Scenes from a Showing
It is Sunday, January 18th at 11:45 am. Mom and four year old son are
on their way to ROTK (his third, her sixth viewing). The following
instances have not been altered or changed to protect the innocent.
Brynn (from backseat): “Mama, can I bring my swords into the movie?”
Mom: “Swords? Which swords?”
Brynn: “These ones (displays his toy swords from his 12 inch Ringwraith figure) – I have my morgul blade and my broadsword.”
Mom: (sighs, already knowing answer to next question) “Why did you bring those?”
Brynn and Mom (simultaneously) “To fight!”
Mom: “Honey, you can’t bring those in. The movie people don’t allow it
– and before you ask, because they can hurt someone. So leave them in
Brynn: “grumble, grumble, grumble” – then silence. Which is more worrisome.
We arrive at the theater – child is duly frisked by Mom to make sure
weapons are not present on his small person. So far, so good. We pass
without incident through the line, through concessions, a quick potty
stop, and into the theater. We sit WAY too close to the screen, but he
won’t be persuaded otherwise. He is quiet, well-behaved and attentive.
I’m growing nervous.
Just before the Rohirrim arrive at Pellenor Field, a little voice
whispers urgently “Mama, do you have any more straws? Mine doesn’t work
anymore.” Sure enough, he has chewed his straw to shreds. I sigh, but
we make the journey to the snack stand and get two long straws,
figuring he’ll drop one, so have one in reserve, right?
As Theoden makes his entrance, a small figure jumps out into the aisle
and raising both straws aloft, yells “Death! Death to all orcs! For
land and honor! And the red dawn!”
The roar of the battle does not drown out the diminutive Rider of Rohan who is determined to offer what aid he can.
The theater is full of hysterical adults who, fortunately, understand
having overzealous kids. I usher him back into his seat, but not before
he has slain several nasty orcsses who are killing the horsies. Never
mind the people, save the animals!
As we prepare to leave, a nice older couple stop by our seats to
comment on young one’s bravery in battle. “It was for Rohan,” he
answered cheerfully. “My mommy thinks Theoden is hot, even though he’s
old enough to be her daddy…” He would have continued on in that vein
except for the hand firmly clamped over his mouth.
The moral of the story is – never underestimate a kid with a vivid imagination.
And don’t let them sit on the aisle.