Movie theater tosses texting teens

posted by Michael Zoldessy on September 28, 2006 at 1:15 pm

ARLINGTON, TX — Looks like there is some justice in this world yet. Two teenagers were thrown out of a theater, just for texting!

A local movie theater is in the spotlight after kicking out a group of teenagers for sending and/or receiving text messages inside one of its auditoriums.

The AMC 24 in Arlington Parks Mall used police officers to escort the teens from the theater during the weekend.

Did they go too far?

For more, visit NBC5.

Comments (102)

scottfavareille on September 28, 2006 at 1:33 pm

I applaud the manager & the crew of the above mentioned theater. If the youths don’t want to watch the movie, then they should go elsewhere. I find it irritating for those who have to even use a cell phone in a theater.

schmadrian on September 28, 2006 at 1:53 pm

I second that.

If cinemas want to ensure their patrons keep coming, they have to take more responsibility regarding the ne'er-do-wells. Lord knows these miscreants aren’t getting more considerate as the years march on. (The audience members, not the cinema owners.)

hotwaterbottle on September 28, 2006 at 2:18 pm

I agree totally. Seems like these kids are treating a theatre like it’s their living room, therefore they can do whatever they feel like. Show ‘em a little Texas justice – bounce their asses on the sidewalk! Now if only more theatres had policies like this….

schmadrian on September 28, 2006 at 2:23 pm

I don’t think most cinemas/chains realize how much they’ve contributed to more and more people being fed up with what they have to contend with. I don’t think they’ve ever grasped the importance of them ensuring a proper viewing experience for those who want to watch a movie in silence, because they’ve never been forced to recognize when people just stop coming. They tend to blame drop-offs in attendance to the menu Hollywood is providing at the time.

Good to see that someone’s aware of the potential cost of these boors in the audience. Hurray!

alex35mm on September 28, 2006 at 4:06 pm

I always inform people that with stadium seating everyone can see your phone behind you, whenever I can catch them. My fellow managers believe it’s a waste of my time though. I can’t stand seeing it from the porthole. I think overall in this country and industry there is a complete lack of showmanship, whether it be bad lighting installed in the auditoriums that can’t fade when the previews are started or having the lights fade and being bombarded with 10 minutes of ads. I think the fact that most theatres, at best have an overall poor presentation in general due to throwing people up in the booth with virtually no training what so ever is a lot more noticeable then the higher ups at these large chains believe. When the movie is dirty, focused poorly and splices are distracting it hurts the experience and the magic.

I’ve worked at over 10 theaters, for all different chains at new and old theatres and it’s the same everywhere I go. Not to toot my own horn, but I try to do what I can, I things do look better but I’m beginning to believe this is a loosing battle. Something really needs to charge from up top.

TxtMsgOhNoooooesss on September 28, 2006 at 4:17 pm

Lol, you guys are retarded. I mean it was a text message, not a board conference via the phone. Unless they had their phones buzzing and making noises when they sent/received a text I see no problem in people doing that.

They paid for the movie just as much as you did. Get over yourself. You act like just because you paid for admission you own the place. Texting is far from disruptive behavior. You want to “toot” your horn, throw people who are talking during a movie.

Just like your average policemen, the managers had nothing better to do than bust some teenagers. Go out and get the people that are causing serious trouble.

schmadrian on September 28, 2006 at 4:23 pm

Ah, Mr Subtle, but it starts with incidents like this. The thin edge of the wedge, as they say.

(Did we have one too many bowls of CrankyFlakes this morning? (Maybe with some WiseAcre sprinkles on top for good measure?)

Ron Newman
Ron Newman on September 28, 2006 at 4:27 pm

Doesn’t text messaging cause the phone’s screen to light up? Not a good thing in what is supposed to be a dark theatre.

scottfavareille on September 28, 2006 at 5:22 pm

Some phones make beeping noises when text messages are sent.

ggates on September 28, 2006 at 5:34 pm

Nothing new under the sun. We used to throw out kids for drinking beer in the theatre. That was in the late ‘70s or early '80s. I think Saturday Night Fever or Animal House was playing. The kids were quiet about it too, sneaking the cans into the auditorium under their coats. During the show, we’d prowl the aisle, flashing the floor under their seats with our flashlights, as they watched the picture. By the end of the shift, we’d have a couple of six packs confiscated, that we could drink ourselves out in the parking lot. No wonder everybody in town wanted to be an usher!

Michael R. Rambo Jr.
Michael R. Rambo Jr. on September 28, 2006 at 5:40 pm

At my theatre, we will throw someout if:

1: There was a complaint from another guest about them
2: If they are Under 17 and sneaking into a R-rated film

The only time my theatre will use police force if the person getting thrown out is either drunk or stoned, or if there was a fight in the theatre.

GaryParks on September 28, 2006 at 6:01 pm

I applaud the theatre in throwing the kids out. I agree with the majority of the posters above as to the reasons why. One of the reasons (though by no means the only reason) we have these kids who behave so sloppily is that they are the offspring of those who were of the hippie and immediate post-hippie generation, and the over psychoanalized child-rearing trends which followed it. I believe in what that generation wanted in terms of peace and environmentalism, and by all means applaud the recent out-in-the-open intolerance of actual ABUSE of children, but my very loving parents taught me about both trust and OBEDIENCE. Nowadays, the latter word is only applied to pets, or to adults engaging in certain private consentual activities.
Rules exist because they are the cement of society. Good manners exist because they are the cement of the soul.

vclamp on September 28, 2006 at 6:12 pm

Those cell phones light up like a candle. It is very disruptive, and I don’t need to see everyone around them all lit up in the glow as well. The beeps and clicks aren’t too bad, but they shouldn’t be there either. Those with deficient genitalia should just leave their cell toys in the back of their SUVs. Now hosts are finally stating that ‘if you want to get kicked out of the screening, just open up your cell phone.’ :)

Craigadams11 on September 28, 2006 at 8:58 pm

They didn’t go far enough, ban them for 30 days for the 1st offense, a year for the 2nd and lifetime for a 3rd, cell phones are a nuisence inide a movie theatre. People pay good hard earned money to see a movie in peace and it is the managers responsibuility to enforce that peace.

schmadrian on September 28, 2006 at 9:27 pm

Thing is, it’s not just cell phones. It’s the fact that ‘these people’ (put them under what ever demographic banner you feel comfortable with) see going to a film in an entirely different way.

Many people often remark about ‘the good old days’, when going to a cinema and seeing a film meant something entirely different, when cinemas were palaces. Treasures, if you will. : )

That’s not the case with ‘these people’; they’re just as happy to watch films at home. Which is why using a cell phone is no big dilemma for them. Or taking a call. Or MAKING a call. Ot talking through the film. There’s nothing ‘special’ to them about seeing a film in a cinema.

Turning the ship around at this point (as far as viewing habits go) is a tough quest. But I’m glad to hear that someone has shown some initiative. Maybe there’s hope yet.

ChaletTheatersLLC on September 28, 2006 at 9:29 pm

I believe that it was a good thing to have them leave BUT having the Police was a act of sheer stupidity! That asking them to leave, calling there parents ect. was right but involving Law Enforcement like we were in COmmunist China was taken to far, I agree with even texting can be disruptive , but they did go to far, as far as the person having 10 jobs up there and been all over the place, that makes me wonder what kind of ‘prokectionist’ he or she really is. take care all

JohnRice on September 28, 2006 at 9:50 pm

That text messaging crap is just about the final straw for me! Those damn cell phones light up the whole aisle, especially distracting in stadium type theaters. Just last Sunday I went to see “The Illusionist” and this fine film was pretty much ruined for us by some teenage bimbo in front of us lighting up the aisle with her cell phone every few minutes. She obviously had absolutely no interest in the film on the screen, probably just a bored auditorium jumper waiting for the next showing of “Jackass 2”. If that wasn’t enough, towards the end of the film she moved to our aisle, using some super bright LED flashlight (maybe it was just her cell phone) to guide her way. You can’t talk to these jerks and management has little incentive to discipline or throw them out. DVDs look pretty good on my new Panasonic Plasma TV, high definition on satellite looks even better. One of these days I’m going to say “Enough is enough!” and just give up on going to the movies altogether. After over 50 years of loving theaters and loving movies I take no pleasure in saying this but it’s the truth!

schmadrian on September 28, 2006 at 9:59 pm

jwr, this is exactly my point. Cinemas have essentially allowed these circumstances to unfold because, to be truthful, they exist in a very passive customer service universe. To me, they simply took their eye off the ball a few years ago and it’s only gotten worse ever since. They’ve done little to actually protect the cinema-going experience…and as a result, more and more people are bound to feel the way you do at the conclusion of your post. And you know what? I don’t blame you at all.

What’s missing is a sense of decorum on the part of some cinema-goers and a sense responsibility on the part of the cinemas. The cinema people may not control the product they show, but they sure as heck control the overall experience more than they’d like to admit.

Michael Furlinger
Michael Furlinger on September 29, 2006 at 12:18 am

THE CINEMA GOING EXPERIENCE is mostly gone,,,,its now going to the movies….

schmadrian on September 29, 2006 at 12:38 am

Actually, longislandmovies, you’re right…but it’s even more different than that: there is not only no sense of ‘respect’ or ‘reverence’ for the setting (the cinema), but hardly any for the film being watched, either. These ‘kids’ don’t really care about what they’re watching…or they have an entirely different frame of reference. But what do you expect: they’ve grown up mainly getting their movie experiences at home, where they can talk on the phone, gab with each other… Movies are disposable to them. They certainly do not have the same place in their lives that they did when we were growing up…

Michael Furlinger
Michael Furlinger on September 29, 2006 at 12:41 am

Very true Friday nights seem to be the worst ….going to the megaplex is like going to a carnival for them…

HowardBHaas on September 29, 2006 at 12:42 am

At every show, movie theaters should instruct moviegoers to turn off their cell phones & not play with gadgets like text emailing. The text emailers do light up the theaters in an annoying way, disruptive to watching the films. Neither the police nor their parents need be called to remove violators- they can simply be escorted out by ushers (unless they refuse to leave).

That said, multiplexes have so many auditoriums they could take one film and in one auditorium actually invite audience participation. Before entering the multiplex, moviegoers would know that ONE auditorium is for those who want to talk, communicate with each other via text emailing, and so forth. They could enjoy themselves there!

beardbear31 on September 29, 2006 at 2:01 am

If there are people that can’t escape the outside world long enough to watch and enjoy a movie, then must have serious problems.

JoshCaudle on September 29, 2006 at 3:42 am

I’ve got SO many comments to make to just the replies, I’ll go poster by poster:

But first and foremost, as a Theatre General Manager, BRAVO to the theatre, shocking to see it was an AMC…usually anything goes at the big guys!

The NBC link was vague and useless..they were probably busy talking about JonBenet Ramsey to actually ask anyone who was present any questions.

TxtMessageOhNo: You show your lack of intelligence in use of “retarded”. And “they paid for a ticket like everyone else.”-YES..everyone else who is sitting trying to watch the movie without a bright light in their field of vision. And your “just like the average policeman” has nothing better to do…I think that tells a lot about your position as a troublemaker, criminal, just plain moron, or likely all of the above.

Schmadrian…the overall problem is with society today…people are trained to never be responsible for anything themselves, especially their own activity;
Look at the lady who sued MCdonalds as she spilled hot coffee when she put a styrofoam cup between her legs and drove off..AND WON!

Look at anyone whos smoked a cigarette in the last 20 years…with all that we know now..and STILL sue cigarette companies..AND WIN!

and to CHALETTHEATRESLLC…Complete and total SHAME ON YOU as a theatre operator for saying these people went too far! SHAME SHAME SHAME on you for being just another spineless operator who’s too afraid to take a stand and “upset” someone.

You know as well as I do (if you actually spend any true time in your theatre’s operations and not arranging the next lease-option) that the staff either got a complaint, or noticed someone was on the phone BRIGHT TEXTING, and asked them to put it away, when they were met with a number of “colorful metaphors” at which time the staff asked them to leave and the “patrons” refused, then were told if they didnt leave they would have the police summonded, and they chose not to leave after that. How do I know? Because that’s how it ALWAYS turns out. If the staff lets them stay for the rest of the film after all of that, then they ALL get out their phones and text message, talk, and so on. You think teenagers are going to give out their “parents numbers”—<lol>..where is your Chalet Theatre located, Downtown Mayberry?

This is the only time I have ever actually appreciated the works of a the big guys…if only the small time people would all get behind this instead of being cowards afraid of cheesing off the teenagers, who now apparently go to the big guys and actually GET THE GAUNTLET brought down on them!

exit on September 29, 2006 at 5:26 am

Well it’s about bloody time! Any idiot who doesn’t realize what an obnoxious distraction texting is in a theatre does not belong in a public Cinema. The screens on these new phones are made to show up in bright sunlight, so in a darkened theatre they stand out like beacons in the night! Look around any full theatre as the lights go down, it looks like Manhattan at midnight.

About a year ago, I was in a grand old movie palace watching a hit Broadway show, while some woman in down in front of us held out her damn phone at arms length all the way through the show. Impossible to concentrate on this wonderful show (that you just paid 80 bucks a seat for) when some clueless fool is waving a bright light around. She was distracting literally hundreds of people.

I totally applaud the theatre for boucing the texting teens. As for their using the police to eject the offenders, does anyone think these obnoxious kids would respond to anyone BUT the police? Many theatres employ off duty police officers as security personnel, and for good reason. It’s bad enough that people can’t keep their feet off the seats in front of them!

Ron Newman
Ron Newman on September 29, 2006 at 9:05 am

If she was holding her phone out like that, she was using it to photograph the performance — which is a serious no-no at any Broadway show. She should have been thrown out immediately.

schmadrian on September 29, 2006 at 9:08 am

Times have changed. And most change happens by degree. In this discussion we’re really talking about how people are more concerned about getting what they want and not being considerate of others…and what I call ‘disassociation’, the habit of not really being where you actually are through the use of a cell phone or an MP3 player.

-the use of Walkmans and MP3 players mean that ambient sound is being battered by spillage from headphones in buses, subways, trains, in elevators and restaurants
-the fact that cell phone conversations take place where previously, they simply weren’t possible. (Did you see the recent video of the professor grabbing the cell phone of a student during a lecture and throwing it to the floor? He didn’t miss a beat, continued on with the lecture…)
-I suspect people have generally lost touch with how to behave in certain situations, and that by default, they’re bringing in their ‘home’ behaviour or their default social habits. (I’m not a church-goer, but I’d be curious to know if it’s been affected by this trend. Probably not, because God makes a pretty imposing hall monitor…) Maybe stadium sports have survived unscathed…but I also know that golf has been affected by a shift in ‘rules of decorum’. (Naturally, it depends where you stand in this particular debate: with the traditionalists, or with those who see the Tiger Woods of the sport as being due enthusiasm on the links commensurate with boxing champs.)

I think that when cinemas began losing their monopoly on being the source for movie entertainment (I’d only just recently been reminded of the impact of the ‘Movie of the Week’ on tv some 30+ years ago), the ‘specialness’ of the movie-going experience began to decay. When movie palaces and nabes were replaced by multiplexes, this situation just got worse. How ‘special’ can a film be to a younger generation when they can watch it on their home system in a couple of months, or when most of their viewing takes place not in a cinema, but in front of their tvs via DVD players? (You’d think that this would make going to a cinema once in a while a special thing, and they’d be on their ‘best behaviour’. It apparently doesn’t. This too is part of the short-attention spanned, transient, ever-changing, constantly shifting instant-gratification generation’s profile.)

To me the end result is not only a generation who holds the viewing of films in a cinema in an entirely different light, but because of the uncouthness of these people, others are increasingly saying ‘I’ve had enough! The high price involved with going to a film is bad enough! The hit-and-miss quality of the entertainment adds to the downside! But these idiots who don’t care about anyone else’s viewing pleasure… That’s it! I’m staying home! Never again!’ You can’t make people be polite in general. But you can insist that a ticket-holder respect others within the cinema. And this is why I’m glad this issue is getting some attention. Because it’s only going to get worse…unless the cinemas do something about it. So Hurrah! to this particular cinema and I hope that others get the message.

<steps off soapbox>

alex35mm on September 29, 2006 at 9:49 am

Thanks everyone for all these comments, I’m honestly going to try something different when I do my theater announcements regarding cell phones this evening before the shows. “..And Remember folks, it’s stadium seating. When you flip open that phone EVERYONE behind you sees it. Enjoy the show everyone!”

Its worth a shot.

Mikeoaklandpark on September 29, 2006 at 9:50 am

Three cheers for this theater and it’s management.

ChaletTheatersLLC on September 29, 2006 at 10:24 am

I guess Josh did not read the comment correctly,I again think it was correct in getting those people out of there but i do not think the Police should have been used to throw them out, i own many theaters and we have asked people ( not just kids either this issue swings BOTH WAYS) to not do this or that, if they dont, we escort them out and ban them. Police should not be used unless they are threatning or actually doing things that are illegal.

NarrowGauge on September 29, 2006 at 11:32 am

In order to truly ban a patron police must be involved. Each year we kick out and criminally restrict 5 or 6 patrons that we just don’t want back. In each case we give them a criminal restriction which results in criminal tresspass if the come back. If a patron refuses to leave we don’t engage them but merely call the police and have them escort the person out. Once the police arrive the situation quickly difuses-I don’t want my staff getting into heated arguments and physical altercations with obnoxious patrons-thats why we pay all that money in real estate taxes-use the local police-It has worked for us for 20 years.

JohnRice on September 29, 2006 at 11:49 am

I would say that police should be used anytime a couple of polite demands to leave the theater are ignored. A stern warning to desist from the uncivil behavior should precede the demands. Of course we have to realize that police may have more urgent priorities and not be immediately available in every community. In urban areas many of these punks are carrying guns or ready to start punching somebody out at the slightest provocation. I definitely don’t think it would be that good of an idea for management or their low paid, inadequately trained employees to try to forcibly remove these jerks. Of course if they choose to go after your demand, no problem!

I think most theaters could do a bit more to decrease the cell phone problem in general (which is nly getting worse from my recent experience!) I would have signs on the box office and on auditorium doors stating that cell phone use (including text messaging) is prohibited. After the preview trailers, an additional policy trailer should remind people of that. Some theaters do include the no cell phone message as part of their “our feature attraction” tag and it seems to be somewhat effective. You can usually see a few phones being pulled out and turned off. We are all human and forget to do things at times. A reminder can be helpful and effective. Others think that rules just don’t apply to them. They are the ones who deserve to be asked to leave and the police called without hesitation if they refuse. Just my humble little opinion!

Ian on September 29, 2006 at 1:30 pm

The sooner signal blocking devices are installed and used in theatres the better. I have sat and fumed as – in both live and film theatres – not only has a phone rung, but the person has answered the damn thing! Trouble is, if you make a fuss you are causing more disruption to the audience yourself, but those with a complete lack of consideration for anyone else ought to be made aware of how annoying these text and phone calls are.

exit on September 29, 2006 at 8:38 pm

A followup… 1) about the woman in the theatre: the phone wasn’t pointed at the stage in this case, but yes camera phones introduce another aspect to phone use in theatres… 2) as for the remarks by Chalet Theatres (remind me not to go there) a really good projectionist these days will often be asked to work “all over the place” – experience in many different locations is a plus! Having strong security (like Police) is a good thing and necessary these days when people don’t see any boundries.

TxtMsgOhNoooooesss on September 29, 2006 at 8:49 pm

After reading everyone’s responses it sounds like you guys are living in the past. I’m 23 years old and guess what… it’s going to the movies. There is no “magical cinema experience in cinema land.” The “talkies” are long since past. If you actually believe that, then I guess I should break it to you now that Santa Clause isn’t real either. Cry more please. QQ

GTFO and GSO if you actually believe that kind of garbage. It’s a F*cking movie for christ sake. A MOVIE!!!!!!! You guys act like its a crime against humanity. That’s the problem, most of you are extremely too uptight.

So long as they have the sounds and flashing lights off, texting isn’t a problem. Hmm there is a gigantic screen but I don’t have enough mental or physical capacity to keep myself from focusing on one little light maybe 1000 times smaller than the movie screen.

If you don’t know what GTFO and GSO mean then I suggest you google it. If you are too old and don’t understand what that means I suggest you leave the internet to the more technologically savvy. We are the future, get used to it. It was about time we met face to face.

And surprisingly, you may be thinking I’m some random “hoodlum” or “punk” but guess what? I am a college graduate and now I am very well compensated contractor. I like JoshCaudle’s viewpoint that just because I think most of the comments on this page are ludicrous I must be uneducated, a criminal, and 13 years old. Why do you think so many young people laugh/mock at older crowds, because they are people with opinions like JoshCaudle.

ChaletTheatersLLC on September 29, 2006 at 9:03 pm

CinemaSightLines do not worry, i would make a exception for you, i would ask they take you behind the building.

ChaletTheatersLLC on September 29, 2006 at 9:05 pm

JoshClaude reads crystal balls to

exit on September 29, 2006 at 9:06 pm

Ah, the ignorant arrogance of youth. The above comment is a perfect example of the kind of the mentality that keeps people away from seeing movies in public. This is a board for people who appreciate the finer points of the moviegoing experience. A college degree does not necessarily indicate common sense.

TxtMsgOhNoooooesss on September 29, 2006 at 9:10 pm

Common sense will tell you that you are living a dream if the movies is anything but that. I mean, get real, seriously. Do you not comprehend the simple fact that it’s just a movie? JUST A MOVIE. See, I’m trying to be real clear here. I wish I could say it really slow to you, so you can fully understand. This whole thing is blown completely out of proportion.

Like I first said, throw the people who are busy chit chatting and having a full on conversation during the movie. You see, their sound can actually be louder or just as loud as the movie, but a tiny cell phone light, please! Try harder.

ChaletTheatersLLC on September 29, 2006 at 9:11 pm

You are right but there are a heck of lot of people that are adults that do not deserve the respect of some of the young crowd, they say one thing and do another,i agree with the comment from Txt and to be frank, its the PRICES that keep people away not the texting and other aspects, it does not happen to the point most of the people here seem to try and make it would

TxtMsgOhNoooooesss on September 29, 2006 at 9:15 pm

Schmadrian has pinned it down just right. This is how things are going now, so get used to it or stay home.

[quote from Schmadian]
I think that when cinemas began losing their monopoly on being the source for movie entertainment (I’d only just recently been reminded of the impact of the ‘Movie of the Week’ on tv some 30+ years ago), the ‘specialness’ of the movie-going experience began to decay. When movie palaces and nabes were replaced by multiplexes, this situation just got worse. How ‘special’ can a film be to a younger generation when they can watch it on their home system in a couple of months, or when most of their viewing takes place not in a cinema, but in front of their tvs via DVD players? (You’d think that this would make going to a cinema once in a while a special thing, and they’d be on their ‘best behaviour’. It apparently doesn’t. This too is part of the short-attention spanned, transient, ever-changing, constantly shifting instant-gratification generation’s profile.)

That last sentence is actually a very good representation of what my generation is. Instant-gratification is a must.

TxtMsgOhNoooooesss on September 29, 2006 at 9:16 pm

What truly bugs me is that when I was in high school (6 years ago) movie prices were ½ of what they are now. If you guys really want to complain, use that.

ChaletTheatersLLC on September 29, 2006 at 9:20 pm

That is correct Txt see my comment right above yours here itsthe PRICES that has ruined the movie going experience, not the kids or adults, that is just a excuse and a lame oneat that, it does not happen as often as a lot of the ‘people’ up here say it does,

Chris Utley
Chris Utley on September 29, 2006 at 9:32 pm

“It’s just a ***king movie…"
”…when I was in high school (6 years ago)…"

A sad portrait of a generation who’s greatest film experiences are watching LOTR or the Star Wars Prequels. To them, “Lawrence of Arabia” is probably nothing more than a long, boring movie for old folks. Say the words 70MM to these kids and they’ll probably call me retarded for adding another M to the abbreviation for 70 million.

There was a time when it was more than just a ***king movie. That is why Cinema Treasures exists in the first place – to cherish that time. To the management of the AMC who gave these kids the boot, I proudly salute you.

exit on September 29, 2006 at 9:34 pm

Again the opinions of this youngster are indeed pure ignorant arrogance… having never experienced the finer points of the moviegoing experience, he has no idea why the behavior is wrong. Which is why he is best suited to the kind of typical bland ‘plex that most of us here avoid.

And Chalet: If you are aiming for a simply mediocre experience, that’s the best you can achieve…

Again this site is a place to appreciate the nearly extinct ideal moviegoing experience. It still exists here and there but it takes a considerable effort. And the results are well worth the effort. I’ve been in theatres where there was real theatrical atmosphere and showmanship – it’s very now, but today’s audience does notice and appreciate the difference. Exhibitors need to learn how to do it and re-educate patrons how to behave accordingly.

Texting is just one of many problems degrading the moviegoing experience. The degradation was begun by exhibitors in the first place back in the 70s. To save money, theatres were stripped of all atmosphere and showmanship… when video brought movies home, movie screens shrunk while TVs grew… so there’s nothing left to distinguish today’s cinema as a unique or memorable experience. That’s another reason why people don’t know how to behave in theatres. Check out our article on movie manners at

Michael Furlinger
Michael Furlinger on September 29, 2006 at 9:35 pm

TXMSGOHNOOOOOOOOOOOO-joined the day this post came out—always suspect——-You are uneducated because you cant follow rules….no phones in a theater means no phones…..there are many rules i dont like but i follow them to be a normal part of society……Before you ask i am 40………

Michael Furlinger
Michael Furlinger on September 29, 2006 at 9:38 pm

ps…this is why this needs to be a pais site!

Michael Furlinger
Michael Furlinger on September 29, 2006 at 9:38 pm

ps…this is why this needs to be a paid site!

exit on September 29, 2006 at 9:41 pm

Sounds like people like Txt beling in theatres like Chalet. That would be a good arrangement.

And with that collective attitude the moviegoing experience is doomed to degrade into total mediocrity.

As for the rest of us, we can hold together and encourage those who see the difference to set the bar back to the height it should be.

TxtMsgOhNoooooesss on September 29, 2006 at 9:41 pm

longislandmovies – why would I care how old you are?

Besides, I believe just about every theater that has a no phone policy states it as either “silence is golden” or has a fake trailer that is interrupted with a cell phone ringing as a gag, then states the policy.

From what I gather, those rules are against… you guessed it… SOUND. Not texting. Good try though. You get an A for effort.

TxtMsgOhNoooooesss on September 29, 2006 at 9:42 pm

CinemaSightlines – I’m just being realistic and honest. Face it and accept it. if you think otherwise, as I have said, it’s just wishful thinking.

exit on September 29, 2006 at 9:45 pm

I wish I was 23 again so I could know everything too!

Michael Furlinger
Michael Furlinger on September 29, 2006 at 9:47 pm

TXMSGOHNOOOOO- I DONT THINK YOUR 23 AND IF YOU ARE I AM SORRY….when i was 23 i would be thinking what am i going to do on Friday night….lol………not on line with ‘OLD’ people..

TxtMsgOhNoooooesss on September 29, 2006 at 9:50 pm

Hmm, maybe because I didn’t feel like going out and getting trashed like most of my other friends when I’m leaving for NYC tomorrow morning…? Maybe I can stop by your theater and we can chat?

I actually have tourist bus tickets to tour NYC, want to come?

TxtMsgOhNoooooesss on September 29, 2006 at 9:50 pm

In case you couldn’t catch that, the plan is to leave around 4-5am ish… with NYC being about a good 4-5 hour trek and from what I’ve calculated about $20 in tolls.

Michael Furlinger
Michael Furlinger on September 29, 2006 at 9:51 pm

go to a movie……………….lol…….are you asking me out txmsgohnooooooooooooooooooooo

Michael Furlinger
Michael Furlinger on September 29, 2006 at 9:53 pm

what state are you in………….

TxtMsgOhNoooooesss on September 29, 2006 at 9:56 pm

I’ll help you out… sarcasm

Also, if you knew anything about the DC Area or really going out in general, you would know you don’t even think of going out to a bar or club until 11pm, at the earliest. But ya, I am going to NYC tomorrow morning.

Cinema- I never claimed I knew everything, but it doesn’t take anyone with half a brain to see that what all of you are complaining about is the norm… or do you not even have a half? /cry

Michael Furlinger
Michael Furlinger on September 29, 2006 at 9:59 pm

I just moved from NY to bad would love to meet you…………

exit on September 29, 2006 at 10:07 pm

Obviously a college degree doesn’t indicate an ability to spell… or the ability to understand that pervasive behavior is not always acceptible behavior. It’s an ignorant notion that if everybody else does it it must be okay. txt also hasn’t realized that on this board we are the norm and he is in the minority here. long island, do you think a trip to the Ziegfeld would educate him a bit? probably not.

Michael Furlinger
Michael Furlinger on September 29, 2006 at 10:12 pm

Ziegfeld—wow —that would be an education———

ChaletTheatersLLC on September 29, 2006 at 10:43 pm

The thing is Long ILsland said bad things before about Chalet, but i am still here, and still growing both in theaters and in experience, even though i have been in the industry for quite some time, oh, and Long, did you see the artticle where i DID rescue the Pioneer? yes, i thought so but no comment on it, at any rate, if you were to come to some of the theaters i do have you would realize i also cherish those long ago art deco theaters, this is why my company only buys these kinds, single screens that once again open and become what they used to be, i do put lots of money in my theaters, i am not a big ‘outfit’ but i do manage to survive and i put energy back into what i buy, i have a loyal following and am not out to win the hearts and minds of most of the people here, we all have a way of doing things but it would seem thatmost of the people here just talk they dont see the theaters they talk about,,, i could be wrong though

JoshCaudle on September 29, 2006 at 10:44 pm


I have now read both of your comments, again.

Let’s pin it down..

You are managing a location, you have unruly people disturbing the film, be it texting, talking, etc. You go to them, ask them to stop. They either refuse to, or say they will and do not. You go back, they tell you to “piss off”-replace with other four letter words.

Now then, they’ve told you to piss off, you ask them to leave, they refuse..

What do YOU do then?

reminder: You said you wouldn’t call the police, as that would be an “act of stupidity"
reality reminder: Unruly patrons, especially teenagers, are not going to give you their parents number after they’ve refused your request to leave.


(I am quite curious as this answer really sets the tone for the kind theatres you run)

ChaletTheatersLLC on September 29, 2006 at 10:48 pm

As far as spelling i did not come from a background that i would have to do everything correct and by the book. I type fast and make mistakes, but, i also own theaters of which i am proud of, i do not proclaim to be the ‘guru’ here as i can see that there are people that claim that title and think they know it all. But i do KNOW that out of most of the people here that comment, there is only a ‘few’ of us that own theaters and run them. There is always that other 99% that do not and think they do.

TxtMsgOhNoooooesss on September 29, 2006 at 10:49 pm

Cinema – You know you have nothing when all you can do is point out my horrible spelling. Yes, I attribute that to MS Word and the auto-check spelling feature but that’s another case. Nonetheless, even if I am the minority here, in the real world I am very much the majority.

TxtMsgOhNoooooesss on September 29, 2006 at 10:51 pm

Longisland – on another note, since you just moved… what’s a good place to check out in NYC (daytime thing), I have my night plans covered. I heard the WTC memorial was very pathetic at best in terms of memorials.

JoshCaudle on September 29, 2006 at 10:52 pm


If you were “Very much in the majority” then everyone in the theatre would be on phones, and companies like AMC wouldn’t have Dilence is Golden policy and enforcement.

ChaletTheatersLLC on September 29, 2006 at 10:53 pm

Josh, you do not know what theaters i have and i bet you that you did not read the article from this past Monday i believe, on how we rescue theaters that are from the vaudeville days, no where did i say i would not call the Police, if only after asking them to do whatever is offensive and they did not, and still refused and became unruly. All of my managers are just not theater managers, they are trained in another area that you are not privy to. I just do not own theaters, i am in another line of work and have been for years, my theater managers have another job that they can ‘use’ if the situation warrents it. I do not want you reading into the lines so i will try and spell it out, they are in law enforcement and i am happy to say, we have never, ever had to call the police. They are there.

ChaletTheatersLLC on September 29, 2006 at 10:56 pm

Oh well, i do love what i have and own, i did not get to where i am at by being stupid either. There are people here who have nothing better to do then to point out others faults and make sure that they are heard. I am just here because i like to see the people talk here and then get into it because only there view is the right one. I willl not name names :)

TxtMsgOhNoooooesss on September 29, 2006 at 11:09 pm

QFT… quote for truth for the layman

exit on September 29, 2006 at 11:10 pm

For the record, I have been involved in every aspect of operating a theatre, including manager and projectionist (back when these were separate jobs) for over thirty years.

ChaletTheatersLLC on September 29, 2006 at 11:27 pm

Most places i know, they still are seperate, me, since 1974 projection for Brazos Twin Drive In owned since 1988 i do not know everything but i do know ours and they are sucessful

JoshCaudle on September 29, 2006 at 11:33 pm


“I believe that it was a good thing to have them leave BUT having the Police was a act of sheer stupidity! That asking them to leave, calling there parents ect. was right but involving Law Enforcement like we were in COmmunist China was taken to far…"
posted by ChaletTheatersLLC on Sep 28, 2006 at 4:29pm

So then, you use your law enforcement persons on your staff, that is ok, but Managers who do not have that advantage, and call law enforcement for help, are stupid and communist?—YOUR words from your quotes!

And stop going on and on about how great you are rescuing theatres and building businesses…if I prefaced every statement I made with my own accomplishments I’d be a then well since you do..hmmm.

So I’ll pose the question again for Chalet to find a new backdoor to sneak out of on it..I’ll make it a two option answer. are personally managing a theatre. You nor any of your staff are members or law enforcement or security agencies or companies. You have unruly patrons you have asked to stop, they refuse. You ask them to leave, they refuse.

Do you, Chalet
a) Call the police and have them remove the unruly patrons?
b) Just let it go and allow them to continue to ruin the film for those who are affected by their unruly actions?

exit on September 29, 2006 at 11:35 pm

Back to the topic, as the article i referenced points out, the moviegoing experience has been degraded by exhibitors for decades to the point where the standards are lower, and that has encouraged lower standards for behavior. I believe in running a theatre where the standards are high and the regulations strict enough to preserve them. That invloved great attention to details of presentation and operation. (More on that coming to our site) That may make me a dinosaur but a lot of people think dinosaurs are pretty cool.

JoshCaudle on September 29, 2006 at 11:40 pm

Your rules and regs I can honestly say are in full operation and enforcement at my cinema, from posting to preshow announcements, to in show patrols.

Bravo to theatre operators taking the time to mind the store, and training their staff to set such high standards instead of staffing one lone person in the lobby while they sit upstairs and draw up lease options on their next theatre.

ChaletTheatersLLC on September 29, 2006 at 11:46 pm

Lol you guys are tooooooo funny, i just do not sit upstairs, i make things ‘happen’ thats why i do not have the problems that you guys are ranting and raving about, again, its not the problems that you are talking about that has ruined the theaters,,, its the prices that have done it, plain and simple truth, its only a 5 % that does what you say, i go here and there and every where, all over and see how theaters are run, 95 % run right and do not have these problems, yes they are there, but if you will notice its not the kids that really interrupt the other folks its the adults talking and carrying on, be that as it may, if all failed i would call the police, i hope that settles of what i would do, i am glad that theaters stand up, i am also just as glas i do not have that problem.

exit on September 30, 2006 at 12:07 am

It’s not just prices that keep people out of theatres. The standards are way too low.

Ron Carlson
Ron Carlson on September 30, 2006 at 12:50 am

Hooray for the theater management, Anyone doing anything to disrupt the other audience members should be ejected in the manor most likly to make an impression that their behavior is not going to be tollerated. There used to be etiquette on how to behave in public and specifically in movies. While I’m not the biggest fan of the corporate movie theater (AMC and others) I do appreciate their commitment to try and provide an uniterupted movie experience. And to send a message that the ticket you paid for does not grant you the right to do what ever you want. Especially if your behavior is bothering the others and not in keeping with watching the movie.

NarrowGauge on September 30, 2006 at 1:26 am

Great discussion!
While I agree that price has been a major factor in why people don’t go to the movies, presentation and audience rudeness must factor in.
Cell phones are a problem(despite singage asking people to turn phones off) at my theater. I can only hope cell blockers will be legal some day.
Audience rudeness is certainly more prevailant today than 10 years ago-despite our best efforts.
Tonight I asked a teenager to leave the theater as he didn’t have a ticket and was auditorium jumping. His mother came in later yelling 4 letter words at how awful I was to put a teeager out on the street. She refused to leave the building after being asked three times-still screaming at me when the police arrived to restrict her permantly.
Chalet has it right-I would love to have some law enforcement officers work tickets for me!

exit on September 30, 2006 at 1:34 am

It’s not unusual for theatre security to be off duty policemen; a good idea and a common practice.

Michael Furlinger
Michael Furlinger on September 30, 2006 at 3:57 am

Chalet -i do not remember me saying much about your company??

ChaletTheatersLLC on September 30, 2006 at 11:52 am

Dont worry Long, my bad, you guys have a good weekend!

vclamp on September 30, 2006 at 11:43 pm

At no point have we found out under what circumstances that the Police were actually called, or the history of problems at this location.

Prices have only gone up $1.25 here in 7 years.

Social behaviour has taken a dive.

alex35mm on October 1, 2006 at 5:48 pm

TxtMsgOhNoooooess, I’m 21 and completely agree with the majority here. I work very, very hard at my 18 plex to try to save what showmanship and magic I can. Our presentation is near perfect most of the time, and we have a manager come in prior to the show on weekends politely reminding everyone to turn off their cell phones, or at least silence them, and that we’re all here to enjoy a movie and be respectful of others. Customers truly love it. If you work at a theatre I’d sure love to come check out how god-awful the experience is there.

alex35mm on October 1, 2006 at 6:00 pm

Also, CinemaSightlines and othres: Don’t lump all the youngins into one category. That’s completely not fair. I believe there is something truly wrong with how theatres and chains are run these days and slow but surly I have made it my goal in life to change that. Someday I hope to open my own chain with true class and showmanship. I know plenty of other people around my age that agree, and have a high respect for how things used to be and are working towards the same goal. There is so much going on in the exhibition industry behind the scenes that just isn’t right but for some reason a lot of these companies get away with it, for now.

Mark my words: Things will change, slowly but surely. We have to stay positive.

exit on October 1, 2006 at 7:34 pm

Hey a_proj, of course I don’t make all inclusive generalities but in this case, juvenile arrogance was the only explanation for someone who clearly joined this site only to tease the old folks, calling us “retards” and insisting that careless behavior be accepted as the norm.

I once met a young projectionist at well known pretentious multiplex here in Hollywood, and was amazed to find he had some appreciation for showmanship (though little opportunity to practice it) He totally “got it” but hadn’t had any opportunity to experience it for himself. These days it’s hard to find adults who “get it” – including those who run said multiplex. This young man picked it up from some “old folks” who came into the theatre as volunteer staff to help run a very special movie event.

Moviegoing was a memorable event back when theatres had atmosphere and some finesse in presentation. FYI check out American Widescreen Museum and read the sections marked ROADSHOW. Prestige theatres were run like a Legit (live) theatre and even rehearsed curtain cues to avoid showing a blank screen.

It takes countless little details to be handled with consideration and finesse to make a movie experience an event. All those details were stripped away from movie exhibition long ago and without them, well it IS “just a movie” When it’s presented as “just a movie” the audience is very likely to treat it as nothing special and careless behavior is a common result.

As far as things changing, well they really HAVE to, because people really are staying away from the plexes. This is exactly the kind of issue we’re going to cover at (as soon as we get someone to help build it properly). Once we get up and running, moviegoers will be able to review and rate public movie theatres, and make a more informed choice of where to spend their money. Eventually theatre owners will have to take notice and make an effort to improve their ratings…

If improving the moviegoing experience is a heartfelt issue for any of you, you’d fit right in with our crowd at CinemaSightlines. And until we get it built, go explore the great resource at American Widescreen Museum. That site, aling with CinemaTour and this one, are fine resources for anyone who truly appreciates how exciting and memorable a moviegoing experience can be.

schmadrian on October 1, 2006 at 7:55 pm

regarding TxtMsgOhNoooooesss… and his incredibly insightful contributions that lead off with:

“After reading everyone’s responses it sounds like you guys are living in the past. I’m 23 years old and guess what… it’s going to the movies. There is no "magical cinema experience in cinema land.” The “talkies” are long since past. If you actually believe that, then I guess I should break it to you now that Santa Clause isn’t real either. Cry more please. QQ"

I know we have recently had a moratorium on combative exchanges, but I’ll tell ya… This ‘person’ sure makes me want to- Well, I’ll try to restrain myself in my response.

TxtMsg, you may be 23, you may be on your way to having a well-paid career, but the maturity you display in your comments… Well, I know that if you and I’d had a conversation as 23 year olds, I’m sure I would have thought something like ‘Grow the hell up.’

I found it hilarious that someone would jump onto a comments board and basically prove everything that’s been pointed out regarding what’s lacking in today’s cinema-goers. You may not actually behave like a twit in cinemas, but clearly, as you feel the need to declare the power of your generation, you’re cut from the same cloth.

Of course, the most amusing comment had to be “Why do you think so many young people laugh/mock at older crowds?”, because it’s not going to be very long before ‘young people’ are laughing at you, my friend. You may feel that you have more in common right now with teenagers, but seriously; you’re gonna be ancient before you know it.

Your opinions are your own, but really, you should learn some manners. Obviously, being of a ‘younger’ generation, one that spends an undue portion of its time ‘reaching out and touching people’ via the keyboard, your tactics and your mindset online tend to be more aggressive, less conciliatory, and certainly have less to do with thought than with emotion. But really, take a look at the profile of this site. It’s not IMDb. It’s not designed to be a venue for verbal slugfests. It’s a repository for cinema histories and fairly genteel exchanges about cinema-going. The tone here is not the same as it might be elsewhere…and this isn’t a generational thing; it’s a question of appropriate behaviour.

And seriously, don’t get me started on your proprietary attitude about cinemas, your ‘It’s OUR world now, so you’d best just get your Adult Depends untwisted and settle in for the way WE want things.’ Hate to break it to you, but it doesn’t work that way…until you start owning the facilities in question. And judging by the way you conduct yourself in the simplest of exchanges, that ain’t gonna be anytime soon.

To my fellow CT regulars, my apologies for letting doltish intrusions get the better of me. My only defence is that my response in-person is much worse.

ChaletTheatersLLC on October 1, 2006 at 8:33 pm

cant we all just get along,,,,,, :)

alex35mm on October 2, 2006 at 5:35 am

CinemaSightlines: I’ll keep an eye on that site your working on, sure sounds interesting. I’d love to give my thoughts and assistance. Also, the idea of being a projectionist in Hollywood sounds amazing! What a lucky dude.

exit on October 2, 2006 at 6:05 am

a_Proj: I used to know the top Projectionist at one of the studios… one of the last places where a union card means something. Because of his expereince and ability, he had been asked to work in many different places, including the private screening rooms of some Hollywood “names.” He had lots of interesting stories, was always ready for “tech talk” and gave a very good explanation for why modern movies are often too loud. My opinion in a previous post that a projectionist who has worked in several places is probably a good one, was based on this guy. When I introduced screenings in the studio’s handsome multimillion dollar theatre, I would explicitly advise against a wide variety of unacceptable conduct. A snooty guest once tried to complain about my speech, and this guy totally backed me up.

dfc on October 2, 2006 at 7:41 pm

Schmadrian raises an interesting point.

TextMsg (or whatever his name is) is telling us something valuable through his semi-literate haze. The 20-something generation has been raised to a lower standard regarding public behavior. They look at a movie house the same as being in a mall where using a cellphone is not an issue. I feel that the theater management in this case was correct. But how often can they throw patrons out? Sooner or later it will become a legal issue for them I’m sure. No easy solution to rude patrons.

By the way any 23 year old that behaves this way in a moviehouse is pretty pathetic. I can sort of understand a 16 year old behaving this way but not an adult. This guy is out of college and he’s still text messaging his friends? Mmmmmm??????

ChaletTheatersLLC on October 2, 2006 at 9:20 pm

Adutls text message there friends family wifes partners, , you name it, dont limit it to just ‘college kids’ or even teens,,,

exit on October 3, 2006 at 8:29 pm

I posted this earlier and it seems to have disappeared, but one would hope adults would have the maturity and consideration to know better than to talk, text or otherwise play with a cell phone in a dark theatre during a film. Immaturity and inconsiderate behavior comes from all ages. I see grown adults sprawling their feet all over the seats every time I go to a movie.

Alto on October 8, 2006 at 5:56 pm

Throw them out, period – no need to give reasons – “no” means NO. You need to word rules in broad, absolute terms – if you don’t, and you start making exceptions, you will have anarchy. “No mobile devices – except for text messaging” will start out innocently enough with text messaging – then it will lead to “testing the waters” with an occasional short phone call – and if nobody gets caught, it will eventually evolve into full-blown “talk-fests”.

I work in a public facility [where quiet conduct is mandatory] – we get our share of miscreants, troublemakers and misfits, and I can tell you that these patrons will creatively abuse, manipulate and challenge every policy that they can in order to find “loopholes” and ways around rules to suit their own selfish purposes.

“If you give them an inch, they will take a mile.”

As for those individuals who, because of their age, think that a behavior is acceptable because THEY know better (despite others protesting that it obviously isn’t):
– You are the ones who need to “get a grip” – you give many “younger” people an undeservedly bad rep.
– You conveniently characterize anyone that objects to your annoying conduct as “older adults” – but guess what? – your parents are part of that age group too! – and I’ll bet that they “couldn’t be bothered” with recognizing or instilling in you polite social behavior, and are probably just as inconsiderate and arrogant as you are, if not more so – rudeness has no age limits.

“The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.”

AdoraKiaOra on December 20, 2006 at 11:39 am

Of course they didnt go too far! I hope they took mug shots and ban them from ever entering a cinema again! Maybe a police officer should sit in on every screening! Well done!

Demexii on September 28, 2007 at 5:58 am

I know this is old, but I am researching cell phones for school and somehow Google gave me this (How Google works is anyone’s guess). Anyway times have changed. I don’t go to the movies to have a great movie viewing experience. I can get a better one with my wall mounted HD TV with 7.1 surround sound. I can pause, rewind, and be in the perfect position (laying down with my girlfriend). I go with my girlfriend to the movies to watch it when it is new. Yes, I send and receive text messages (don’t answer a call, though, too difficult to hear and watch at the same time).

You know what? Movie studios would rather have those teens that were bounced than you as a

limabeandesign on November 16, 2008 at 3:27 am

I think the police escort was a bit much. However, the theater had every right to kick them out for texting.

The movie magic is seriously gone. When I was younger, going to the movies was an event! We didn’t go often, but when we did it was quite enjoyable. The lights go down, you get absorbed in the action on the screen, you become a part of it.

Today, some kids act like it’s their God given right to do what they want, when they want. And their parents act the same way! “What? You kicked my kid out for texting? Well, I told her to text me when she got there so I knew she was OK! How dare you!”

As a former GM, I can tell you I’ve encountered every type of teen and their parents. I think a lot of the problem is that parents expect the theaters to keep their kids safe. Cheap babysitting. And that’s complete BS.

But until theater chains start to grow some … (well, you fill in the blank)… this will continue to happen. All a person has to do (including parents who have kids that cause problems) is write or email the corporate office and 9 times out of 10 they’ll get a letter of apology and free passes to come back!

schmadrian on November 16, 2008 at 9:40 am

It’s almost impossible to reverse behaviour such as this. (Here’s an example of how far gone things are: ) Blame who you will, this is where we are.

This is what makes me crave simultaneous releases. Dolts such as the texting teens will stay home and either rent it buy it or download it. Not the solution that most here would support, but for many, the days of moviegoing that you describe…it being an event…are gone. Forever.

TheaterOwner01 on November 17, 2008 at 2:50 am

GLAD i have 4 Drive Ins, we dont have THAT problem

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