion to babysit his grandkids one evening. In tried and true babysitter fashion, we thought watching a movie would be an easy out. So we watched, wait for it, “The Secret Life of Pets”! The kids and I were laughing throughout. And I have to credit My Man — he actually laughed a few times. I suspect, although on one level he thought it was silly, he secretly enjoyed it too. But I know my boundaries — I won’t suggest going to the movie theatre for such a film — unless we have the grandkids for cover!
I don’t do movies with subtitles. I blame part of that on my aging eyesight…bit it’s likely more a function of my brain not able to process reading and following the actions and actors at the same time. I can, like most women, multi-task with the best when it comes to chores or errands or other things domestic. But for some reason, I give up when it comes to following subtitles. The annoyance factor simply outweighs any enjoyment I might have with the plot. As Gill would say, “I can’t be arsed!” And since most films with subtitles tend to be ‘artsy’ or highbrow films, I have just outed myself as a complete Luddite. I freely and happily admit I go to the movies to be entertained, not to dabble in philosophy or pretend I’m thinking great thoughts. It all seems a bit phony to me.
On the other hand, a good comedy, ‘rom com’, or chick flick ticks all my boxes. Gill and Crazy D hate rom coms and most chick flicks. L’il Sis can often be coerced into seeing them. But Gill and Crazy D are not going with me to these films since they hate happy endings! Now how can anyone, I ask, hate a happy ending? We rarely see them in real life…it’s nice to be able to the somewhere. It keeps the hope alive.
I must commend The Man In My Life. He’s usually up for a decent ‘rom com’ or movies with happy endings.He’s a romantic at heart. Crazy D and Gill and My Man love summer blockbusters and anything that features car crashes, things blowing up, or Star Wars anything. I do not. L’il Sis loves dogs and animals in general but I pick very carefully such movies when we go together. If it’s sad or the dog dies, she’ll burst out in tears and possibly leave the theatre. She did for “Marley and Me”, our family movie choice one Christmas. It’s a long-standing tradition. But we were doomed. She left in tears just before Marley died…she couldn’t take it.I understand since there wasn’t a dry eye in the house, but by skipping the ending, she failed to see the new puppy that was adopted to succeed Marley. The cycle of life and all that. But I cut L’il Sis a lot of slack on that one. I recall crying for weeks after Pooch died and then again, a year ago, when The Pig went to the Great Doghouse In The Sky.
I suspect I’m showing my age now with my reluctance to watch all the space alien, fantastical scary creatures, and Game of Thrones films. I also refuse to see gory movies with realistic violence. There’s enough of that on the real news these days. If I want to be depressed or have nightmares, all I have to do is watch CNN Terror Central for an hour before bed.
So it’s not only the movie makers who have to ‘know their audience’…the movie goers do as well. And I feel certain that, when Gill writes her blog on this subject, she’ll begin with:”Never go to a movie with The Mom. She chatters all through it and ruins it for her companion.”
To which I say:”I only talk during the commercials and trailers.It’s my way of getting through the endless boredom of being a captive while the world advertises on me.”
I know this argument will end, just as Trump’s do, in a ‘she said; she said’ impasse.Where do you suppose I can find a ‘Special Prosecutor’ to act as judge? Perhaps, as The Great Orange One is hinting at firing Robert Mueller, he’ll be available soon.