Sunday, September 02, 2007

CIA’s Jason Bourne Has Arab Friends

Watching a movie in another country is always an interesting experience, especially if the English original is dubbed in one language, subtitled in another and you are left with no English. Happens occasionally in Asia. Then there is the different etiquette expected – trying breaking any of the rules about where to sit in Singapore and they want to stop the movie so they can sort out the seating. Even when there are only 15 of you in the theatre. In Amman this evening the theatre had a decidedly family theatre feel about it. It was small as far as theatres go but we were up against local pop movies and all the kids were filling what I expect were larger halls. The predominantly male audience crowded into a space with seating for maybe 200. The screen was distinctly warped, like one of those carnival mirrors that adds weight to your waist or stretches your head into a cone. If the size of the place was not enough to give a sense of being in a family theatre the constant chat among groups, which back home would have irritated me, seemed appropriate. Everyone seemed to know everyone else. Heck, even I ended up firm friends with a couple of Jordanians who are students in Texas and are currently home visiting family. People wandered in and out, phones were answered, messages checked, and when Jason wasn’t hurtling along in some frantic dash those conversations burbled along. And when Jason got on top of things at Waterloo station there was polite applause. But a clap and cheer each time he bested his CIA rogue minders. And a laugh of relief and theatre wide applause when the final scene with Nicki reveals all is not lost. Whatever your TLA (three letter acronym) everyone wants the good guy to win in the end. Even if he is CIA.


Dean said...

What a great experience.

I remember going to a movie in Thailand, where the entire audience stands for the national anthem. To honour the king.

Sort of takes you back to a time you were never born.

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