Monday, September 7, 2015

A very Regal fail, and walkers say the darnedest things

And by "walkers," I don't mean zombies. My life is fortunately zombie-free at the moment. No, I just mean one who can walk. It is a little less ominous than "TABs," or "Temporarily Abled Bodied," which I agree with my older sister, sounds a little threatening.

I praised Regal Cinemas a few years back for being at the forefront of assistive technology that brought closed captioning to movie theaters. They are still the only theater chain I've been to that uses  captioning glasses, which are so much better than the pane of glass other theaters use. For a hard-of-hearing person in a wheelchair the panes never line up right, so you are constantly raising and lowering your eyes to follow the action on the screen or the captions.

But with the glasses -- you see captions and the action; they're awesome ... when they work. But the the last few movies at Regal Ballston, they have been less than great. When I saw Ted 2 (yes, I laughed and yes, I am embarrassed), the captioning skipped lines regularly.

It was as if the moviemakers were trying to save a few bucks by not having the captioners caption everything. Or maybe the captioners can't rewind the movies, so if they miss something, they just skip it. Or something.

Saturday, though, was a fiasco.

The captions regularly skipped lines in Ant-Man, but I was OK until the finale, when the captioning just died completely. I followed the last 15 minutes, but any quiet talk was lost on me.

After the movie, I returned the glasses. The woman asked how the movie was, and I told her the glasses died on me right as the finale was starting.  Oh, I wish you'd brought them back to me, she said.

This was the darnedest thing.

It would have meant leaving the theater, which would have meant wrestling open a door since they aren't automatic, riding an elevator to the main floor of the theater, explaining the situation, waiting for them to go get another pair of glasses, riding the elevator again, another wrestling match with the door, then retaking my seat. I figure I'd have made it back in time to see the post-credit scene, which incidentally really needed captions.

I didn't say all this, and she again asked, well, how was the movie. I again pointed out that the captions failed during the finale. Her response: A refund? A free ticket? No. "I'm sorry."


Anonymous said...

I didn't know that the glasses didn't work the way they should at. Maybe that is why you didn't love the movie :-)
One thing we realize that you always need to double check when you get the glasses that they are fully charged. And good thing that I wasn't with you, you never would've left that theater without a refund plus a free ticket to the next movie and a request to speak to the manager. Kick ass and take names! Especially for the price of those movies.

Matt Trott said...

I doubt glasses would improve Ted.

Anonymous said...


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