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I look forward to seeing this here.
September 14, 2012 8:52 AM   Subscribe

We have talked before on the blue about movie theatre etiquette and the problem of movie talkers. London's Prince Charles Cinema has gone to the next level and hired ninja (volunteers wearing zentai suits) to keep order.
posted by ricochet biscuit (56 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

 
I appreciate the sentiment, but...oh my God, what a terrible job this would be. If there's one thing rude people love, it's being called on their behaviour in public.
posted by The Card Cheat at 8:56 AM on September 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


Anyway, the program has proved so effective that already other British cinema chains are considering adopting it. But not American ones, because people carry guns here.

What a terrible scenario. But, c'est la vie Americaine.
posted by kozad at 8:56 AM on September 14, 2012


This sounds terrifying. It's like they just don't want customers at all. And I say that as someone who does enjoy a quiet movie theater.
posted by odinsdream at 9:02 AM on September 14, 2012


As much as I love the Prince Charles, I can't see this lasting very long before someone (probably the unfortunate volunteer in the black PJs) gets punched in the face. The cinema is right next to Leicester Square, so it's usually thronged with tourists or locals on a night out. Not exactly the best place to try out wacky social experiments.
posted by fight or flight at 9:06 AM on September 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


At what point does this encourage people to act up?
posted by tittergrrl at 9:09 AM on September 14, 2012


Zentai, previously.
posted by griphus at 9:10 AM on September 14, 2012


Yeah, I have to agree that physically assaulting people might not be the best course of action.
posted by DU at 9:11 AM on September 14, 2012


Dude, do this in a horror movie and somebody's gonna get seriously hurt.
posted by jbickers at 9:13 AM on September 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


Thou shalt not sit near the front row if thou hast big hair

Ditto tall people


What?

I'm tall (6'6), and I'll sit where I like. In a well-designed theater, it doesn't matter, because the height difference between rows should be large enough to fix this. It's the whole point of arena-style seating. Besides, "near the front row" has nothing to do with it, if this is a problem, it'll be a problem for any row except the last.

If I walked into a theater and tried to sit down in a good seat, only to have some ninja-suited douche tell me I couldn't sit there because I'm too tall, I'd be pissed off. What are my options, not seeing the movie as well, or shrinking?
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 9:14 AM on September 14, 2012 [11 favorites]


I would imagine that this is actually done in a slightly more comedic manner than the linked articles seem to suggest. The Prince Charles is not an institution famous for lacking a sense of humour. Note if you will their fondness for Labyrinth dress-up balls, sing-a-long-a Sound of Music screenings, Domestic Sluttery film festivals, and so on.
posted by the quidnunc kid at 9:15 AM on September 14, 2012 [6 favorites]


Is it legal and is there a way for theatres to black out cell phone signals?
posted by You Should See the Other Guy at 9:17 AM on September 14, 2012 [5 favorites]


Is this something I'd have to stop watching pirated new releases on my iPad at home to understand?
posted by Burhanistan at 9:21 AM on September 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


Is this where I confess that I am struggling with the rise in zentai suits in everyday life?

Maybe my discomfort is a sign that damn, I'm getting old and don't understand these youngsters anymore. Maybe this is like when Hot Topic opened and everyone started wearing chained wrist cuffs without intending to signal that they're in to bondage.
posted by muddgirl at 9:28 AM on September 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


After the Colorado theater massacre, a costume in a US theater would never fly.
posted by QuakerMel at 9:31 AM on September 14, 2012


After the Colorado theater massacre
Well eff it then man. It seems as thought the terrorists have won in the end, you know, if we're no longer free to wear whatever we feel like wherever we want.
posted by Blue_Villain at 9:36 AM on September 14, 2012 [4 favorites]


I hope "keep order" is a euphemism for "stealthily slit throats".
posted by symbioid at 9:40 AM on September 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


I find zentai suits kind of terrifying out in the light of day, and that's the only reason I object. Well, that and that it seems to be zentai suit marketing ploy. Otherwise, a quiet theater would be totally worth it!
posted by ldthomps at 9:43 AM on September 14, 2012


The Internet has messed up my brain, I have decided. I have decided this because I saw the picture in the linked AV Club article and my first thought was, "Wow, someone's jerking off to this photo."
posted by FAMOUS MONSTER at 9:47 AM on September 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


Is it legal and is there a way for theatres to black out cell phone signals?

There are legalities in the US. Theater owners would love to jam cell signals, but cell phone jammers are illegal here. Now, constructing a theater that's one big damn Faraday cage might get around that, I don't know, but I imagine construction costs would be an issue there.
posted by middleclasstool at 9:48 AM on September 14, 2012


Yeah. I've got a feeling they're not actually going to do this much. As the quidnunc kid says, the Prince Charles is known for its sense of humour. One of their current events is 'Swear Along With South Park'.
posted by memebake at 9:51 AM on September 14, 2012


The Internet has messed up my brain, I have decided. I have decided this because I saw the picture in the linked AV Club article and my first thought was, "Wow, someone's jerking off to this photo."

Yes, zentai suits are, in part, fetishwear. I mean, anything can become a fetish, but zentai suits sort of started that way before It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, although some people did seek them out as a costume, either humorously or seriously. But since that episode aired they are everywhere, especially at sports games.

When I was 18, I probably wouldn't care whether people were ignorant of the history, knew but didn't care, or were fetishists themselves. That's what I struggle with - the fact that I shouldn't care but I do.
posted by muddgirl at 9:54 AM on September 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


There are legalities in the US. Theater owners would love to jam cell signals, but cell phone jammers are illegal here. Now, constructing a theater that's one big damn Faraday cage might get around that, I don't know, but I imagine construction costs would be an issue there.

Eh, and I don't really think this is something anyone much wants. I'm a total movie theater Nazi, and I still want to be reachable for emergencies, etc.
posted by eugenen at 9:55 AM on September 14, 2012


The Prince Charles always used to be a bit crap and cheap. It's not cheap anymore, but is it still a bit crap?
posted by tigrefacile at 9:57 AM on September 14, 2012


Remote-firing tasers in the seat backs, automatically armed five minutes after the trailers end, set to fire upon the command of an employee with night-vision stationed above the movie screen.

Offset the inevitable legal challenges by posting video of each tasing online, taking a slice of the ad sales.
posted by aramaic at 9:59 AM on September 14, 2012 [4 favorites]


Now see if I were in charge they would hire the Pale Man from Pan's Labyrinth instead of some silly ninjas.
posted by shakespeherian at 10:03 AM on September 14, 2012 [3 favorites]


Slendermans would be the best. Slendermen?
posted by elizardbits at 10:15 AM on September 14, 2012 [3 favorites]


Slendersman
posted by griphus at 10:16 AM on September 14, 2012 [4 favorites]


Is this where I confess that I am struggling with the rise in zentai suits in everyday life?

I was at the same place until Bin Laden was killed, and one of the first people to show up in the impromptu celebration at the White House was in an American-flag-patterned zentai suit. So every time I get creeped out by one, I just think about that guy, seeing the news that Bin Laden was dead, turning to his closet. He sees the red-and-white-striped shoulder of that suit, the suit his ex-girlfriend told him was the biggest, stupidest waste of money she had ever seen.
"This..." he thinks, a smile creeping across his face, "this is our moment, American-flag-patterned zentai suit. Let's. Roll."
posted by Etrigan at 10:27 AM on September 14, 2012 [21 favorites]


Oh no! They're volunteers? Doing it just for admission to the movie? Someone call the ninja union - these people should be getting paid for their ninja skills!
posted by Squeak Attack at 10:32 AM on September 14, 2012 [4 favorites]


They may be ninja scabs.
posted by shakespeherian at 10:34 AM on September 14, 2012


Call in the Juggalo ninjas!
posted by Burhanistan at 10:34 AM on September 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


Their actions devalue the work of ninjas all over the world. This is an outrage.
posted by elizardbits at 10:34 AM on September 14, 2012


hired ninja (volunteers wearing zentai suits)

-_-
posted by adamdschneider at 10:35 AM on September 14, 2012


The big rule of movie-going behaviour I learned (it took a long time though) is "Thou shall not hotbox in thy Honda Civic and giggle during Serious Films About Depressing Subjects".
posted by KokuRyu at 10:50 AM on September 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


Ninja Parade slips through unnoticed.
posted by Burhanistan at 10:53 AM on September 14, 2012


Oh no! They're volunteers? Doing it just for admission to the movie? Someone call the ninja union - these people should be getting paid for their ninja skills!

If this were anything other than a publicity stunt, I would think it was a completely, obviously terrible idea to hire volunteers to dress up in face-obscuring costumes and ask them to police the behavior of other patrons. But it's just a stunt, so wtf who cares.
posted by muddgirl at 10:53 AM on September 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


I love the Prince Charles Anarchist Cinema and heartily endorse anything their deranged management put forward.
posted by davemee at 10:57 AM on September 14, 2012


(I don't mean 'stunt' to be derogatory, btw.)
posted by muddgirl at 11:01 AM on September 14, 2012


Slendermans would be the best. Slendermen?

Slendermen sounds like a nickname for a non-League football club from the small town of Pernwicksham-on-Sleinting (pronounced Perm-on-Slend):

"FA Cup action at the weekend featured a shocker as non-League minnow Perm-on-Slend defeated mighty Man United at Old Trafford, four-nil, on a hat-trick from their star striker, 38-year old bus driver Schuyler Belial. In a short post-match interview Sir Alex Ferguson admitted that his team 'looked frightened throughout the first half, and then just couldn't seem to shake their anxiety for the rest of the game.'

Wayne Rooney, who seemed reluctant to even take the pitch for the second half, was still wide-eyed and jumpy as he left the stadium. 'You have to hand it to the Slendermen, it was like they were everywhere and nowhere, creeping into the corner of your eye. Sometimes you'd think you had the ball, then it was gone, or no, was that one of them over there? It's like they worried us to death.'

The elusive Belial was apparently unavailable for comment, though he was sighted by dozens of fans of both teams on their way out of the park."
posted by Ice Cream Socialist at 11:38 AM on September 14, 2012 [8 favorites]


Should have hired The Greendale Human
posted by mulligan at 11:56 AM on September 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


The thing about the Slendermen is they like to walk it in.
posted by grubi at 11:58 AM on September 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


I could have used real ninjas in the met hd ring cycle at my local cinema. Why someone would willingly go to the ring and then think loudly chatting all through erda's warning won't result in immediate escalation to the movie theater management still boggles my mind.
posted by winna at 12:11 PM on September 14, 2012


Not knowing about the whole full body suit thing, I assumed the enforcers were dressed as super sentai.
posted by zamboni at 12:21 PM on September 14, 2012


muddgirl: " But it's just a stunt, so wtf who cares."

STUNTMEN.
posted by boo_radley at 12:24 PM on September 14, 2012 [3 favorites]


Thou shalt not sit near the front row if thou hast big hair

Oh come on its funny
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 12:27 PM on September 14, 2012


I'm tall (6'6), and I'll sit where I like. In a well-designed theater, it doesn't matter, because the height difference between rows should be large enough to fix this. It's the whole point of arena-style seating. Besides, "near the front row" has nothing to do with it, if this is a problem, it'll be a problem for any row except the last.

See, "well-designed" is the problem here. If remember right, The Prince Charles is pretty much unique in its design flaw, which includes a dip in the seat levels in the middle of the theatre. Back rows high, middle rows lower, front rows.... higher. You don't get a very good view from the middle anyway, so this kinda makes sense. [They make up for it by selling insanely cheap tickets, or at least they used to, they've gone up a bit now].
posted by Infinite Jest at 12:50 PM on September 14, 2012


Is there a way for theatres to black out cell phone signals?

Now, constructing a theater that's one big damn Faraday cage


Judging by my apartment, all they need to do is build the theatre with solid brick walls.
posted by TWinbrook8 at 1:39 PM on September 14, 2012


Is it legal and is there a way for theatres to black out cell phone signals?

Jammers are not legal. Building your entire theatre as a faraday cage is legal, but would be very expensive and would require designing it from the ground-up to block EMF.
posted by thewalrus at 2:07 PM on September 14, 2012


If I walked into a theater and tried to sit down in a good seat, only to have some ninja-suited douche tell me I couldn't sit there because I'm too tall, I'd be pissed off. What are my options, not seeing the movie as well, or shrinking?



I'm also tall. I try to favor one side of my seat or the other to give the patron behind me a better line of sight.
posted by notreally at 4:30 PM on September 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


Cinemas crack me up nowadays. They whine about free-falling revenue and studios complain that teenage boys decide 90% of their line-ups. It's like, duh, teenage boys are the only ones that can stand the fucking debased experience that is a modern trip to the movies, and only parasitic adolescents living at home have the disposable income to feel okay about blowing $20 for an experience that is nearly 1/3 advertising.

I mean, shit. I can watch a movie at home. I have a beautiful television that is reasonably large (by my standards, anyway). Unlike the movies, the thing is always in fucking focus and colour-correct.

The sound from my modest stereo is both clear and balanced, as opposed to whisper-quiet dialogue punctuated by ears-bleeding explosions that will leave me with PTSD on conclusion of the film. I can eat whatever the hell I like whilst watching it, I can even - heaven forfend - drink a beer without paying $10 frigging dollars for it.

The experience is gloriously ad-free, hardly anyone talks and certainly leaves if their phones rings, and if they don't I can tell them to "shut the fuck up please for the love of god I'm trying to watch a movie" without fear of having the shit beaten out of me, being pelted with food, or making them even louder and more annoying. At my house, no one is bringing a fucking seven year old to watch The Dark Knight (seriously, W. T. F.), and no one is putting their grody feet up on the back of my seat, i.e. in my head - speaking of seats, I can sit where I damned well like; I don't have some prepubescent lobotomised droog at the box office helpfully putting me and my friends in the third goddamn row from the front on the extreme left of screen, so watching a movie becomes some kind of bad trip hallucination with hot-air-ballon faces and eyes the size of car tires.

Fucking movies.
posted by smoke at 5:25 PM on September 14, 2012 [4 favorites]


The big rule of movie-going behaviour I learned (it took a long time though) is "Thou shall not hotbox in thy Honda Civic and giggle during Serious Films About Depressing Subjects".

Ah yes! How High, Boxing Day 2001. We missed the movie by 5 minutes, so, what now? "Let's go box the jeep!" Indeed we got too high, missed the next showing, kept boxing. We were in that jeep for over 4 hours, and when we finally got in there my friend dropped his beer through the drink holder during the previews, thus getting us all tossed out since we couldn't stop laughing.

All well, probably better than the movie.
posted by mannequito at 6:08 PM on September 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


and oh shit I wanna go watch a movie at smoke's house.
posted by mannequito at 6:10 PM on September 14, 2012


I agree about all the annoyances of the contemporary theater-going experience but there really is nothing like seeing a film with an audience.
posted by shakespeherian at 6:46 PM on September 14, 2012


Jammers are not legal. Building your entire theatre as a faraday cage is legal, but would be very expensive and would require designing it from the ground-up to block EMF.

A conspiracy nut I know claims that the Meditation Room at the UN Building is a Faraday cage. He claims to have poked into a corner with a key and pulled up a bit of wallpaper to reveal copper screen. Perhaps a NYC MeFite can pop in with their cell phone and check it out, it's open to the public.
posted by charlie don't surf at 7:40 PM on September 14, 2012


Prince Charles Cinema? London? Last time I was there I was wearing lacy underwear and singing along to THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW at midnight.

Oh, wait, that was sixteen years ago. Sheesh. Where does the time go?
posted by alasdair at 3:17 PM on September 15, 2012


and the BBC now have a report 'Cinema ninjas' to silence naughty film-goers'
posted by Z303 at 4:45 AM on September 18, 2012


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