Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Return of the Mack

My love affair with the cinema began, as all the best love affairs do, as a form of forbidden fruit. Growing up, my family went to a church that was quite strict about what one could do for fun. The list started long and just kept growing whenever some holier-than-thou prick made a big enough fuss. This list included, but was not limited to:
  • Dancing
  • Drinking (even a little)
  • Dungeons and Dragons
  • Smoking
  • Magic (any kind of magic)
Last, but not least, I was forbidden from attending the theatre. Not even Disney flicks because, in the words of our minister, "The money you spend on Bambi contributes to the making of other movies [aka Godless smut]" So unlike most people my age, I didn't see ET, Star Wars, Indiana Jones, or any of these childhood-defining movies until after they came out on TV. I even had a Greedo action figure and I had no idea who he was, so I just lumped him in with my GI Joes. He was the ugly one.

The first movie I ever saw in the theatre (and without the permission of my parents) was Who Framed Roger Rabbit?

I still remember feeling a sort of guilty thrill that I was going to see a movie in the forbidden zone. Strange to look back on that now. I started going to movies non-stop for a few years. I even went to Drop Dead Fred because there was nothing else playing that I hadn't seen.

But sometime shortly after university, my love affair ended. I was jaded, it was expensive, and worst of all: people just won't shut up in the theatre. Everyone from teenage asshole guys to ladies who lunch (except instead of lunching they meet and chat all the way through a movie) always end up behind me flapping their gums, making fun of something on screen that they actually just don't get, and kicking my chair...ALWAYS KICKING MY CHAIR!

So I started seeing movies more and more at home...waiting first for the VHS and now for the DVD. I sort of miss the movies, but until I can afford to put a theatre in my home, I will mostly choose to watch from the couch.

But what's the point of all this? Oh yeah, I do go to the movies once in a while and, boy, am I glad I did last weekend. I went to see Superman Returns and it blew me away. I am going to resist the temptation to review the movie or wax poetic about the role that Superman plays in most of our imaginations. I mean, whether you are discussing the Joe Shuster/Jerry Siegel vision of Superman or Nietzsche's ubermensch, the ideal of a super man goes to a far deeper place in our collective conscience than the X-men and Spiderman could ever hope to delve.

But I digress and I promised myself I would not digress. I just want to tell anyone who might happen to read this that you really should see this movie in the theatre. You may not enjoy it as much as I did (I literally laughed, cried, and wanted to cheer at the end) but I doubt you will be disappointed. Dads, take your sons. Sons, take your Dads. Go and enjoy the magic of movies. And if someone behind you is talking or kicking your chair, give em one of these:


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