May the 4th be with you - it's Star Wars Day.
According to Wikipedia, the first time someone used that particular phrase was back in 1979, in a London newspaper. To celebrate Margaret Thatcher taking office as Prime Minister, of all things. Who knows if that's really the first usage, of course, but it makes an interesting anecdote. And the timing makes sense, only two years after the original movie release.
This seemed like the most appropriate day to go see The Force Awakens again. I enjoyed it the first time, though not so much that I've felt the need to go search out another showing over the last few months. This felt like the most appropriate way to spend a couple of hours of May 4th, though.
The local cheap theater still has The Force Awakens playing for $5. I remember when cheap theaters were a lot less than that, but I guess inflation hits everybody. Unfortunately I also got a reminder of why the cheap theaters aren't always the best choice. Some guy came in late, made a bunch of noise, coughed up a storm, and was just generally annoying. After a few minutes he settled down, but then about halfway through the movie he started coughing again and then yelling at the screen. I asked him to be quieter so the rest of us could watch, but he was having none of it. Started going on about how the movie woke him up (which explains why he was quiet for a while) and he was on meds and so on. So, I went and got a theater employee from out in the hall, and just as we were coming back, he walked out...guess he knew what was coming. That sort of thing could happen at any public place, I suppose, but it's probably more likely at cheap movie theaters. On the upside, outside of that guy, everything else was fine...place was clean, seats comfortable, no problems with picture or sound.
The movie itself was exactly what I remembered from my first viewing: a rehash of just about everything from A New Hope, moved forward a generation. That's not always the case with second movie viewings. Sometimes you get a different perspective, or notice some new details that change the way you think about the overall experience. Not in this case. This film stuck so closely to the formula that I couldn't help but see the similarities as the overwhelming focus. I noticed a few details that I'd missed the first time, but certainly nothing to change my overall impression.
I'm still glad I saw The Force Awakens one more time in the theater, annoying random people aside. There's enough impressive effects to be worth a trip to see them a big screen. And of course, it's a great May 4th activity. May the 4th be with you!