books Film Geek

Return of the King

Finally got around to seeing Return of the King yesterday. Mumble mumble, couldn’t get Gold Class tickets before now, mumble mumble. I’m a little miffed that on top of the $30/seat Gold Class price (expensive perhaps, but the service and comfort do make it worth it for movies like this) I was stung an additional $10 fee because I booked through their web site.

Uhh.. now look, I know that web sites aren’t necessarily cheap to build, but once built the whole idea is that they eliminate having to pay for a human to do mundane things like take bookings. Save the humans for pointing you to the right cinema and serving the drinks, that’s what I reckon. And for fixing the Ticket ATM thing, which in theory should have been able to spit out the tickets when we arrived, but in practice decided the whole thing was too hard, and spat the dummy instead, redirecting me to the ticket booth. If the procurement of tickets was all automated, it should theoretically save the cinema company money, and thus be cheaper, not more expensive.

Anyway, what a ripper of a movie. Even though I knew pretty much what was going to happen, still very exciting, right up until the very end, which possibly dragged on a tad too long. At almost three and a half hours long, I’m left wondering how long the extended version will be when it comes out on DVD, and if its cinematic release will necessitate an interval. Quite a few people were seen dashing out to the loo midway through. Spectacular scenery and special effects. Overall: excellent, thoroughly enjoyable.Thumbs up!

I also finished reading David Malouf’s Johnno over the weekend. Quite interesting throughout really, though possibly more so for the fact that it documents times and places that my father grew up and lived in. Without that link I’m not sure it would have been as enjoyable, but for me, certainly a good read.Thumbs up!

Next I tackle something much more in keeping with my generation: Neal Stephenson’s The Diamond Age.

By Daniel Bowen

Transport blogger / campaigner and spokesperson for the Public Transport Users Association / professional geek.
Bunurong land, Melbourne, Australia.
Opinions on this blog are all mine.

9 replies on “Return of the King”

I think cinemas are throwing their business to the home theatre lions by not having intervals in long films. It would necessitate more logistical work in getting people in and out of the cinema but it does work at theatres, so cinemas should be able to manage it (they used to years ago).

We’re fans of Hoyts’ offering = ‘La Premiere’. Have you tried it? You get to sit in bigger seats up on the Balcony and look down on the plebs in the Stalls. You don’t get at-seat service (you have to carry your drinks from the bar yourself), but you do get free self-service popcorn and soft drinks. It’s cheaper than Gold Class too!

I saw ROTK this past weekend here in Japan. I think the Australia Gold Class cinema is about the same size as a Japanese multiplex cinema. Anyhow, this was the first night of the ROTK screenings in my city, and tickets were hard to come by. My ertswhile partner has a coworker who was able to get them for us. They were Y1500 (A$18.25) which is a bit cheaper than the average Y1800 (A$22) for a regular movie here, so that wasn’t too bad. What WAS bad were the three non-Japanese who came in just before starting time. Oh, sorry 4 non-Japanese – they brought A BABY!
It also seems that in this group – a couple, their baby and a friend – only the friend had seen the movie, and so the male in the couple kjept asking his friend what was going on in the move. In very audible Spanish! I mention that they were non-Japanese because there aren’t a huge over-supply of ‘gaikokujin’ (foreigners) in my city, and the chances of finding us sitting together in a cinema is a rarity. But the chatting. And the baby. I think the baby had the best manners – it did burble every so often, but, given the sound and fury of themovie, I *did* expect it to cry, and to its credit, it didn’t. But bring a A BABY to a cinema, to a film that I’d waited ages to see, and on a night on which people very serious about seeing the movie were in attendance…oh well…

ROTK did really drag out that last hour – you need a very well trained bladder. I’m halfway through Cryptonomicon at the moment – nearly missed my train stop a couple of times so far!! Loved Snow Crash. Let us know what The Diamond Age is like…..

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