Cell phones in theatres: Is this really that big a problem?

Eric and I took the girls to a movie last weekend. We always joke at just how many times you are reminded to silence your cell phone before the movie starts. I’m glad they do it, sometimes I do forget and the reminder is entertaining. I don’t often turn my phone off, rather I set it to vibrate and leave it on my lap. My mother is single and I’m just comforted knowing that I can be reached in an emergency. If it goes off, and I see from the caller ID that it’s a call I should take I’ll excuse myself to talk outside. Simple. I can’t remember the last time a cell phone went off in the theatre since they started running those reminders.

Now all of a sudden it’s this big debate and I don’t get why. People were never interrupted by rude people in movie theatres before? The kid kicking the seat behind me is far worse than any cell phone. I’m getting a little tired of folks thinking it’s okay to legislate technology instead of the behavior. How about you let me get my phone call silently and you fine the guy whose phone rings? How’s that?

Speak of cell phones…this is a true story…my uncle died a couple of months ago. We’re at the funeral, and my cousin is at the front of the room giving her eulogy and everyone is emotional. A cell phone rings. The woman behind me (3rd row) answers the phone after the 4th or 5th ring and doesn’t get up to leave. She sits there and tells the person on the phone where and when she’ll meet him, people are giving her dirty looks and her husband tries getting the phone out of her hand. She says to her caller, “I can’t talk now, I’m at a funeral. I’ll call you back.” Pause, louder: “I said I’m at a funeral!” Her husband finally gets the phone out of her hand. So if you want to start jamming cell phone signals, let’s start with funerals, okay?

It’s silly. People are going to be rude. People are going to be inconsiderate and selfish and do what they want to do when they want to do it. Fine, they won’t be able to answer a cell phone in the theatre. Big Whoop. They’ll still bring young children to movies that are completely inappropriate for them. They’ll still leave their sticky candy on the floor. They’ll still talk long after the lights have dimmed.

Funny that it’s the National Association of Theatre Owners who are behind this. Like this is why people aren’t going to movies? It has nothing to do with the $10 ticket prices or how bad movies are, does it?


2 responses to “Cell phones in theatres: Is this really that big a problem?”

  1. This is a funny/timely post.

    My wife and I went to see the Narnia movie last night and some big doof in front of us not only answered his phone, he berated the person for interrupting him at a movie and dropped a few f-bombs. Lots of kids in the theatre, too.

  2. In response to the cell phone in theaters entry. I’m in Beijing, China and there is this weird disfigurement that afflicts residents:they have cell phones growing out of their ears! Honestly, everyone have a phone and it is usually in use or at least ringing, I don’t know how many ring tones are in use, but how do you ever determine whose phone is ringing? I haven’t been to a movie, but in the States, I was constantly reminding my husband to ‘put it on vibrate’ as he is a manager on duty 24/7. Cell phones are the latest target for causality for all that is wrong: I worry far more about people eating while driving, or fussing with kids or smoking than I do talking on a cell phone (if it hands free). As you said, rude is as rude does. Just remember that in certain parts of the world, there are no private phone lines or computers and the cell phone connects the unconnected.