I went to see “The Dark Knight Rises” yesterday. Great movie, but certainly a very long one. Awesome bad guys in the movie. I don't want to spoil anything for you, but I'll share this with you. There's a good chance that you may miss part of it if you get a large soda and have to go pee. That's because movie theaters seem to put the restrooms as far as physically possible from the theater. I can't tell you what I missed because…well, I missed it. That's why I usually don't watch movies in theaters. That, and I don't like crowds. It's nice to know I can pause the movie and not have to stand next to a stranger in the restroom just because I drank a lot of soda.
On the other hand, I don't have an IMAX sized screen in my house. We only have one true IMAX in Orlando. Those things they call IMAX-Lite, I'm told by my IMAX-snob friend, are not true IMAX. This was my first time in the true IMAX and now I understand what he means. If only he'd told me that the restrooms were so far away.
What does this have to do with bad guys or photography? I'm getting to the former and there's none of the latter, or at least very little. The issue has more to do with the state of paranoia people feel since the tragic shooting spree in Colorado at the premier night of this movie. I found myself on the wrong end of a security guard's gaze. All because I had to pee and I have a messenger bag.
The bag holds a few things for me: my iPad, my small camera, and some beef jerky I decided to sneak into the theater because I didn't want to buy overpriced popcorn or candy. Didn't work – I still bought some Dibs ice cream bites.
About two hours into the movie, crossing my legs was no longer a viable strategy. I picked up my messenger bag and made my way down the flights of stairs to reach the restroom placed much too far away from the movie theater. When I exited, I made eye contact with the guard and turned to go back up the stairs – which is right by the exit. He looked at me, his eyes widened, and then he RAN into the Mens Room to see if I'd planted something in there. After all, I had a messenger bag and it's olive drab. Must be some guy planting a bomb or something!
Once he panicked at the sight of me and my messenger bag, every other employee suddenly looked at me as though I were some threat. Some even looked afraid of me. All because I had to go pee and then trotted out because I didn't want to miss any more of the movie than necessary. I wonder if he was relieved or disappointed that I didn't leave anything behind for him to discover? I noticed a story on the evening news that a fistfight broke out today at an IMAX theater showing of this movie in Pittsburgh and people were fleeing for their lives.
Is this any way to live? Should people be in constant fear of each other after a tragedy? I certainly hope not. I prefer to see my bad guys in movies, not all around me.