Among Lions, Bulls and Bears the Mouse is Clever

After a harrowing week of continuously depressing news coming out of Wall Street, we really needed the mental escape of a movie this week-end. Going to the movies is an exciting prospect in our home, and adding to this is the perception that since frivolous summer movies are no longer monopolizing the local cinema, fall is the harbinger of the “serious” movie season. Unfortunately, our expectation of watching a good movie was replaced by disappointment after viewing the wretched material Hollywood is cranking out lately.

My family split up at the multiplex to accommodate the age differences in our group. The 13 year old girls endured The House Bunny (PG-13), while the older set cringed during Burn After Reading (R).

Not sure of the reason for the PG-13 rating for the movie, we prepared the girls for some raunchy and explicit sexual innuendos Bunny was sure to include and sent them off. (Liz Perle offers her view of the vague PG-13 rating in the Huffington Post).

We, on the other hand, expected to be entertained by Burn based on the tantalizing trailers with Brad Pitt and George Clooney we caught on TV. Needless to say, we walked out of the movie feeling burned ourselves.

Picture of Flames - Free Pictures -

Paying $10.50 per ticket (the average family of four has to shell out $42 for a night at the movies–no pop corn included!), for what is sure to become another luxury outing for families, is less justified when you don't know exactly what point of the movie is worth discussing over dinner after wards. 

“If there's a knock on Burn After Reading, it's that it's not really about anything …” wrote Alex Markerson of E! in his review of the movie.

The lower box office numbers are also a sign of what the movie industry will probably face in the coming months of increased economic belt-tightening. Frivolity and fun will not be enough to pull in movie-goers like us; the messages delivered in our beloved movies need to be louder and clearer to make it worth the expense, and families with less disposable income to throw Hollywood's way will most likely choose to spend their week-end in front of Pay-Per-View.

Maybe Hollywood should consider something similar to what Disney is doing to attract more visitors … offering a free ticket to the park on your birthday.

Among lions, bulls and bears, that Mouse is so clever!

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