A Code For Movie Audiences

by Randy Murray on October 25, 2010

In order to insure a pleasant experience and to prevent potential and justifiable injury from angry spectators, please conform to this simple code.

  • No talking during the feature presentation.
  • Laughing, exclamations, and clapping is welcomed and encouraged when it’s appropriate. If you do not know when it is appropriate, stay home and watch TV.
  • Talking prior to the previews and the dimming of the lights is acceptable, but please keep the volume of your voice low.
  • Talking during previews should be limited to whispers. Other patrons are interested in the previews and view them as part of the entertainment.
  • Phones and electronic devices of all types must be silenced and screens darkened. If you must take or place a call, please leave the theater. Texting or any form of electronic communication should also take place outside of the theater.
  • If you must leave or enter a theater during the feature presentation, do so as silently and unobtrusively as possible.
  • Please do not kick the seat in front of you, shake it, or move it in any fashion. You may not be aware of your impact on other patrons, but they are aware of you.
  • Do not leave the theater until the credits have started. If you feel you have to beat the crowd by leaving in the last few minutes of the movie it is recommended that you leave a full two hours before the movie is over to completely avoid the rush.
  • Children who cannot conform to these codes should be swiftly removed from the theater by a parent or guardian.

If another patron asks you to observe any of these codes, especially if they ask you to be quiet during the movie, nod politely and immediately cease the offending behavior. Failure to comply is sufficient reason for a public thrashing.

Restaurant patrons, and passgers on planes, trains, and public transport would do well to follow this code, too.

The A Code For Movie Audiences by Randy Murray, unless otherwise expressly stated, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Robert Falck October 25, 2010 at 8:49 am

Well said and I couldn’t agree more! Far too often do we need to stand behavior in the movie theaters that just ruins the experience. If everyone could just understand these simple rules it would all be so much more pleasant for everyone involved.

I think I will print and hand out to other moviegoers, should I venture out to a movie theater again. For the time being, I shall remain in the shelter of my home and enjoy the move cinema instead. Last “real” movie theater visit burned me and I’m not in the mood to repeat the experience just yet.


2 Randy Murray October 25, 2010 at 8:54 am

I built my own movie theater a few years ago and we rarely venture out anymore. Every time I do I’m reminded about how completely, unthinkingly rude many people are.

I’d love to find a theater that enforced these rules, just like the old days, ushers and all. I’d gladly patronize it, even pay more, for the service.

Even without the idiots in the audience, a top notch home theater is hard to beat.


3 Robert Falck October 25, 2010 at 9:09 am

As soon as me and my wife buy a house, we are definitely building a proper home movie theater. Something we have been pining for a long time. The wonderful freedom of a nicely decorated place with the real cinema feeling, good quality seating, crisp and clear visuals and not exaggerated sound. Not to mention the snacks will be even more awesome.


4 Randy Murray October 25, 2010 at 2:25 pm

Having your own theater is luxury beyond belief. It’s marvelous to head down on a Friday night with my wife, pour a drink, get something from the candy counter, and completely relax in movie bliss.

You can build one with any budget. Here’s mine: http://cinemamurray.com


5 Ann Janzen October 25, 2010 at 4:23 pm

What a really neat theatre.. and quite beautiful!


6 Randy Murray October 25, 2010 at 8:43 pm

Thanks - I tried to pitch it as a money saving item, but my wife didn’t buy it. She did agree that it was my hobby and we’ve had thousands of hours of enjoyment, both for ourselves, the girls and their friends, and for entertaining. It’s been great fun.


7 Jonathan Elliot October 25, 2010 at 8:23 pm

Agreed, Randy. And while we’re at it, “You kids get off my lawn!”

These are human rights we’re talking about here. The right to watch advertisements followed by a movie in a stinky theatre with sticky floors in peace was established by the 93rd amendment.

Comments above on home theatres noted ;)


8 Randy Murray October 25, 2010 at 8:41 pm

Don’t get me started about the lawn!


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