I recently came across this Oscar-nominated short from 1944, which lampoons that most odious breed of human: the movie pest. It’s a great idea to “take the movie pests out of the audience and put them on the screen.” Alas, the execution of that idea is wanting. The film just isn’t very funny.

So why am I posting about it? As the man says in Rubber: no reason.

I’ll say this, though: We’ve come a long way since the huddled masses began flocking to theaters at the turn of the century to escape their gloomy, overcrowded, inadequately ventilated, foul-smelling and tubercular tenement homes. Watching movies was a communal activity then, as it still was in 1944. It still can be, of course. But, happily, it need not be. Thanks to today’s technology, we no longer have to suffer the aggravation of commingling with movie-theater gadflies.

Why tolerate gluttonous slobs shoveling fistfuls of popcorn into their relentlessly churning jaws, or a freakishly tall pituitary case with a shock of unkempt hair atop his gargantuan head sitting directly in front of you, or a long-limbed, lead-footed seat-pusher using the back of your chair to do leg press exercises, or an insufferable little brat emitting a nonstop stream of shrill nonsensicalities like a machine specially designed to grate on anyone within earshot, or a gaggle of teenyboppers snapping their gum in cacophonic unison or any other godforsaken movie theater nuisance, when you can now watch movies in the comfort and security of your own home without hassle or distraction, on a home theater system comparable in visual/aural quality to any movie theater? My house is a pest-free zone.

One Response to “MOVIE PESTS (WILL JASON, 1944)”

  1. P.S. The film was co-written by one Parkyakarkus, also known as Harry Parke, whose given name was Harold Einstein – the father of Bob Einstein and Albert Brooks, whose given name was Albert Einstein.