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Thursday, 3 May 2012

Avengers entertain kids in the creche.

Is getting annoyed at kids in the cinema a sign of creeping old age?

Kel and me went to see the ultimate superhero movie Avengers Assemble yesterday and were blown away with it, but prior to the film starting I could feel the tension build up in my neck and shoulders as one small lad clambered over chairs and chattered away randomly, while for the first twenty minutes of the actual movie another started a drum beat on the back of my chair with his feet.
I was close to telling the comic book nerd sitting behind me with his kid that it wasn't a bloody creche, and if he was that desperate to see the film then he should have hired a babysitter.

When I took my kids to the cinema no one ever had to ask me to keep them quiet, or glare at me because they were kicking the backs of people’s seats.
It takes seconds to explain to them that they are not in their own home and that the cinema is not a playground.
If for some reason they can't participate in watching the film without swinging on anything swing-able, crying halfway through it in boredom, or leaving their seat to do laps of the cinema then the solution is DON'T TAKE THEM.

To be fair the lad who was clambering over chairs was told by father calmly and reasonably that once the film started he had to sit in his seat and watch it.

It's to his credit that as soon as the film did begin he followed his fathers instructions and did sit and watch it all from start to finish.
That sort of parent and child are welcome to sit in front of me, behind me, or to either side of me at any film.
Unfortunately the kid behind me couldn't manage to go for the count of ten without either kicking my chair, or putting pressure on and it and pushing it forward.
Well maybe he could have if his father had told him not to, but not a single word was uttered by him.
Useless parenting.
I looked around a few times as his son booted my chair.
We all do that don't we?
It's the opening salvo in trying to draw attention to your displeasure.
In doing it we hope that the parent or child will click onto the action/reaction part of it.
The equation is simple. You kick my chair + I glare at you = Don't kick chair.
Words aren't really needed.
It didn't work though.
In the past my next step would be to say something, but now I would rather just avoid the confrontation and very obviously just move seats.
When I say very obviously I mean VERY OBVIOUSLY.
It's the whole shebang of the panto sigh and the snatching of the jacket accompanied by a glare or a stiff back is used to air my disappointment at a child ruining my cinema experience.
Some may consider that harsh, but for two adults it's anything between roughly fifteen and twenty quid for the cinema depending on where you want to sit.
It's an expensive couple of hours at the best of times without having to sit in the vicinity of a hyperactive child with kiddy tourettes.
Every second word is bum or jobby.
I'm not going to complain about this if it was a showing of Happy Feet or the latest Disney cartoon as these films are for that age group, but why is anyone taking a kid of four or under to a 12a rating.
It must be rare that it is because the child wants to see it.
More often than not it will be because the parent wants to see it and has failed to cover child care.
Save your cash and get it when it is out on DVD for a fraction of the price.
Have your offspring climb all over you as much as you want in the privacy of your own home.
That would be my suggestion to them if they can't find the time to go and see a movie without having to bring their kid with them.
Maybe cinemas should provide one showing a day that excludes kids of that age.
An acquaintance down in England says local cinema already does it and that shows that there is a demand.
I'm not actually against kids going to the cinema, or it being a family day out.
What I'm against is poor behaviour that impacts on other enjoyment of others.

Maybe I come across as a bit of a curmudgeon here, but if so then I'm poorly expressing myself and giving a false impression.

All I'm saying is come along and enjoy the film, but don't ruin my enjoyment of it for others.
Then again, maybe I am just getting old and can't be bothered with being annoyed.


  1. Well said! D.

  2. Well it would be easy to see it as some sort of swipe at the kids, but I hope I made it clear enough that it's not.
    I hope some parents read it and think 'fuck. He could be talking about me at the cinema with my kids and he's right. Better get a grip.'