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Most Fun Audience Reactions

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St. Gloede
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Most Fun Audience Reactions

#1

Post by St. Gloede »

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Do you have any standout memories of great or unexpected audience reactions, be it in the cinema or at home?

*This topic is partially spurred on by the recent discussion between Wright and QT audience experiences on the Empire Podcast: https://planetradio.co.uk/podcasts/the- ... n/2039974/
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Pretentious Hipster
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#2

Post by Pretentious Hipster »

Spring Breakers opening night in a completely packed theatre. None of them knew what they were getting into, thinking it was just a party film. I lost count with how many walkouts there was but there had to have been at least 20. When the credits came on, all you can hear is everyone doing nervous/confused laughter, or were just in complete shock.
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#3

Post by St. Gloede »

Mine would have to be seeing Psycho in my school auditorium during my first or second year of studying Media and Communication (equivalent to College in the US) - this is such a long time ago now - but it is still quite vivid in my mind.

It was quite a packed screening, largely as it was mandatory. I would guess closer to 100 students around 16-17 of age.

I had seen the film already, but I have no idea how many of the others had - and this turned quite interesting as - shockingly - some people clearly did not even expect the shower scene.

The gasps on that scene alone - given just how replicated and homaged it was - really took me by surprise - but: this is of course not the films only "twist" - and while seeing the rest of the audience (many of which I knew never saw anything made before the 90s) be involved was a lot of fun - the greatest / most fun moment for me was the very ending.

You know:
Spoiler
Norman Bates having a two-way conversation, both as "himself" and his "mother".
You could just feel - and HEAR - people squirm. Someone literally blurted out something akin to "he's *beep* sick", it was like a wave through the audience. I have genuinely never seen/experienced anything like it since.
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#4

Post by Teproc »

I don't know if I'd call it "fun", but certainly my most memorable audience reaction was seeing Ai no kôrida / In the Realm of the Senses on a Thursday night, with about 7 to 8 people in the theater, and the person on the same row as me (about 7 or 8 seats away) very obviously masturbating to it. I didn't quite see it, but you know.

One that comes to mind with regards to people not being ready for something would be a screening of Night of the Living Dead on Halloween night where, about five seconds in, my neighbors asked me if the whole film would be in black and white.

Seeing For Sama in a small Parisian theater is the only time I distinctly felt the whole room holding their breath, in a scence you'll probably remember if you've seen it.
Spoiler
It involves a baby.
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#5

Post by mightysparks »

Haven’t really had any. Some films at FrightFest have been nice because the audience laughs and claps and there’s a nice vibe in the room. The only funny thing that ever happened was when I saw The VVitch and it ended and some guy just went ‘aw get fucked’ in the most Aussie accent.
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#6

Post by beasterne »

My favorite audience reaction is seeing The Conjuring in a packed theater on my college campus. Everyone was there to have a good time and during some of the scary parts of the movie the audience was just flat out screaming. It made the movie feel like an event, like a rock concert or a theme park ride and definitely enhanced the experience for me. I wasn't able to appreciate the craft of the movie so much but it made everything a whole lot of fun.

Also an honorable mention to going to see Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince in a midnight showing, and right as the movie starts somebody shouted
Spoiler
"Snape kills Dumbledore!"
and everyone booed him tehe
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#7

Post by outdoorcats »

1. Black Panther.

...
...
...


2. Casablanca (lots of young people surprised by how much they liked it)
3. Inland Empire (it was the only screening in the area back when it came out, so the house was packed with David Lynch superfans)
3. Django Unchained
4. Dredd 3D
5. The Woman in Black (Daniel Radcliffe fans actually screaming in pure terror)
6. Get Out (just a hilarious audience; and proof that with the right film, a chatty audience isn't ALWAYS bad)

Honorable mention to pretty much any Marvel movie in a big theater, particularly post-Avengers. Even the pretty bad ones, like Iron Man 3, were buoyed by how enthusiastic the audience was.




WORST audience reactions:

1. Robinson in Ruins at the NYFF (mass walkouts are common at the NYFF, but at one point someone suddenly screamed "CAN SOMEONE TELL ME WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON??" and then argued loudly with people who tried to shush him)
2. Insidious (people just wouldn't stop talking, just ignoring the movie and talking about random ish)
+
*insert any movie I was foolish enough to see on a Friday afternoon, with teens talking loudly over the movie*

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#8

Post by blocho »

Movie theaters in NYC can get pretty rowdy when they're crowded, especially on opening night, especially the farther uptown you go. This was more true back in the 90s and early 2000s -- some of the energy has gone out of theaters when everyone is at home streaming.

Any Given Sunday with a totally packed house on 84th street was a memorable one -- multiple people screaming at characters. Hulk on 42nd street was also memorable because of two guys behind me who kept up an ongoing patter about their amorous feelings regarding Jennifer Connelly.

But my favorite was probably Zero Dark Thirty on 68th Street. We get to the climax of the movie as the commandos storm the Bin Laden compound. A sailor walks through darkened rooms as the tension builds, whispering, "Osama ... Osama." And then someone in the audience shouts out, "Over here!" Brought the house down.

This is also where I should confess that I once had a very special moviegoing tradition during my college years. Some friends and I would go to theaters with Forties in a backpack and proceed to get semi-drunk (I'm not sure if Forties exist in other countries -- they're forty-ounce bottles of malt liquor, perhaps the most cost-effective method of inebriation and thus very appealing to college students). Comedies were always the safe choice. Anchorman was a very successful outing. We called it the Movies and Forties Club. Some time later, the MaFC transformed into the Shitshow Friday Club, but that's another story for another time.
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#9

Post by OldAle1 »

Back in the eighties, forties were .69-.99 at the liquor store nearest to where I lived in high school (and now). I keep meaning to check the prices they are now - never was into them myself, I first drank beer on a school trip to Germany and completely bypassed any phase of drinking the cheapest stuff. I think the only low-end brand I ever drank with any regularity was Rolling Rock.

I think cheap vodka might be at about the same level of dollars-per-ounce-of-alcohol - my brother, a more price-conscious (and heavier) drinker than I had it figured out once.
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#10

Post by Lilarcor »

A moment that I remember quite fondly was watching the Danish western Manden uden fremtid (1916) at the 2017 Pordenone Silent Film Festival. For all films shown there there are English subtitles for the (in this case) Danish intertitles so that the non-Danish audience can follow what is going on. There is always also at least a pianist doing improv music for each screening, as was the case for this screening.

Unfortunately, as the film started playing, the subtitles didn't show up! Whispers in the audience grew louder, and people including the pianist seemed a bit unsure what to do. Should they stop the screening? But then a Danish guy came to the rescue! He had a solution. What ensued what that this Danish guy shouted out his live English translations whenever intertitles in Danish showed up, and like a perfect improv duo the pianist waited for the Danish guy to be done shouting out his translation to add his little musical reaction to what was going on. A very fun time in the theatre.
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#11

Post by sebby »

Shit I honestly can't remember a single one, good or bad. I tend not to go to packed shows so maybe that's part of it. I do always get a little second-hand embarassed when people clap at the end of a movie. It's not a fucking play, bozos.
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#12

Post by blocho »

sebby wrote: February 20th, 2021, 4:49 am I do always get a little second-hand embarrassed when people clap at the end of a movie. It's not a fucking play, bozos.
That's amusing. It makes me think of those few times when I've seen people clap after a plane lands (the pilots can't hear you, and landing the plane just means fulfilling the minimum of expectations). I've never experienced people clapping at the end of a movie, except for those screenings at festivals when the filmmakers are present. I do remember once seeing people boo the filmmakers at a festival. It was at the New York Film Festival (which I have found consistently disappointing). I don't know if they still do this, but 10 or 15 years ago, a short movie would usually precede each feature. This particular short lasted about 15 minutes and was about two friends on a road trip. Nothing much happens other than driving, stopping at gas stations, smoking cigarettes, and sleeping in tents. Then, at the end, they give each other hand jobs one night in a tent. The credits end, a spotlight goes up on the two directors, which was the usual practice, and some boos cascaded down. I didn't like the movie either, but I thought the booing was extremely rude and probably homophobic.

Actually, I do remember people clapping once at a movie. It was during a screening of Guess Who's Coming to Dinner during a university class I was a TA for. I was TA for that class twice, and both times the students loved the movie. I remember one time they clapped after it was over. I walked into class the next day and said something like: That was some accommodationist bullshit. OK, I didn't actually say that. I rarely expressed strong opinions as a teacher because I wanted my students to have the space to develop their own opinions. But when they were unanimous in their appreciation of the movie, I gently suggested some problems I had with it.
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#13

Post by kongs_speech »

In 2018, I went to a screening of The Room and dragged my mom along. Mom had a nice time despite not really "getting" it, but I had an absolute blast. People threw spoons and yelled "Hi Denny!" every time Denny appeared on screen.

When I saw Star Trek on release day in 2009, a black gentleman sitting behind me yelled "holy shit, it's Tyler Perry!" when the actor appeared on screen. I still chuckle when I think about it. I've been that happy to see favorite actors turn up unexpectedly, so I respect the enthusiasm.
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#14

Post by 3eyes »

Staircase (1969) - a rather dreary film with Richard Burton and Rex Harrison as an aging gay couple, which I saw in Norway. Audience consisted mainly of little old ladies who just loved Rex Harrison in My Fair Lady.
:run: STILL the Gaffer!
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