If You See Something Say Something

Doctor Zhivago - (1963) Directed by David Lean

Starring Omar Sharif, Julie Christie, Geraldine Chaplin

Rod Steiger

I saw Doctor Zhivago today. On a big screen, digitally restored and for the first time, viewed at the Tribeca Film Festival. Should I talk about it? Tell you about how great the story was, or spin sentence after sentence about David Lean and all the beautiful shots he gives you. Omar Sharif or Julie Christie? Better yet, Tom Courtenay and Rod Steiger?

I'm not going to talk about it. "Please watch Doctor Zhivago if you get the chance", is all I'll say.

I, instead, am going to tell you about the episode I witnessed today just before entering the Clearview Cinema. As I cued along with others, an older gentleman spoke to me and others about films, music, history, many subjects, each in which he held some sort of worthy insight to share. He wasn't really bothering anyone. He made silly jokes and teased some of the Cinema staff. Whenever one of these ushers in bright yellow windbreaker TFF jackets and sunglasses would approach he'd ask if they were bringing him his ticket. It was a harmless joke and I couldn't imagine that it got to any of their nerves. As the line grew, I'd say about after maybe a good 15 people cued, the older man's younger wife showed up. He, by the way, was the first person on line; and when she showed up, everyone noticed. She was cool too, both really nice, friendly people. He told me about an film essay he has been working on for 2 weeks now, he told me about Hedy Lamarr and how she pretty much invented the technology responsible for the cellphone and internet with any due credit. Seriously. If you heard the story yourself it would not sound as crazy as it does when I write it.

Oh, I think I smell a rat!

It appeared that someone on line did not agree with his wife showing up late and taking a spot in the front. "It wasn't fair." Anonymously, word was slipped into one of the usher's ears and they approached the older man. "Its been brought to our attention that in all fairness, she (his wife) should go to the back of the line since its ticket per body, first come - first serve." Paraphrase, whatever...They split up the old man and his younger wife, the first 10 people are escorted to the ticket vendor, I'm glad to be moving as I had been shaking from a chill that echoed through me. He buys his ticket then explains his case to the vendor. I smile inside and think to myself he's a slick bastard, smooth operator because he had complied without much of complaint when the ushers linearly divorced him from his lady. He knew who to talk to. The vendor was ready to sell him the ticket or at least have one of the managers hear his story. I paid my tickets and then three people after me handed the vendor their ticket vouchers. The three people behind me were together and they were speaking with the old man earlier, everything seemed cool. But as we all headed towards the Cinemas entrance we passed on of the ushers who spoke with the old man earlier. One of the three people behind says to the usher, "hey, the old man is trying to game the box office." To this, the usher says, "good call," as he directs his energy on heading towards the box office where the old man probably was about to get his wife a ticket.

You ratted me out!

What business is it of yours if he gets his wife a ticket? Really, you ratted out another person, for what? What did it get you, doing "right", you got your ticket, what was the point in interfering? I don't get it.

1 comment:

Adam said...

The "Whistle blower" culture pervades every instance of our lives and to what end? Shit man, how refreshing it would be if they were in deep thought about something remotely relevant(?) or actually engaging someone and not paying any attention whatsoever to the silly matter at hand. Thanks--If I see something, I'll think something for sure.