Whenever I go to ArcLight to see a movie, as long as I’m with a certain friend, we always buy their caramel corn in addition to their regular popcorn. We have this little routine that she came up with where we eat some of the popcorn first to get our fingertips a bit greasy. Once they’re sufficiently oily enough, we start munching on the caramel corn. One without the other would be just okay, but together they have an unbeatable synergy. I don’t know why it works and maybe it doesn’t entirely in the end, but it’s tradition and any trip to the ArcLight feels naked without it.
Another friend and I regularly see event films together opening night. After lining up hours in advance, as soon as they let us into the theater, we race in quickly make our way to the most center row. At the point we begin counting seats. As if just being comfortable in the centermost seats weren’t enough, we have to be positive that we are at the true middle of the auditorium. Maybe we just revel in the sightlines or maybe we get a certain satisfaction of seeing the faces of the next moviegoers arriving that look for the best seats in the house and find us in them.
Perhaps none is more important to me these days than of course, the theater listings. It used to be that I’d just get excited when I knew the actual times a new movie would be shown opening weekend. Like I care about times now. I want to know what’s playing where.
Again, sorry I’m spoiled. I get to see movies in Los Angeles so sometimes it can be an embarrassment of riches. But I love it! Whether it be Hollywood, Westwood or the countless treasures in surrounding neighborhoods, I gotta say, it’s pretty nice. Don’t worry though. I get slapped back into reality regularly too when I find that a big movie isn’t opening in any of the single-screeners. Then, yeah, I’m not so happy. Each Wednesday or Thursday though, it’s a wide open playing field full of possibilities(not entirely of course, due to the fact that one film will usually play at certain places depending on the studio, I can pretty much tell in advance. I try to convince myself otherwise though to keep the dream alive.).
Moviegoing rituals certainly bring us back into the theaters. They make it into an event and like one of the reasons we all visit this site, prove that it’s more than just what’s on the screen.
What are your rituals for the theater? Do you arrive at the theater an hour before showtime? Have any games that involve the pre-show slides? Come out with it! I can’t be the only one.
(Thanks to traveller2020 for providing the photo.)
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