The war on texters and talkers in movie theaters rages on. Today film critic David Edelstein published an angry and admirably unhinged piece on Vulture describing his recent experience at a BAMCinematek screening of “Mother of George,” which he calls a lyrical, meditative — and largely quiet — film. Unfortunately, a couple behind him wouldn’t stop yapping. He calls them “the Ugly Couple,” which is a bit ad-hominem, but an attitude it’s hard not to secretly sympathize with if you’ve ever had to endure someone’s unwanted running conversation or illuminated smartphone screen during a movie.
Edelstein admits he ultimately “threw a fit — just lost it” when the couple wouldn’t shut up. He also throws a bit of a fit spontaneously in the piece:
It was like this. These two … persons, a man and a woman
(God, I’m so angry I wanna just go LN26IRTUV3C55CUXWX11111!!!!!11#$%Y###%$#W####SDGZ) who happened to be sitting behind me decided to
keep up a running conversation during the film — a lyrical, meditative,
exquisitely photographed portrait of the Brooklyn-based Nigerian community and
what happens when a young wife is unable to conceive a child.
He then asks two questions. First, has culture become “so private” that people don’t know how to act considerately in public? (Hard to know what he means by private: Social media-leaning? Home-viewing inclined?) And second, do theater managers feel it’s their obligation to stop talking and texting in its irritating tracks? Certain theaters, particularly the Alamo Drafthouse but also the Landmark, are more proactive on this front.