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At the movies
March 7th 2003, 04:14 CET by CheesyPoof

If you've been to the movies lately then no doubt you have seen some advertisements before the previews started (those other commercials).  With advertising so pervasive it used to be that the movies were a respite from this, after all, you're paying for the movie directly, unlike TV.  Not surprisingly some people don't like this so they filed suit  against the theater operators.  They even have a web site.  Theater chains are doing this despite record levels of attendance.  Roger Ebert piped up saying that people should walk out and demand their money back if they don't like it.

What does the 'crap think about this?  Does advertising before a movie bother you, is it here to stay?  Is this lawsuit ridiculous?  What's next, product placement in games?
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#1 by yotsuya
2003-03-07 04:17:10
It's been going on for a long time. I don't even notice it.

Allowing the LCD to unduly influence design decisions is what leads to Gladiator winning best picture. -Shadarr
#2 by yotsuya
2003-03-07 04:17:24
Unleash the fury, bitches!

Allowing the LCD to unduly influence design decisions is what leads to Gladiator winning best picture. -Shadarr
#3 by chris
2003-03-07 04:17:29
cwb@shaithis.com http://www.cerebraldebris.com
I agree wholeheartedly that sitting through commercials at the movies is absurd. It really makes me angry, to the point where I have drastically reduced the already relatively low amount of movie watching I do. I hate that going to see a two hour movie is a three hour event. Most theatres in SoCal show no less than eight commercials before the movie, and then follow it up with previews... and there are even so many of THOSE that it gets annoying.

I wish I felt like there was anything I could do to stop this, other than just not going to the movies... which of course is the logical solution, but it's not really an enjoyable one. :\

-chris
#4 by Gabe
2003-03-07 04:22:22
http://www.dartpublishing.com
It kind of bugs me that often the ads are just the TV version blown up to movie screen size and they look horrible.
#5 by yotsuya
2003-03-07 04:24:23
To be honest with you, I'd have a bigger issue if they INTERRUPTED the movie to show you ads.

Allowing the LCD to unduly influence design decisions is what leads to Gladiator winning best picture. -Shadarr
#6 by Matt Perkins
2003-03-07 04:27:43
wizardque@yahoo.com http://whatwouldmattdo.com/
yeah, I'm going to agree with the idea that it doesn't bother me once the movie starts...  I like previews and 2-5 commercials before the movie doesn't bother me at all.

"It's all fair game once you click "post", mind you." - Bailey
#7 by Greg
2003-03-07 04:29:52
I don't like how they increase movie ticket prices and show commercials at the front. Use one to offset the other, thanks.

blah blah bleh
#8 by Bailey
2003-03-07 04:30:18
I'd rather walk in at the last minute to avoid the ads, but as seating becomes such a bitch, this method does not succeed often. As for games, if they actually used them in online subscription services to reduce charges to customers, I'd be all for them. As it is, it's just more money thrown into the heap.

I, Complainicus
#9 by Matt Perkins
2003-03-07 04:30:53
wizardque@yahoo.com http://whatwouldmattdo.com/
As for product placement in games...  I'm all for it.  Why not have car with brand names on them instead of the developers making up car games, shoes with brand names, buildings with real billboards...  that could cut down on development costs, a lot.

"It's all fair game once you click "post", mind you." - Bailey
#10 by yotsuya
2003-03-07 04:32:21
Anyone for Crazy Taxi?

Allowing the LCD to unduly influence design decisions is what leads to Gladiator winning best picture. -Shadarr
#11 by bago
2003-03-07 04:35:58
manga_Rando@hotmail.com
Being a procrastinator, more ads means I miss less of the beginning of movies.

The seeming unanimity among poets makes them look suspiciously like a herd of independent minds.
#12 by Creole Ned
2003-03-07 04:38:12
Why not have car with brand names on them instead of the developers making up car games, shoes with brand names, buildings with real billboards...  that could cut down on development costs, a lot.

And I'm sure the savings would be passed directly onto the consumer, just like they are in movie theaters!

"I don't bemoan the great paste" - LPMiller
#13 by chris
2003-03-07 04:38:31
cwb@shaithis.com http://www.cerebraldebris.com
Most of us, having grown up completely oversaturated with advertisements, don't even mind PAYING for them anymore.

How utterly shocking...

-chris
#14 by Greg
2003-03-07 04:38:39
#9 Matt Perkins

As for product placement in games...  I'm all for it.  Why not have car with brand names on them instead of the developers making up car games, shoes with brand names, buildings with real billboards...  that could cut down on development costs, a lot.
Matt, they do. Just look at all the sports games out there. Having actual advertising in those games makes it seem more realistic. When you see a stadium or a NASCAR track in a game, having the same types of advertisements on the fašades pulls you into the game as if you were at the actual building.

blah blah bleh
#15 by Warren Marshall
2003-03-07 04:39:05
http://www.wantonhubris.com/
To be honest with you, I'd have a bigger issue if they INTERRUPTED the movie to show you ads.

You KNOW that's the next step.

What?
#16 by Eric T. Cheng
2003-03-07 04:39:27
erictcheng@hotmail.com
I rarely go see movies these days, not only because of the inane number of commercials and teasers (which are reveal so much about the movies there's no need to see the movies themselves) but also the constantly increasing ticket prices. I rather wait six months for the DVDs if it's not a movie I HAVE to see on the big screen (eg. Star Wars, Lord of the Rings).

Kilt Wearing Pixel Pushing Monkey Boy
IMDB Entry
DVD Collection
#17 by Eric T. Cheng
2003-03-07 04:40:03
erictcheng@hotmail.com
To be honest with you, I'd have a bigger issue if they INTERRUPTED the movie to show you ads.


It's called product placements.

Kilt Wearing Pixel Pushing Monkey Boy
IMDB Entry
DVD Collection
#18 by Warren Marshall
2003-03-07 04:40:48
http://www.wantonhubris.com/
I rarely go see movies these days, not only because of the inane number of commercials and teasers (which are reveal so much about the movies there's no need to see the movies themselves) but also the constantly increasing ticket prices. I rather wait six months for the DVDs if it's not a movie I HAVE to see on the big screen (eg. Star Wars, Lord of the Rings).

Eric is a fun date.

What?
#19 by Foodbunny
2003-03-07 04:41:53
foodbunny@attbi.com http://www.foodbunny.com
There! uses their product placement intelligently.  You can buy a pair of Nikes and they actually look like the real show when you put them on your character.  Same with a few other clothing brands... in a game where changing your look has quite a bit of emphasis this makes sense.

All I want movie theaters to do is go back to listing the actual start time.  Used to be that the movie started when the paper said and the time before that was preview time.  I don't like the new system of lying to you about when the movie will begin.

"It's great to be known, but it's even better to be known as strange." - Takeshi Kaga
#20 by Foodbunny
2003-03-07 04:42:40
foodbunny@attbi.com http://www.foodbunny.com
Real shoe.  Me dumb.

"It's great to be known, but it's even better to be known as strange." - Takeshi Kaga
#21 by Eric T. Cheng
2003-03-07 04:43:17
erictcheng@hotmail.com
I don't find going to movies a good date idea... Half an hour waiting in line then another half an hour going through commercials and trailers and then ninety minutes of not talking to each other while trying not to kill the prick behind you for his letting his cell ring.

Kilt Wearing Pixel Pushing Monkey Boy
IMDB Entry
DVD Collection
#22 by Creole Ned
2003-03-07 04:43:48
Nice shoes are like a show, so it's all good.

"I don't bemoan the great paste" - LPMiller
#23 by Warren Marshall
2003-03-07 04:44:26
http://www.wantonhubris.com/
I don't find going to movies a good date idea... Half an hour waiting in line then another half an hour going through commercials and trailers and then ninety minutes of not talking to each other while trying not to kill the prick behind you for his letting his cell ring.

He's more fun than a hammer to the testicles.  But not by much.

What?
#24 by Eric T. Cheng
2003-03-07 04:52:03
erictcheng@hotmail.com
He's more fun than a hammer to the testicles.  But not by much.


Ironically, enough that's how most of my dates end. :(

Kilt Wearing Pixel Pushing Monkey Boy
IMDB Entry
DVD Collection
#25 by yotsuya
2003-03-07 04:54:13
Eric goes to kink sites.

Allowing the LCD to unduly influence design decisions is what leads to Gladiator winning best picture. -Shadarr
#26 by Hugin
2003-03-07 05:26:20
lmccain@nber.org
Speaking of movies, I went to see a film called Russian Ark tonight.  It's filmed in the Hermitage museum in St. Petersburg, and it...well..it sort of wends it's way through various moments in Russian history, and also shows off the Hermitage, and huge numbers of actors in period costumes and suchlike.  The extra neat thing is, it's all shot in one continuous take.  No cutting, no editing.  The camera starts, the movie starts, and it keeps going seamlessly till the end.  They had to create unique equipment to make it work at all (no film cannister or DV storage device at the time could run long enough).  And the poor bastard who worked the steadycam rig for the whole thing deserves an Oscar, he's maneuvering through big crowds of dancing people, negotiating around priceless furniture and artwork, through doorways, going up and down lots of stairs (frequently backwards), chasing people up and down hallways, with no breaks at all.  Really incredible stuff.

The thing has flaws, the narrative is confusing unless you know Russian history pretty well, and the very mobile camerwork might get to people with motion sickness issues (though it's hardly Blair Witch Project), and because it's impossible to really set up soundstage quality lighting in the Hermitage, some areas are rather dark.  But it's definitely a fascinating movie.
#27 by Caryn
2003-03-07 05:30:48
carynlaw@pacbell.net http://www.hellchick.net
Hugin:

I saw a preview for that movie online and have been dying to see it. I'm kind of a Russophile and have been to the Hermitage and love Russian history, so it's got all the pieces for me.

"I felt that I was inhabiting some kind of interdimensional nexus where the sum total suck from this and all other universes crossed paths." - Terata
#28 by CheesyPoof
2003-03-07 05:31:30
Going to see TheTwo Towers was a 4 hour affair.  3 for the movie itself (good), ~25 min worth of preview, another ~10 for commercial and the rest getting there early to get a seat (and watching the slide show commercials during that).

I don't go to movies terribly often, but this sure isn't going to make me want to go more often.

I'd rather walk in at the last minute to avoid the ads, but as seating becomes such a bitch, this method does not succeed often.

This could work as long as you don't have to see a movie the weekend it opens.  One of the things the people are suing over is that the start time in the paper should be the time the movie starts, as it is now it's when the commercials (then previews) start so you have no idea if you should be 5 min. late or 10.
#29 by nothing
2003-03-07 05:33:19
The whole point of the date is the time spent together.  You can see a movie by yourself, but the date is all about the waiting in line and the dinner and stuff.

I think that the movies are gonna run into the same problem that internet advertising ran into of not being targeted correctly.  Movie previews make sense because if I'm already at the theater, I may have some interest in going there again, but I don't know that too many people at the theater are actively shopping for a car or cell phone or whatever.  Maybe if they advertised newly released DVDs or something the ads would go over better.

I recall reading somewhere that the actual movie theater itself has a really bad deal with the distributors.  Something like the movie company gets 90% of all ticketsales.  So the movie ticket prices going up doesn't help the theater that much.

The world makes me go tharn
#30 by Caryn
2003-03-07 05:34:54
carynlaw@pacbell.net http://www.hellchick.net
I always thought that movies were a great first date. That way there's no pressure to chit chat about stupid things, and you've got something to talk about afterwards (the movie). If s/he laughs in all the right spots during the movie, you know you've got a potential second date.

"I felt that I was inhabiting some kind of interdimensional nexus where the sum total suck from this and all other universes crossed paths." - Terata
#31 by Foodbunny
2003-03-07 05:38:59
foodbunny@attbi.com http://www.foodbunny.com
I don't recommend movies as a first date myself, and I always drove my male friends looking for advice away from them.

"It's great to be known, but it's even better to be known as strange." - Takeshi Kaga
#32 by nothing
2003-03-07 05:41:20
care to elaborate?

The world makes me go tharn
#33 by Sgt Hulka
2003-03-07 05:43:44
Do the commercials piss me off?
Yes the commercials kinda piss me off, but I quickly forget about them.  I just wish they advertised the commercials start and stop time in the newspapers along with the ACTUAL movie start time.  I could then schedule around them.  I guess it's no biggie since trailers are nothing more than commercials themselves and they've been doing that for years.  The theater owners are just trying to make a buck since typically as much as 80% of the income during the initial one/two week run goes straight to the studio, with only 20% going to the theater chains.  That's probably why we have $25.00 Cokes and Popcorn buckets you have to apply for low interest financing in order to obtain.

Have I been lately?
Yes. I just saw Cradle 2 the Grave.  There are some fantastic action scenes in that flick.  It's a high quality action type flick with some innovative chase scenes, kung-fu moves, and the story is pretty comic-booky (is that a word?, well, it is now)..

I did find DMX way too broody.  The rap music drug the film down,.  This flick is best to ever use the CLICK CLICK BOOM! SONG.  The adrenaline really starts flowing when that song kicks in and Jet Li opens a can of whoop ass on a midget!  

Very fun flick.

The Best Worst Music you've evar herd!
#34 by Warren Marshall
2003-03-07 05:45:03
http://www.wantonhubris.com/
I find movies are good dates when you're trying to get to know someone for the same reasons that Caryn mentioned.  You can tell a lot about the person by the way they react to the movie and you don't have the constant pressure of trying to make bullshit small talk all evening.  Afterwards, you can discuss the movie, which is great because it gives you something to focus on.

This works especially well for shy people ... which describes most dates I've been on.  I'm shy enough for two people ...

What?
#35 by BabiG
2003-03-07 05:45:22
I always thought that movies were a great first date. That way there's no pressure to chit chat about stupid things, and you've got something to talk about afterwards (the movie). If s/he laughs in all the right spots during the movie, you know you've got a potential second date.

Wow, I've always thought it was a bad first date, for almost the same reasons. You don't get to talk, and you don't know her well enough to do anything else besides sit next to her in the dark for a few hours. For a later date sure, but on a first date I like something less formal, where you can find out about the girl. A coffeeshop or the park or something, where it's not as binding as a dinner (when you run out of stuff to say or it's going badly you can end the date, with dinner you have to finish eating, wait for the check etc.), but not as uninvolved as a movie.

"Guess who write show? ...
Me! I write it!"
#36 by Warren Marshall
2003-03-07 05:46:59
http://www.wantonhubris.com/
Oh, and the people wanting them to tell you when the movie starts so you can skip the commercials are dreaming.  That would totally circumvent the reason companies pay for advertising space at the theatre in the first place.

What?
#37 by bago
2003-03-07 05:49:22
manga_Rando@hotmail.com
It helps if you know the manager.

The seeming unanimity among poets makes them look suspiciously like a herd of independent minds.
#38 by "Lurker #2501"
2003-03-07 05:52:46
2501@lurker.com thegodanubis.net/hairball
To be honest with you, I'd have a bigger issue if they INTERRUPTED the movie to show you ads.

You KNOW that's the next step.


If that happens, expect to hear about theaters being torn down by mobs of angry crowds. I won't mind it much. It'll be a good way to walk out of a theater with a couple of arcade machines and that popcorn cart out front. :D
#39 by Sgt Hulka
2003-03-07 05:58:43
Oh, and I saw Old School a few weeks ago.
Old School was funny. The first half was stronger than the second half.  The second half of the film didn't seem as inspired and fell into common plot devices to come to a quick conclusion, but the laughs were big and hard thoughout most of the film.  

BTW: It's NOTHING like Animal House other than it takes place near a college campus, and there are college kids at their parties.

The Best Worst Music you've evar herd!
#40 by Funkdrunk
2003-03-07 06:05:03
jflavius@bellatlantic.net
#34 Warren Marshall
I find movies are good dates when you're trying to get to know someone for the same reasons that Caryn mentioned.  You can tell a lot about the person by the way they react to the movie and you don't have the constant pressure of trying to make bullshit small talk all evening.  Afterwards, you can discuss the movie, which is great because it gives you something to focus on.

This works especially well for shy people ... which describes most dates I've been on.  I'm shy enough for two people ...


I've found that movies don't work well for me, simply because I detest the "movie theater experience".  And it's a trite convention as well, the dinner and a movie thing.  I've found that you learn more about a person doing something off the wall, something that can make someone put their hair down, so to speak.  I've gone on first dates to a driving range, interactive theater, bowling, a pool hall, an arcade/entertainment center, and a museum to name a few.  Most women have told me that the fact that we went to someplace like this guaranteed me a second date.

It's usually when I turn to the "dinner and movie" convention, that I lose them.

Funk.

An idealist is one who, on noticing that roses smell better than a cabbage, concludes that it will also make better soup.  ~Henry L. Mencken
#41 by CheesyPoof
2003-03-07 06:05:07
I recall reading somewhere that the actual movie theater itself has a really bad deal with the distributors.  Something like the movie company gets 90% of all ticketsales.  So the movie ticket prices going up doesn't help the theater that much.

My understanding of the situation is that for the first 10 days of a movies release all (or most anyway) of the ticket sales go to the movie studio.  After 10 days it's the theaters money.  Intersetinly enough I got a free movie gift certificate from Sony/Lowes and it said not valid for first 10 days of release so I assume that the reason.

I always thought that movies were a great first date. That way there's no pressure to chit chat about stupid things, and you've got something to talk about afterwards (the movie).

For a first date you want to get to know the other person so sitting in darkness for two hours next to someone you don't know is uncomfortable.  Doing an activity is much better, like bowling or minature golf.
#42 by Caryn
2003-03-07 06:07:18
carynlaw@pacbell.net http://www.hellchick.net
Okay, I stand corrected on the "movie as a good first date" thing. I've been married for nearly eight years, so what do I know about what makes a good first date anymore?

"I felt that I was inhabiting some kind of interdimensional nexus where the sum total suck from this and all other universes crossed paths." - Terata
#43 by Funkdrunk
2003-03-07 06:08:58
jflavius@bellatlantic.net
#42 Caryn
Okay, I stand corrected on the "movie as a good first date" thing. I've been married for nearly eight years, so what do I know about what makes a good first date anymore?


Well, to be fair Caryn, just because it doesn't work for some, doesn't mean it doesn't work.

Funk.

An idealist is one who, on noticing that roses smell better than a cabbage, concludes that it will also make better soup.  ~Henry L. Mencken
#44 by Sgt Hulka
2003-03-07 06:10:05
I took a date to a movie once. It was Return of the Jedi.  She almost killed me afterwards with a weapon she made out of her drinking straw.

Damn Ewoks! ruined it for me!

Damn you Lucas!!!

The Best Worst Music you've evar herd!
#45 by Eric T. Cheng
2003-03-07 06:12:01
erictcheng@hotmail.com
I recall reading somewhere that the actual movie theater itself has a really bad deal with the distributors.  Something like the movie company gets 90% of all ticketsales.  So the movie ticket prices going up doesn't help the theater that much.


As each week a movie runs the percentage of the ticket sales going to the studio decreases, thus second run theatres make more money from the tickets. Fox/LucasFilm has a lot of pull in regards to the Star Wars prequels as they demanded theatres to show the movies for X number of weeks, which the theatres complain that they could be making money from new releases ten weeks into the Star Wars prequel's run.

Kilt Wearing Pixel Pushing Monkey Boy
IMDB Entry
DVD Collection
#46 by Eric T. Cheng
2003-03-07 06:14:49
erictcheng@hotmail.com
For a first date you want to get to know the other person so sitting in darkness for two hours next to someone you don't know is uncomfortable.  Doing an activity is much better, like bowling or minature golf.


The only time I've ever gone to a movie on a first date was with a female friend (a gorgeous long-legged redhead BTW) I already knew, so there was no real pressure to "get to know her" as much as I would otherwise.

Kilt Wearing Pixel Pushing Monkey Boy
IMDB Entry
DVD Collection
#47 by "Torias"
2003-03-07 06:49:22
I don't mind the commercials, as long as they aren't annoying...

I get to the cinema early and just enjoy relaxing...

though I generally go to the cinema straight after work though, so it's just sitting and unwinding before the movie starts...

hmmm, might check if there is anything playing tonight :-)
#48 by Bailey
2003-03-07 07:11:02
Warren

You KNOW that's the next step.

And I've got a bunch of molotovs fermenting in the garden shed for the day they do.

This works especially well for shy people ... which describes most dates I've been on.  I'm shy enough for two people ...

Making you hit yourself, breaking your horn-rimmed glasses.

What's actually been bugging me lately is the amount of "we made this" splash screens, logos, and bik movies you have to watch when you fire up a game. Like I fucking care. Tell me who you are when you roll the credits, or at least keep it to a minimum, my even having to mash the escape key five times to reach the first menu is a task that should not be.

I, Complainicus
#49 by Gabe
2003-03-07 07:12:39
http://www.dartpublishing.com
I agree, Bailey. Just display most of that crap the first time the program is launched.
#50 by Warren Marshall
2003-03-07 07:14:11
http://www.wantonhubris.com/
You KNOW that's the next step.

And I've got a bunch of molotovs fermenting in the garden shed for the day they do.

You know, that reminds me of something ... when I was in Mexico on business a few years back, I went to the theatre near my hotel to see Speed.  Halfway through the movie, they had an intermission so you could get food or take a leak or whatever.  Never seen that in a theatre before.

What's actually been bugging me lately is the amount of "we made this" splash screens, logos, and bik movies you have to watch when you fire up a game. Like I fucking care. Tell me who you are when you roll the credits, or at least keep it to a minimum, my even having to mash the escape key five times to reach the first menu is a task that should not be.

I couldn't agree more.  Grandia II on the Dreamcast is a spectacular example of this train wreck of a philosophy.  It's even better than most PC games because you can't skip it.  You even get to see which sound and video encoders they used.  Valuable information, to be sure.

What?
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