I went to see "Hellboy II" at the AMC Boston Common the other night. The crowds. The chaos. The nacho troughs. People, it's just monkeys in a rocket ship. And they're not even real! Fine, so nobody there at 9:30 p.m. cared about "Space Chimps." They wanted to watch "The Dark Knight," and I've never really seen the Common so under siege -- for legal, moviegoing reasons, anyway. But to the credit of the thousands of people who helped sell out four shows on Friday night and at least one of the early-early Saturday morning shows: no one was dressed like Batman. (Sadly, no one was dressed like Bruce Wayne, either.)
The trouble came mostly at the level of maintenance. The management devised a queuing system that, for the most part, remained orderly. But apparently the average "Dark Knight" enthusiast is a slob, news that seemed to have taken the theater by surprise. My 10:30 "Hellboy II" didn't seat until 10:45. According to the inexplicably good-humored usher Angela (Angela, if I'm misremembering your name or anything we talked about, please correct me), house number 11 previously showed "The Dark Knight," and it took a while to clean. Of course, by the time we entered, the trailers were on, so who would have noticed? But standards matter, and the Common kept its admirably high. As the night wore on, the half-awake throngs seemed to keep their cool, too. (By the time we exited "Hellboy 2", the folks in line for the 1 a.m. show looked pretty miserable.)
Maybe they all knew that, from a moviegoing standpoint, things could have gone worse. Near Chicago, a blackout kept one Batman audience from seeing the last reel. As news papers and every other publication to report that story has already observed: a dark night, indeed.
About Movie Nation
ContributorsTy Burr is a film critic with The Boston Globe.
Mark Feeney is an arts writer for The Boston Globe.
Janice Page is movies editor for The Boston Globe.
Tom Russo is a regular correspondent for the Movies section and writes a weekly column on DVD releases.
Katie McLeod is Boston.com's features editor.
Rachel Raczka is a producer for Lifestyle and Arts & Entertainment at Boston.com.
Emily Wright is an Arts & Entertainment producer for Boston.com.
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