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Popcorn & Prejudice: A Movie Blog

Seattle Times writer Moira Macdonald muses on moviegoing. Email Moira: mmacdonald@seattletimes.com.

June 7, 2011 at 10:53 AM

Remember the Alamo: A tale of texting

I got a kick out of this story, which comes from the Alamo Drafthouse, a chain of apparently quite awesome cinemas in Texas (and maybe elsewhere? Please?). At the AD’s cinemas, they take a hard line against texting, or talking, during the movie, and will toss you out if you don’t follow their rules — which are, the theater says, clearly posted on screen before every show. (Fair enough, I think; if you don’t want to follow their rules, you can certainly go somewhere else where you can text away without penalty, such as, any theater in the Seattle area.) Recently, they had an unsatisfied customer who called the cinema’s voicemail line to rant after she was tossed from a screening for using her phone. I’m putting it on a jump, because some of the language is definitely R-rated, so be warned.

So what did those creative Alamo staffers do? They made the voicemail into a PSA, that will show in their theaters before R-rated movies this weekend, and that’s well on its way to half a million YouTube hits. Now, you could argue that it’s a little mean of them to make fun of a customer this way, and I’d listen. But I am, at this point, not particularly interested in defending someone who’s “texted in all the theaters in Austin” and who says she’ll now stick to theaters where people are “actually polite.” And I am so, so tired of those flashes of blue light every time I go to a movie. I know it’s why a lot of you stay home. But tell me: Would you be more likely to attend a theater that had rules like this? I know I would.

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