In case you haven’t yet heard this story, I think it certainly bears repeating here. We’ve talked many times on Film Junk about the frustrating experiences that one can have at the movies when other moviegoers are talking, goofing around, and otherwise disturbing you. Well, on Christmas Day in Philadelphia, one man was pushed too far — unfortunately, he also just happened to be packing heat. After telling one particular family to be quiet and throwing popcorn at them, he eventually approached the father and pulled out a .380-caliber gun, shooting him in the arm. The theatre immediately evacuated and the attacker sat back down to enjoy a few more peaceful minutes of The Curious Case of Benjamin Button before the police arrived.
As horrible as this is, and as mentally disturbed as the shooter must have been, I think there are a lot of us who can identify with his reaction to some extent. Really, when you think about it, it’s not unlike road rage. Now I definitely don’t think I would be very comfortable knowing that someone in my theatre was carrying a gun — especially if it was a movie that gets the adrenaline flowing, like Rambo or something. On the other hand, people might think twice about talking during a movie if there were serious repercussions to be had… you know, aside from having a 16 year old usher asking you to be quiet. Maybe ushers themselves should start carrying weapons? Either way, I’m hoping this news story will get the message out to a few more people who didn’t realize that talking during a public screening of a film is not their God-given right.