Can you imagine a cinema with 45- minute-long queues? When you reach the top of the queue all films showing in the next two hours are sold out. Worst of all the only genre of film available to you is Superhero.
If you’re not a cinema-lover stop reading now as this will mean nothing to you. If you are, brace yourself. What I’m describing is not some dystopian nightmare but instead an experience I lived just last week.
Before I begin let me state that I love going to the cinema - WITH A PASSION. I come from a long-line of cinema fanatics. My father spent his entire youth in the cinema, my sister Martina can’t get enough of it and my cousin Sean, well, his cinema attendance was once legendary.
The thrill of disappearing into the darkness and losing myself in an unfamiliar world is one of the greatest joys. I’m open-minded about what I’ll go see. It’s usually a joint decision, but my partner and I favour thrillers and dramas. I like a decent romantic comedy and in return for Ahmed sitting through those with me, I happily accompany him to action films. I draw the line at horror or anything with gorey violence, but that’s just my personal preference. I can appreciate the appeal of those too.
To put it in context here’s some films I’ve recently enjoyed: The Favourite, Fighting with my Family, On Chesil Beach, Tully, First Man, Beautiful Boy.
Some I was really looking forward to but felt disappointed with: Mary Queen of Scots, The Aftermath.
And some I loved: Can you Ever Forgive Me, Bohemian Rhapsody and BlacKkKlansman
What’s struck me about the lines queuing last week to see Avengers Endgame is that it’s yet another in a long line of box office hits minus ‘real people’. My definition of ‘real people’ is characters who are HUMAN! You know the type - they can’t lift vehicles with one hand or leap between skyscrapers and they inhabit the earth?
If characters live in the future and wear coloured spandex – I don’t want to know anything about them. Obviously, coloured spandex as a fashion choice is fine if you live in the present. (See image above in case you don't believe me).
The night of my aborted cinema trip marked the start of a weekend where Avengers Endgame grossed $1.2 billion at the box office. Can you believe that? I can’t. I refuse to.
I wouldn’t mind if those flocking to see it were kids, but they weren’t. From my quick demographic appraisal, they were people like me. Adults. Grown-ups. I get there may be small pockets of the general population who love this stuff but when did EVERYBODY start to love it? Hand on heart, up to last week, I would have said I don’t know anybody who actually likes superhero films.
And before you tell me I should go see one, I promise you, I have. I recently sat through Captain Marvel which was as terrible as I feared it would be. The only thing that came close to saving it was Brie Larson. All the while I sat there thinking, this woman won an Oscar. She’s amazing, surely there’s something more befitting of her talent than this? I’m sure she didn’t complain about the hefty pay cheque but all I could imagine was Brie, sitting at home, finally bored with counting her money and thinking, Jeez, I wish I could find something better than this.
Maybe I have Brie totally wrong. Maybe she loves Superhero movies. Either way, Ahmed informs me the reason people flocked to see Avengers Endgame was because it’s the last in the series. After grossing $1.2 billion in a single-weekend, somehow, I find that hard to believe.