Friday, March 2, 2012

Entertainment is Fragile

I used to get upset when people talked during movies because it meant I was missing the dialogue. But now, I watch most of my movies at home. I can press the pause button on the remote. I can even rewind and see / hear something again if I’m unsure about what happened. I can even stop the movie if I want to go to the bathroom, or go for a walk, or answer the phone. It will be there when I get back.

So, when my husband, the alien, and I were watching Nancy Drew, and he became worried about her in the opening sequence when she’s slipping on the roof, I stopped the movie.  “There’s no reason to worry about Nancy Drew. She always has something in her pocket that will save her.”

“But she might fall off the roof.”

“Look, the worst thing that ever happens to Nancy Drew is that the bad guys will knock her out with chloroform, and then Ned will come rescue her.  It never seems to harm her lungs.  And if you check out a calendar, time doesn’t work the same way for her as for everybody else she’s solved over 100 mysteries during her 18th year and each one takes more than a week of concentrated sleuthing.”

We started the movie again. Of course Nancy had the right tools in her pocket and was able to get them into play in plenty of time.  

I remembered being a Nancy Drew newbie – worrying about her for several books – but then I caught on.  She’s a franchise.  

But being able to stop a movie makes other entertainment seem less fragile.

Yesterday we attended a play.  No subtitles. No stop and start. If we didn’t understand a line of dialogue, we just had to continue with the show.  It was a murder mystery. Members of the audience, including my husband, the alien, were constantly guessing who-done-it.  I never responded to any of his comments.  I didn’t have a clicker.  And besides, it was an Agatha Christie.  Anybody who knows Agatha, knows that the character who has the most lines is always the murderer.  While in Earl Stanley Gardner mysteries, it’s the character with the least lines.  


The next question is how to make live entertainment rewind or pause.  Even Newbies want to see the whole thing.  They’re not being rude.  They don’t sense a difference between live entertainment and home entertainment. talking about it is part of the entertainment. 

1 comment:

  1. Also, when watching a film at home, we have the option of using closed captions or subtitles. We have found this helpful when watching English or Irish productions, where the dialogue with accent is hard to grasp. We use it for better enjoyment of films like Phantom of the Opera, so we can enjoy the words of the songs and get the full meaning of the story.