Recently, the movie theatres got uppity. For whatever reason, purchasing movie tickets on your phone and using the no-cellphone-in-the-theatre-equals-free-pop-corn app isn’t bougie enough. They had to be fancy and require seat reservations. I’ve heard many ringing endorsements of this new system. Reservations allow for people to arrive right on time and know where their seat is. Moviegoers can pick their optimal seating location. Theaters have to compete with patrons staying at home and pirating films online. Without much thought, these all sound like wonderful timesaving systems in our busy lives.
But, these are all lies.
The new norm for viewing the next blockbuster has flaws. The flaws might be difficult to notice when you are totally ensconced in a faux-leather chair. You can’t hear yourself losing your dignity when it sounds like two latex balloons being rubbed together when you redistribute your weight. Here are three reasons why the reserve seating system is the devil’s doing.
Reason #1: This Is America
During my most recent trip to the movies, a loving father dragged his adorable daughters up to the ticket window. It was an hour before the movie started. To his dismay, the only reserved seats left for the chipmunk movie he wanted to see was in the front row of the theatre.
What kind of world is this? The early bird should get the worm. Not the person who lazily purchased the tickets on their phone. Reserved seats should be scrubs seats only. If you want to get the prime location (middle seats in the row with the railing) then you should haul your happy butt to the theatre early and get the seats the old fashioned way, by mindlessly watching and re-watching the previews to the previews.
True Americans would abide by the life lesson: “If you ain’t first, you’re last.” If it is good enough for Ricky Bobby, it should be good enough for movie seating.
Reason #2: The Ex Factor
There are certain people in my life that I do not wish to watch a movie with. I don’t wish them ill. I just don’t want to spend two hours (three if it is a Tarantino movie) beside them watching a movie. This list includes, but is not limited to: all ex boyfriends, overly affectionate couples, people that look familiar, but I can’t remember their names and people who’s conversations were annoying in the concession stand line, therefore they will be annoying during the movie.
Now, imagine being forced to sit by one of these people during a movie. It’s not cool. There is no free will. Nobody likes being put in assigned seats in a classroom, why must we incorporate it into our adult lives?
Reason #3 Sister Wives
Movie theatres are intimate places. Intimate sounds kind of racy, but what I mean is that they can be dark and personal. When a movie is good, it’s just you and your ten-foot-tall-faced friends. You can wipe your greasy hands on the seats and blame any fart-sounding noises on the aforementioned leather.
It is a home away from home.
That being said, when I went to watch the sold-out showing of The Hateful Eight, by myself, I was discouraged to find out that my lone seat was in a row with just one man and two of his lady friends. I’m not alleging anything. Those could be his sisters, co-workers or book club members. But, there is something about reclining more than 90 degrees beside someone that is not your husband that makes you feel icky. I needed the “bro-buffer” seat. Now movie theatres are plush harems for relaxing next to strangers. I was forced to sit with my new sisters wives.
As I write this post, I feel very old and “get-off-my-lawny.” I suppose I should embrace the future. Sooner than later all our reserved seats will be Wall-e hover chairs. I suppose I should treat the matinee showing of Daddy’s Home like it is box seats for the Broadway production of Cats! and proudly sit in my assigned seat.
But, I don’t want to.
Deep down, I know that there’s a special seat reserved in hell for the devil that came up with this system.