Just over a week ago, I had a well-intentioned customer leave a message on my theatre’s answering machine with a suggestion: “Do not play all family movies at the same time.”
She and her husband wanted to see a movie but there was nothing that appealed to them as they try to avoid kid’s movies and she felt that it was a bad business decision.
Unfortunately, she did not leave her number so I could return her call and explain to her that we sometimes have to play the hand we are dealt. During the holiday season, there is usually a higher percentage of family movies and this year, within a two week period, there was Happy Feet 2, Arthur Christmas, Hugo and The Muppets (we were also playing Twilight: Breaking Dawn) and almost no adult-oriented films available within that time period.
If we had the choice, we definitely would love to offer the best selection of films possible.
The other reason I wish I could have called her back was to suggest that Hugo was not necessarily just for a younger audience. In fact, much of the audience going to see the Martin Scorsese-directed film is older and the reaction has been great and I think it could become a classic that parents and grandparents share with generations to come.
And the family movies are still coming. This weekend sees the release of Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chip-Wrecked, the third in the popular series. Another sequel was inevitable as the first two movies had a combined $450-million gross.
In this one, Dave takes the Chipmunks and the Chipettes on a cruise and of course, hijinks ensue. However, Alvin’s actions ultimately cause the six rodents to go overboard to become stranded on a desert island which turns out not to be that deserted.
For those who are not into kid’s movies, Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows opens this weekend with 10 p.m. showings tonight (Thursday).
Robert Downey Jr. returns as Conan Doyle’s famous detective as well as Jude Law as Watson and Rachel McAdams as Adler. The sequel has Holmes investigating a plot by his most famous nemesis, Professor Moriarty, which leads him and Watson out of London to France, Germany and finally Switzerland.
Jared Harris (Mad Men) stars as Moriarty and also starring is Noomi Rapace, who starred in the Swedish version of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.
Coincidentally, the English version of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo starts next Wednesday, along with Mission: Impossible Ghost Protocol and The Adventures of Tin Tin. There are special advance screenings of Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and Mission: Impossible next Tuesday night and it is important to note that theatres will not be able to offer their regular cheap Tuesday prices for those advance screenings on Tuesday. I will do full write-ups for these movies next week.
Rick Davis is the manager of the Capitol Theatre in West Kelowna.