War of the Worlds 2005 – Disappointed for the Wrong Reasons

world of the worlds

War of the worlds is a classic story by H.G. Wells (mind you, it came out in 1898!) but how much difference that Steven Spielberg can make in 2005? That was the thought running through my mind when I saw the movie showing at my local theatre. Image source: Movieclips.com

After hearing about the movie and seeing that it got an “A” rating in The Star, me and my wife set aside our Sunday to see the movie. We arrived early and unexpectedly the crowd was thin – perhaps War of the Worlds was not everyone’s cup of tea, so we had the luxury of picking our seats. With 2 hours to spare, we made to Starbuck for our cappuccinos and my wife was asking about the movie, as it was my idea to see it in the first place.

When the time came, we promptly went into the cinema and what an opening it was!

Something that does not happen when we are watching a Tamil movie, my wife and I were literally on the edge of our seats, heart thumping and were inches away from shouting, “Come man, run faster! The thing is just behind you!” It’s true what they say – leave a classic story in the hands of a master and you will be surprised with the outcome. Spielberg is one such master.

Tom Cruise was excellent in his role. Image source: www.rogerebert.com

The momentum of the story at the start of the movie was rather slow – Tom Cruise coming back from work and forced to babysit his kids who hates him and don’t want to be there in the first place. Couple of lightnings later, their world turns upside down – war of the worlds have started.

One hour into the movie…. And guess what…the sound went off! There we were watching the silent movie for 5 minutes, keep thinking the sound will come back. Someone from the front shouted “Hoi, mana sound lah?” A couple of “lovebirds” at side were busy themselves and I guess that they probably were not aware that the movie had no sound!

We waited, looking at each other until one of the guys stood up (shame on me for not) and went out bringing back the cinema attendant. Couple of minutes later, the lights came back and the cinema attendant informed us that there is a technical problem and they are fixing it now.

Thinking that the problem will be fixed in 5 minutes, my wife and me were talking of the scenes and “predicting” on what is going to happen next. Just then I heard a loud “bouncer-like” statement “Excuse all”…we turned and saw the manager (all right I am guessing here – he was probably the newly joined staff that the management forced to face the angry movie goers).

He said that they were having a problem with the sound system and even though they tried, the  system was obviously beyond their level to repair and as such, they have no choice but to stop the movie. They will of course refund the money or we can opt for another movie later for the day.

My wife remarked that she knew that it was too good to be true of watching the movie in the most comfortable environment. We were disappointed…not at the movie…at the technical errors at the cinema.

It was too late for us to see other movie, so I opted for a refund. Besides, considering that they were having technical issue, no guarantee the next movie will be problem free. At least we saw the “opening” of the War of the Worlds for free and now convinced that this is a movie to watch in theatres. As I was leaving the counter, I overhead the manager telling his staff that the sound system has “fried” (no wonder the sound was so “dahsyat” (means superb) during the opening!)

Disappointed indeed!

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