Saturday, July 14, 2012
Unlucky for summer movies?
You know how most Fridays during the summer, you've got a couple different new releases to choose from? Maybe not all in genres that speak to your demographic, but a couple significant new movies nonetheless?
Yeah, not this Friday the 13th.
Perhaps it's just the imposing, tectonic (if you will) box office muscle of Ice Age: Continental Drift, but that kiddie film is the only prominent new release opening this weekend.
Of course, some of that has to do with a shift in our definition of the term "prominent." Once upon a time, a new movie from Robert De Niro would be an occasion to stop and take notice. One hardly blames Mr. De Niro for this shift -- the man is, after all, a month from 69 years old -- but his new film Red Lights is hardly creating a ripple in the buzz machine (to mix metaphors).
Or perhaps it's just that no movie wants its second weekend to be utterly obliterated by the opening of The Dark Knight rises next Friday.
Anyway, not much dismissive or snarky to say about the umpteenth Ice Age movie, except that I still remember going to the first one and really enjoying it ... and then, by the second, already realizing that the series was headed down a perilous path toward lesser quality, and never subjecting myself to it.
Actually, there's one other reason I remember going to Ice Age, and this is as good a time to tell you about it as any. I was going to see it with a couple friends -- these were back in the innocent days when I still went to the movies with three or four other guys -- and a humorous exchange at the ticket counter became the stuff of legend in our group.
My friend Dan had been following the normal procedure of stating his preferred movie and showtime to the ticket seller. Except instead of "Ice Age, 3:40," he came out with "Ice 40?"
Immediately hearing his mistake, he laughed at himself and shook his head, either actually or metaphorically. "Ice 40 ..." he murmured with a big grin on his face.
Then, returning to the ticket seller with total earnestness, and no intention whatsoever of making the joke, he repeated the error: "Ice 40?"
If they continue to make Ice Age movies, I suppose Ice 40 would be due sometime in the 2060s.