I have written two blogs about the ordeal of going to the cinema (it literally was called that!). That was three years ago and not much has changed. I go to the cinema every week and endure screaming and crying children who are too young to be watching the movie with us.
Yesterday we went to see Crazy Rich Asians (very funny, clever and sad – you have to see it). As soon as walked into the movie we saw a baby in a mum’s lap and two kids under 3 sitting on seats in the front-ish rows. All three of us were perplexed of why the kids were in this movie. This is a PG13 movie, but we knew it was not suitable for young children and especially babies.
What happened as soon as the movie started? Well you guessed it, the baby screamed at the top of its lungs and the other two started crying. This went on for half of the movie. During that time I tweeted twice to the cinema chain.
In screen 5 at @voxcinemas mall of emirates and there are little babies screaming and crying whilst watching crazy rich kids. They shouldn’t be in this cinema. They are disturbing all of us.
— Shelina (@shelo9) August 19, 2018
(Ignore the fact that I gave the movie the wrong title – I was stressed!).
After about an hour, a gentleman got up walked out and must have complained as a staff member finally came in to check on the situation. The mother walked out with the baby, but the kids stayed in this non-age appropriate movie making a noise.
The cinema chain didn’t respond to my tweets until after the movie had finished. By then it was too late. The movie experience had been spoiled by these inconsiderate parents and the staff at the cinema.
The family should not have been allowed to buy a ticket for this movie with their children and definitely not allowed to enter the screening. As discussed in my previous blogs, if the movie is PG13 and 15 and the kids are escorted with their parents, they are allowed to watch the movie. That is the absurd law right now. No one with common sense has queried why movies have 13 or 15 on the end of the PG bit. Might as well make all the movies PG in that case, no?
I spoke to the Duty Manger of Vox Cinemas today and she agreed with my views on allowing these kids into adult movies.
The only way we can change this situation currently is for all of us to complain about our movie-going experience. Only with consistent, persistent complaining will upper management at these chains and the ministry take this situation seriously and hopefully change movie classifications, prevent kids from going to movies above PG 13 unless they are 11/12 and above, and also stop kids going to any movies after 9pm.
If you have bad experience at the cinema please do the following:
a. If it’s a PG13 or above and there are kids under 10 in the screening (preferably screaming) please complain to the cinema chain. Every time this happens.
b. Check if the staff come and review the screen and remove any noisy patrons from the cinema. They are allowed to remove anyone causing a disturbance and either refund them or put them in a more age appropriate movie. If no staff help, complain to the manager or on social media.
The chains are talking to the ministry about the film classification but for now, it is falling on deaf ears. We all need to keep complaining so that this is taken seriously. Yes the chains will lose money, but they will gain more happy returning cinema goers.
Let me know if you get a positive result from your complaints and hopefully soon we will start having an enjoyable experience watching movies here.
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