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Letters to the Editor

Letter: At the movies, then and now

To the Editor:

“The reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.” You’ve probably heard this Mark Twain quote before. 

That quote came to mind the other day when I went to a movie in a theater after a long time.

When television was in its infancy, some people felt it would mean the demise of the movie industry. Some small town movie theaters did close, but movies are very successful today. I don’t know if this actually happened but I heard the following anecdote at the time. In the early days of television when people stayed home to watch it, a patron called to see when the movie started and the theater owner said, “What time can you get here?”  

What a wonderful experience it was to see the movie.  

As a teenager, I loved going to movies – especially to a Sunday matinee. They were shown in something, called Technicolor.

Things have changed. I felt like Rip Van Winkle when I saw what has happened in the years since my teens. I also felt like the first man on the Moon saying, “One small step for man and a giant leap for me.” I have gone to movies since my teens but this is about the changes since then and now.

Another surprise was the wonderful lounge chairs and wide aisles! Abundant snacks were available. This was a far cry from days of old. No snacks back then – too messy, you know. I’d sometimes sneak in a Mr. Holloway sucker keeping it out of sight until the lights were dimmed and bringing the wrapper home with me lest I the owner ban me forever.

This film was British and hard to understand. You know what they say, “Great Britain and the United States are two countries separated by a huge pond and a common language.” 

The subtitles were not on the bottom of the huge screen, but on a tiny screen without pictures affixed to the arm of my seat. I kept looking at the bottom of the huge screen from force of habit forgetting to look at the tiny gizmo so conveniently placed next to me. What a grand experience! All synchronized perfectly with the movie. I couldn’t get past the modern technology and logistics to fully enjoy the movie. So I’ll have to go again. 

Mil Misic

DeKalb 

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