NW Goes to the Talkies: Changeling

We went to the movie show this afternoon — a packed house, too! — and sat and sat and sat and sat and sat and sat and sat and sat and sat through Changeling starring a big, red pair of smackers attached to Angelina Jolie. The audience really reacted to this film about a big, red pair of smackers that fight corruption in the L.A. Police Department. They (the audience) laughed, gasped, cheered, made not a whisper or wrapper crinkle of sound during quiet scenes, and, as the credits began to peep over the lower edge of the screen, actually applauded. A well-satisfied batch of movie fans, I dares to say, so I’ll just keep my own opinion of the flick to myself.

What I liked best, apart from director Eastwood’s managing to boil a 90 minute story down to two and a half hours, was the surprise appearance E.J. Callahan as a prison warden. E.J. Callahan, you may recall, played the guy on Friends — Al Zebooker — who was the only other client of Joey’s agent, Estelle, and whose act consisted of eating paper.

But let me tell you, folks, seeing any kind of movie out here in L.A. is a sensation after all the blurry, muffled showings back in the Midwest. For one thing, all the theaters I’ve been to so far have provided Coke Zero™. The popcorn has room to improve, true, but the presentations of the films are so clean and crisp you feel as though you’re sitting in the director’s private screening room. And the sound! Too loud, as always, but so clear every word, even when spoken by John Malkovich, was intelligible. Back in the Old Country you would have thought the sound systems were provided by Jack in the Box™.

Los Angelenos take their movies seriously.

Either that or the projectionists live in mortal fear of the cast, crew, director or producers of the movies banging on their door demanding that their livelihoods not be destroyed by the ineptitude that seems to prevail in movie houses in every other city.

Then there was the mural in the theater lobby.

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