Salisbury Press

Thursday, January 23, 2020

Respectfully Yours: Enjoy movie

Friday, August 17, 2018 by JACQUELYN YOUST Special to The Press in Focus

Dear Jacquelyn,

My wife and I were at the movies last weekend, and the couple behind us made loud noises unwrapping their candies and talking during the movie. Their voices were not loud whispers, but normal conversation voices and their crinkling of wrappers was irritating. We looked back at them several times but they did not stop. We got up and moved. Should we have told them to be quiet instead of moving?

Dear Reader,

Moving to another seat in the theater was the appropriate action. If glancing back at them did not work, then you did the right thing and changed seats. It’s irritating when someone’s breaking movie-theater etiquette, but you’re only adding to the overall disruption if you yell at them about it. The best way to deal with rude people is to avoid them. Verbal confrontations only escalate the situation and could end up becoming serious. Nothing irritates people more than listening to someone have a conversation while trying to watch a movie. It’s one thing to whisper to your friend, but having a conversation at full volume is rude. Another misstep is that some people think they are being polite switching over to texts. They don’t realize the screen is still illuminating an area of the theater and the vibrations get on people’s nerves. It’s disruptive and rude to everyone seating next to or behind you. This is a friendly reminder to please put the phone away. You’ll be free in about two hours. If it’s an emergency, politely excuse yourself to the lobby and check your phone. Talking to the movie screen is another thing people like to do. Newsflash: The characters on the screen can’t hear you. The problem is, everyone else in the movie theater can, and they don’t appreciate it. Snacks are part of the movie experience. It’s annoying that people are oblivious to the noise they are making. However, for the more well-mannered person, you understand the importance of courtesy and are mindful of the plastic around your snack. Many of us love going to the movies. So, bring along your best manners, use good movie-theater etiquette, and enjoy the show.

Respectfully Yours, Jacquelyn

Have a question? Email: Jacquelyn Youst is owner of the Pennsylvania Academy of Protocol, specializing in etiquette training. She is on the board of directors of the National Civility Foundation. All Rights Reserved © 2018 Jacquelyn Youst