I am currently attending the India edition of the European Union Film Festival (EUFF) in Mumbai and it is during one of the film screenings last day that I got the idea for this article. As the title suggests, there are dumb things that people do while they are watching a movie in complete darkness. And here I am going to list them out without much description.
- Take a photo of a shot in the film with a flash
- Slide unlock their mobile (with the brightness usually higher than average)
- Return a phone call after it has rung for a few long seconds
- Make a phone call
- Get up and leave*
- Do something on their smartphone
- Chew something
- Get up before the end credits have finished rolling up
- Stand in the aisle
- Bring their kids who are clearly not interested in cinema
- Take a selfie in the middle of a show
- Laugh or clap more for than the accepted time span (the upper limit is 3 seconds unless you are at Cannes)
I have to admit that *I have gotten up and left from quite a few movies because they were just too bad to endure but in film festivals this just happens a lot, especially if the entry is free. But there’s no reason why anyone would engage in any of these activities while watching a film. While I get why someone would want to take a photo of a scene in a film (for film Twitter, of course!) and I know they must have forgot to switch off the flash. But what I don’t understand is where is the sensitivity and common sense? Engaging in any of these just goes against the idea of going to the movies. One would rather binge-watch on Netflix at the comfort of their home if they also want to chat with their friend or munch on popcorn all at the same time. This is why we need stricter cinema theatre rules and regulations.
It surprises me more to see such type of behaviour even in film festivals where it is assumed that the audience is more serious and sensitive with the art and their fellow enthusiasts. But I think it is safe to assume that none of these festivals are secure from this type of dumb behavior from its patrons. Be it TIFF or Berlinale or MAMI.
Maybe I am dumb for having pointed them out and spent 30 minutes writing this stub. TN.
Featured image courtesy: Jake Hills/Unsplash