Tuesday, April 29, 2008

See what you can make of this

Over at VFR there was a short discussion about Ben Stein's "Expelled." Well, that's not exactly the case. The focus of the entry is centered more on complaints of "noise polution" than on the movie. To wit:

LA replies to Sam B.:

I went to see it Friday at something called the Regal E-Walk 13 Theater on West 42nd Street, the only venue where it was still playing in Manhattan, but I didn't see the movie. I left the theater after 20 minutes. It is a theater designed like a torture chamber, with surround-sound speakers turned up to a volume louder than the loudest sound you've ever heard in your life. I would recommend against seeing any movie at any Regal Theater. I'll wait to see it on DVD.

Then later in the conversation LA writes:

The theater was set up with several huge speakers along the sides of the theaters, spaced just a few feet from each other. I never saw anything like it. The voices would come from the direction of the screen, and sound effects (I won't call it music) came from the side speakers, overwhelmingly loud. But even when there was only human voice, it was set staggeringly loud.

I'm going to complain to the City about this theater. (emphasis mine)

And that last line is the focus of this post. I wrote a quick email to LA explaining that I didn't understand the basis of his taking his complaint to the authorities. He replied that "there are laws about noise, and a number to call to complain." Now, I'm going on very little here and I'm making a few assumptions, but in my neck of the woods, just going on the raw material I have before me, we call that "liberalism," and the people who engage in such "liberals."

Maybe one of you can help straighten me out.


feminizedwesternmale said...

It saddens me to agree with you.

If it is bad enough to complain about, a conservative should have the "stones" to ask to speak to the manager, to register the complaint, not run crying to the gubmint/bureaucracy at first drop.

This mentality is that which gives us the lawsuit, the Katrina-Debit Card, and "free" health care.

Makes me cringe. Hope it is a slip.

Call Me Mom said...

Good to see you back. My computer has been doing some funny things with your page, so I didn't realize there were new posts until now.

I'm hoping to see that movie when I get a break in the schedule, maybe this weekend.

Terry Morris said...


That there are laws governing speaker noise inside a privately owned theater (anywhere in the United States of America) is mind boggling to me. That there are "conservatives" ready and willing to utilize them at the drop of a hat is, well, quite disturbing to say the least.

I'm reminded of the time several years back when my state inadvisedly created a task force against littering. There were signs put up on all the highways with a phone number to call to report litterbugs. The idea was to get the tag number of the litterer and report it (anonymously) to the authorities via the phone number. I knew this was a bad idea from the gitgo. I could easily imagine hundreds, maybe even thousands, of false reports of littering called in to the state to "get back" at someone the caller had a personal beef with. Thankfully, that whole concept has since been abandoned in Oklahoma.

Taking such a complaint to the authorities oughta be a last resort for anyone calling themselves "conservative," in my opinion. In fact, I can't for the life of me see any principled reason for taking a noise complaint at a privately owned movie theater to the authorities, ever. I agree with you, of course, that this kind of mentality spawns all those things you listed, and more.

Thanks for the comments.


I'm waiting for it to come out on DVD. I don't care to try and watch it at the theater for the very reason LA complains about. The last time I was in a movie theater I literally couldn't hear myself think, much less enjoy the showing. However, it never even occured to me that I should lodge a complaint with the authorities when nothing was done to resolve the issue at the theater, I just stopped going to the theater. I simply do not get it; is it considered some kind of fundamental human right not to be offended by the noise level in a movie theater? Is that it? Please help me! ;)


Call Me Mom said...

One might argue that noise beyond a certain decibel level causes permanent damage to an individual's hearing. But no one is forcing that individual to go to the theatre or stay there.

We take earplugs when we want to see something on the big screen.