Recently I posted an opinion that Babies Do Not Belong In Movie Theatres after experiencing the disruption of having a baby cry throughout a movie. Now I should clarify that I don't hate kids and I don't hate parents- in fact I think that well behaved kids and responsible parents should be praised with a thousand voices. My strongly worded opinion was based more on theatre etiquette and the questionable wisdom of bringing a baby (ie a child too young to speak) to a movie theatre.
The response was immediate and vocal.
Here are some examples of actual comments sent my way.
1. A Slap On The Wrist
People without children don't get it: No one likes the sound of a crying baby, no matter how many children you have. You aren't on a 14 hour Greyhound trip to Phoenix to start a new life. It's a movie. Be a citizen, a neighbor; have some fucking compassion and don't put other people through that.
Ok that's a valid argument: besides, there is a possibility that someday it'll be my screaming baby, and I will look up and shout "Save Me" and you'll look down and whisper "No".
I accept your slap on the wrist and will endeavor to be more cognizant of the struggles of parents everywhere.
2. A Ruler To The Knuckles
Do you even understand how silly this post is? You were seeing an animated film! Families are the targeted audience and, families include babies!
"There was ONE goddamn row behind us. One. And we still had the full ear-splitting, chair-kicking obnoxious small child experience."
- so not just babies? small children as well? That can maybe, oh I don't know, eat popcorn?
You sound like an uptight yuppie! Stick to adult movies you whiner!
I we all think we would be better off in a world where no one disagreed with us, but, you know- freedom of speech and all that. If nothing else at least we both share an interest in strongly worded opinions.
3. Go To Your Room And Think About What You've Done
Bitch, please. You went to a CHILDREN'S MOVIE in the MIDDLE OF THE AFTERNOON. It's too bad they didn't kick you with that shitty attitude of yours right square in the head.
Next you'll be claiming hungry people shouldn't go to restaurants and sick people should stay out of hospitals. It makes about as much sense.
Well, a strong opinion deserves a strong reaction.
4. A Firm Spanking
First of all do the math. You went to a "CHILDREN'S" movie. Secondly you went to the matinee, aka, during the daytime. Expect there to be children, infants, moms who bring both, old people, and anyone else that sleeps early. Your own fault. Secondly you were a child at one point. A crying, annoying, snot faced, pants shitting, annoyance. The difference is when you were growing up people had some fucking manners and accepted you as a part of life. Now that you grow up you think you don't have to pay your dues? There's a reason the bible (no I'm not religious) says "Suffer the little children". It means children are annoying as shit, but fucking deal with it, you entitled piece of ego ridden excrement.
Ouch! Words hurt, you know. Do you kiss your kids with that mouth?
5. Catholic Guilt
1. If you don't have anyone to watch your crotch-dropping, stay home.
2. Find a sitter, or STAY THE F HOME.
3. You're an entitled b1tch mother without consideration for others or any sense of courtesy, vis a vis how your 'parenting' effects others, who've paid money to see the movie. Congrats. GFY.
Entitled mothers are part of the problem. Please, no one else cares about your sprog, unless it's making noise. Then it is a problem. Your baybee is not novel, not original, and not special. If your crotch-dropping is causing EVERYONE ELSE issues, then YES WE WILL TELL YOU WHERE YOU CAN AND CANNOT TAKE SAID CROTCH DROPPING.
Some of us aren't parents, and the only thing we'll understand from an experience with a mother like you is HOW NOT TO PARENT. You're doing it wrong.
We have no responsibility for your child & day care centers, babysitters, etc. BECAUSE IT IS NOT OUR CROTCH DROPPING. it's yours. So YES WE CAN BITCH.
Do the right thing. Leave your crotch dropping at home please.
What? I don't even... This one isn't even directed at me and I still feel like I should say five "Hail Mary's" and ten "Mea Culpas". Perhaps it's time to fetch the hose...
So what can we learn from this and how can I tie it back to movies? Well, first of all that having an opinion means being ready to stand out in the open as the tornado hits the pig farm and being willing to take the blowback.
And the blowback ain't pretty.
Just like opinions the best movies are the ones that get under your skin and make you feel something. Whether you love it or you hate it the important part is to feel something. I mean- look at the creativity that went into all of this: really you have to be impressed.
As a filmmaker I have a vested interest in audience members having a good experience at the movie theatre and as parents many of these commenters have a vested interest in still being able to attend movies even when accompanying small children and even babies. Maybe it's time for movie theatres to start offering childcare services for smaller children so that parents and non-parents alike can enjoy a movie without worry.
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