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007: Refund Stirred but Not Shaken

Porn Valley- Friday afternoon I went to see the new double-O-7 movie, or, more accurately, tried to see the new double-O-7 movie at the Promenade in Woodland Hills. Instead, I got shaken, not stirred. Which is because the AMC Theatres sees fit to put supreme power in the hands of kids with little in the way of common sense.

I planned for the 2:40 showing and figured, okay, get there early just in case there’s a line. There’s no line anywhere to be found, and I buy my ticket. It’s 1:45 so the first thing the guy [a kid] in the ticket booth asks me, “Is this for the 1:15 show?” No, I tell him trying not to sound too sarcastic. It’s for the 2:40 show. I get my ticket and walk in. But the ticket taker [another kid] halts my progress.

“Dibodiubothalebitha,” he says.

“Wha?”

“Dibodiubothalebitha,” he repeats.

“Sir, I can’t understand you,” I tell him.

“Dibodiubothalebitha, the managethur,” he says this time. Basically, as the translation proceeds, motioning to the mall corridor, he’s telling me that I have to wait in line to get in. I tell him if I was told that at the ticket booth in the beginning I wouldn’t have bothered to buy a ticket. Figuring I’ll just ask for a refund, I go back to the outside guy [a kid] who sold me the ticket and he says, wait.

He leaves the booth and has a conference with the ticket taker. It’s agreed that I should be let in with the proviso to be a good boy and wait until the theater’s cleaned out. But here’s another thing they didn’t tell you. Instead of multiple theater showings, which is the norm, theater #5’s the only one in use for the Bond film and is still showing the movie. Which, all of a sudden, a rush of people are letting out. So you figure, okay, the movie’s over. Not exactly.

The 1:15 showing was prematurely terminated, and, judging by the bewildered looks on the patrons’ faces, no one’s exactly sure what’s happened or what’s going to be done about it. So I walk into the theater itself, and there’s a huge technical clusterfuck going on in the projection booth judging by the looks of it. I ask another one of the AMC employees [a kid] what gives.

“Oh, they were working on the thing last night and someone forgot to put the thing under the thing,” he tells me. “Now the thing’s not working.” Then another employee, this time an old guy, asks me if I got my pass.

“Pass? No, I’m here for the 2:40 show.”

“Then you have to wait outside until I’m finished cleaning,” he tells me, the weight of authority swelling his sense of self-importance. So I take a bench directly outside the theater and observe as another couple tries to walk in. Yet another theater employee [a kid] tells them they have to wait in line in the middle of the mall. Hearing this, I speak up and tell the inside guy, this kid, the outside guy told me I could wait inside. But the inside guy, apparently feeling his oats gives me a smartass look and comments, “Only those waiting in line will get in first.” He didn’t stick out his tongue, but the way he said it would have anticipated that school yard maneuver.

So I go to the outside guy and tell him what the inside guy had just said. And the outside guy says go back inside which I’m not about to do because I see how this game is being played. But then some fat broad [a kid] with a headset decides to intervene and tells the outside guy that I have to wait in line, way outside, like everyone else.

“Just give me a refund,” I tell the outside guy. On the way back through the mall I make a note to stop in Barnes & Noble to buy a copy of LA Magazine. That’s because Sasha Grey was on KSEX the night before and talked about how pissed off she was about the article on her. But I’ll bet Sasha hasn’t even tried buying a ticket to see 007.
 

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