Thursday, January 3, 2013

Today in Jaw-Droppery...

Pictured: As little fanfare as possible.
Hey, remember last summer when that guy walked into a midnight screening of The Dark Knight Rises dressed in full tactical gear, armed to the teeth with some of America's favorite guns and opened fire killing 12 and injuring 58 others? Well, the movie theater is reopening. Hurray...? I guess? I mean the community probably just wants to move on and of course Cinemark is going to do the classy thing and just reopen quietly and with as little fanfare as possible. Right?

Actually no, the opposite is what's happening. Cinemark has taken the opportunity to not only enhance security but also to upgrade the theater with floor-to ceiling XD screens. What the hell is XD? I don't know, I'm guessing it's like HD only more x-treme.
"XD: ultra-clear picture and sound so real, you'll swear the bullets are flying right at you!"
-Cinemark's marketing department,
shortly before clearing out their desks
We're sorry for your loss. Please enjoy
this complimentary small soda!
Can't get ickier, right? Wrong again. The company's CEO, Tim Warner, sent a letter to Aurora Mayor Steve Hogan to tell him about how the theater will now be better than ever (you know, fewer massacres), and will offer free movies for the community.  And they'll even be kicking off the reopening with a 'special evening of remembrance' for the victims, and "specially invited invitees" (i.e. survivors and families of the dead, and of course a +1). The night will include a free movie and grief counselors. Holy shit, I wish I was making this up.

Above: Pretty much the reaction
Cinemark can expect.
So it's not so much a respectful night of remembrance as it is a crass marketing ploy of remembrance destined to backfire spectacularly. The families are understandably livid, and you kind of have to wonder what's wrong with Tim Warner and the Cinemark PR staff that they don't see that they shouldn't really be involved. Look, no one could have predicted the shooting and it's not really the theater's fault, but do they really think that the victims and their families are going to turn to the local bijou for healing? I mean shit, what with Netflix and all people barely turn to them for movies anymore.

Fine, re-open, that's cool. But don't try to insert yourself into the victim's grieving process. Sure, the town would like the theater back, but I don't think anyone would have been all that upset if an angry mob came along and razed the place to the ground and then salted the earth so that nothing will grow again.
Or if the angry mob just tore it down and put in an outlet mall or something. 

No comments:

Post a Comment