28 June 2006

Superman: SUCKS

WARNING: Not suitable for Superman fans and audiences under the age of 18 and for folks against swearing.

I was invited to attend the Superman Returns preview in GSC Mid Valley just yesterday, and was obviously very, very, excited about it.

I made my plans, and although I'm really busier than you can imagine this week (a few very important documents to write, edit, compile and consolidate), I decided that 2 hours off work can be therapeutic. Boy, was I in for the surprise of my life. The whole experience basically SUCKS big time.

I have been told beforehand that I can't bring my handphone and recording devices, which made a lot of sense - piracy is after all a big problem in this region.

But what surprised me was that when I was at the entry, they kept repeating the announcement "For all patrons attending the Superman preview, please note that mobile phone and electronic devices are not allowed into the screening hall ..."

My first thought was that ... gosh ... digital wrist watches, pacemaker, PDAs, etc. ... how about those?

But I didn't realise that they won't allow me to bring my laptop in as well.


My laptop is staying with me. I'm coming straight from work, thus the laptop. There's a lot of information in the laptop - I can't risk losing it - so I'm not putting it in the car, I'm not depositing it with security as well. And you had to do the fucking preview on a weekday, which increases the chance of laptops ...

The lady we spoke to told me it'll be safe and she'll be out at the lobby area. SO WHAT ?? With all the handphones and laptops and whatever electronic devices out there, I can't take her word for it, can I? Who they FUCK is she anyways? The guardian angel of all electronic devices? The ultimate caretaker of deposited items? Can she guarantee if I lose my laptop or damage it that she'll pay up for the lost my company will incur?

And what does she think she's doing enforcing rules as she wishes??

The stupid sign says NO RECORDING DEVICES. The stupid ticket says NO RECORDING DEVICES including handphones, etc.

If I was informed earlier about no laptops being allowed, I might have made alternate arrangements or simply pass up the chance to watch the movie.

It doesn't say NO LAPTOPS anywhere except when I was there!!! And what am I going to do? Switch on the laptop and start recording the movie? I don't know if the resolution will be any good. I don't know if she actually thinks it's even fucking possible.

Look ASSHOLES ... it's more likely I'll download from bit torrent or eMule the movie. Or simply buy the DVD after a month.

And at least you can have the fucking courtesy to inform me in advance so I don't make it all the way there to not watch the movie. It's such as waste of time.

I hope they don't tell people next they can't wear clothes into the movie. I mean, they could do that, couldn't they, if they really wanted to? Or they could be telling people that they can't wear electronic wrist watches.

I didn't make any fuss out there because I was, after all, an invited guest. I didn't want to trouble my host any more, and was obviously disappointed for her that I can't attend. But the more I think about it, the more it was clear to me:

You know what? In your stupid, misguided attempt to fucking stamp out piracy, you've just encourage me to watch the movie on a pirated DVD. Why bother driving all the way to your stupid preview to be denied entry because you think I might be pirating away your stupid movie via my laptop (which has no recording devices, btw).


(But I'll still watch it. On pirated DVD, of course)


pelf said...

This is the first time I see Moz swear and curse in the blog.. Cool down, man.. Sh*t happens :))

Daniel Franklin Gomez said...

Don't be such a whiny baby dude. Malaysians are known throughout the world of being the masters of piracy, so they had to do what they had to do.

Neo said...

Looking forward to watch Superman Returns.

moz monster said...

pelf: Swear words were invented for good reason =) I'm fine now, thanks. But I'm really unhappy at the way the situation was handled.

daniel: In case you didn't realise it, I did not bring my mobile phone because I was told before hand it wasn't allowed. You see, I would have either not attend the preview, or made alternate arrangements if I was told BEFORE HAND.

What I'm unhappy with is that I was told only when entering that I can't bring a laptop. And there are no warnings even there. For all I know, the lady at the entrance could be making the rule up.

All they've done here is succeed at making me committ to either downloading the movie or buying a pirated copy of it.

neo: I'm sure the movie would be nice. Especially at home, in my room, and only costing RM10.

Din said...

So let me get this straight, you did not get to watch the movie at all?

Then why go all out and say Superman Sucks? Superman is the movie.

I think what you are trying to say is the organizer/cinema outlet sucks, right? In which case editing to the title of / picture in / some text in this blog entry would be needed.

Daniel Franklin Gomez said...

din I was about to say the same thing too. Spot on!

moz monster Our Malaysian reputation (piracy) precedes us... :-(

moz monster said...

din: You have a point there. But as far as I'm concerned, it's the entire movie experience that was tarnished by the action of the organizer / cinema in my case. I've been to previews where only recording devices are prohibited, and enough advance warning is provided.

I''ll stick to the title, picture and all the text in here. As far as I'm concerned, enjoying the setting, environment, experience is as important as the movie itself, more so because it was a preview.

moz monster said...

Daniel: So does it give the organizers the right to arbitarily deny entry to me? Maybe - it's a free screening after all. But without any notices?

Look, if told earlier that I can't bring any electronic devices into the screening hall, I'll happily keep even my wristwatch at the office or home.

It's just the way it's handled. I'm not asking you to understand how I feel, but if you were in my shoes, you'd see what it is I'm complaining about.

Raine said...

I think what they meant to say was "electronic RECORDING devices". But then again, you know how M'sian companies are with English. Don't get so worked up la.

eyeris said...

hmmm. First movie premiere you've ever attended I suppose? :)

It's actually very common for most of the big films to impose such measures during movie premieres that occur BEFORE the movie is released, yes, because of fear of piracy, especially in this region. and yes, they're VERY strict about it. sometimes even mp3 players were not allowed.

One thing good about this fear of piracy in MAlaysia is that at least we get the movies AT THE SAME TIME as the US, and sometimes even before, instead of a few months later, like we used to a 10-20 years back...

moz monster said...

raine: Maybe. I still don't see how my laptop would have helped pirated anything at all.

Maybe some doofus from the distribution company / organizer / Superman himself / someone can tell me.

eyeris: Nope, not first preview. It'll be my last one though. =)

I simply don't see how it beats a RM10 DVD-9 solution.

Inevitable said...

Woah... I the heart this post!!
My gf is dumping me today for suparman cos I have a futsal match tonight. I wonder what the management will say if I bring along my Teamgeist Soccer Ball...

KY said...

i guess the laptop can record voice? hehe

moz monster said...

inevitable: I don't know if they'll allow a ball into the screening hall - after all, it's no longer preview night already.

ky: And how would I pirate that?

"Psst ... bang ... you mau tak, ni voice recording from Superman Return, bang. Best. Quality Clear, bang. Saya jual 5 ringgit je, bang" ... ?

Che-Cheh said...

I'll probably be doing the same thing like you...go home with the laptop OR hide the laptop in my car boot(when no one is looking).

Daniel Franklin Gomez said...

moz monster Okay, maybe I would've flipped if it was me too. But, dude, who carries laptops to watch movies la? :-)

moz monster said...

che-cheh: I might risk it if it's my own laptop and I only have MP3s and Internet fluff in there, but that was a work laptop. =(

daniel: I do. It's Wednesday night, and I have some work I absolutely have to complete by Friday.

As a matter of fact, I was working till 5 this morning at home.

Anyways, it's all over now. I'm just going to quit the cinema for a while. A long while.

The MovieBuff said...

moz monster, i was there at the premiere last night and i had the same bloody experience as you did. i wrote about it in my blog as well :


By the way, I'm writing a letter of complain to 20th Century Fox. Their e-mail address is feedback@fox.com.my and chinyee.yap@fox.com

chloe said...

hahaha... this is funny. laptop not allowed?

"like yeah, my laptop has a tardy vga webcam... i can curi-curi record the entire length of movie and make money..."

moz monster said...

moviebuff: No kidding !! I saw another person with a laptop bag yesterday ... and I did think ... "I'm not alone".

Anyways, what else to be said that hasn't been said? They were probably afraid I would turn on my laptop and start working in the cinema ...

chloe: yeah ... and it's like as if I couldn't just download it on the Net. Well, I learnt my little lesson - there's no such thing as free lunch. Which is why I probably won't go for another free screening of any sort ... really.

Infectioner said...

Moz scary. Infectioner scared.

The MovieBuff said...

The issue is not what can or cannot be carried in....the issue is how the situation is being handled. The marketing manager which I spoke to was bloody rude and unsympathetic. It's as if we owe her tons to get invited to the event. She keep repeating 'It's ok, it's ok'. What does she bloody mean by that ? Or course, it's ok for her....but what about us. The least they could do is to open up our laptops, make sure there's no recording device and let us in.

moz monster said...

infectioner: Moz offers hug. Infectioner want? =)

moviebuff: I just think they should make it absolutely clear what we can and can't bring in the invite. It's not that hard to list it all, is it?

And yeah, the lady is VERY, VERY, VERY, VERY, ultra rude, which didn't help. I'm sure she's already watched the movie a billion and six times. But think about people like me ... I took time off from my work to watch the movie, I drove all the way to Mid Valley, I pay the parking, I had McDonald's which I normally don't do ... and then she's like ... "Hey, I don't give a fuck if you can't watch. And btw, I make the rules ...". I hate that.

quiscalis said...

Aiyoh laptops/PDAs/MP3s/PCs/etc etc all fall under 'Recording Devices' lar.... Any device that can record mah.... They were not wrong to deny you entry.

Most people(including you) think a handphone without camera means considered not a recording device...wrong. Remember recording means both audio or visual. JUst use any ancient handphone and make a call during the show, the person receiving your call can record the entire movie's audio(sound). WHich means can use for piracy purpose.

Laptop of course has recording capabilities so is a recording device. And morever with huge hardisk capacity to record multiple movies makes it even more dangerous. How can they test it when you can always hide the program somewhere and one can always plug in attachments later. Morever with wifi available almost everywhere, one can record and transmit out in a jiffy. Think about their concerns....
In the first place there are 2,000 people rushing for the show and you are making noise for trying to go in with a recording device which is clearly stated as prohibited??

So please don't feel sore about it. Looks to me you reacted like a guy bringing a toy M16 gun into a bank and arguing with the guard that how stupid can he be not to see that it is made in china and cannot shoot real bullets and that you just bought it for your son's birthday. WHo cares what's your reason, you are creating high level suspicion and they cannot take the risk so have no choice but to deny you entry.

Lighten up...cheers

moz monster said...

quiscalis: Obviously u don't have a clue about how many guards patrol the aisles during these previews. They would probably have caught you dropping popcorns on the floor.

Anyways, thanks for your 2 cents worth of thought.

You probaby forgot that to do anything with my laptop, I'd have to turn it on, in a dark room, with hundreds of people around me. I still can't see how I would have done it.

Oh, nevermind.

moz monster said...

quiscalis: Oh, and btw, I still don't get it about audio recording ... so what commercial value would that have ... see my earlier response to ky ...

I guess this is simply a case of taking draconian measures ... better sorry than safe.

And btw, it's ok to deny me entry. But was it ok to be rude? The lady from the event management / marketing company ... well ... if she ever comes to my company for business ... I'll give her the same treatment she dished out to us.

FUCK previews. FUCK 20th Century Fox. FUCK HBO. FUCK GSC Mid Valley. FUCK the marketing company.

quiscalis said...

Doesn't matter how many guards they have. That's their 2nd line of defence. 1st line is to collect all recording devices. US companies always follow US methods lar...

After the 911 incident, Air Marshalls were put on all planes(2nd defence line), but at the boarding gate they will first remove all identifiable risky devices from all passengers boarding(1st defence line). You cannot argue to ask them to allow you to bring your rambo knife with you since there are air marshalls on board and you cannot imagine how you can even attempt to stab someone...police are there but people will still commit crimes if they have the resource/tools.

And oh...commercial value for the audio recording?? How do you think pirates translate and subtitle dvds? Buy the script from the film maker?

and sometimes when there are audio disruptions in the copy they have, then they need replacement soundbites.

I have attended quite a few previews and I don't even bother to bring ANYTHING electronic at all. And I don't trust leaving my hp there. Not so much that it will be stolen while in storage but if you lose your retrieval slip and someone finds it...koyak lar..

It's stated clearly in all their invitations about devices and there's also a line that they still have the final right of refusal without having to state any reason at all. I believe that is probably based on suspicion.

It's unfortunate that you had to go thru such a situation and maybe they shouldn't have been so rude but I must say I have also personally witnessed guys screaming profanities at the staffs and creating a ruckus when they are merely following procedures.

And why I know so much? Because I have drilled them on this before...hahahaha don't ask me why....

moz monster said...

quiscalis: Apparently, you have to win the conversation by all means.

Comparing post-9/11 security with cinema??? One is putting lifes at stake. The other one is Hollywood trying to secure maximum profitability. Can compare meh?

And why the double standard? Apply the same stringent security measures during the normal cinema run - and watch the attendance drops and Hollywood losing $$$. People put up with it because it's free, the previews.

And you know what - the biggest problems won't even be us. It'll be rogue distributors, people from within the movie distribution chain who leaks out copies or material and the Internet. Get to the root of your problems instead of being anal !!

Might as well tell me I might be subjected to cavitiy searches or nude squats - I might have been able to smuggle in recording devices !!! *slaps forehead*


You probably missed the point that it was the experience that I have a problem with. Rude staff & no advanced warning. Get it ?? Go ask those idiots to go properly define recording device. And properly define electronics. Nothing is stopping them from preventing someone with a pacemaker into a preview. Or a digital Casio watch. Or a pocket calculator. Or a travel alarm. Or a pocket dictionary. Name the prohibited items, and tell people in advance. Don't make me travel all the way to the cinema on a weekday to be turned away by staff member who look like their pet dog just passed away.

Just because the staff member had previous unpleasant experience with other attendies shouldn't affect how they handle my situation if they are professionals in the true sense.

And I respect their right to refusal - which is why I left the cinema to write this piece. I just disagree with their entire handling. Don't nobody tell me I can't carry a laptop from work into a cinema without telling me before hand that I can't carry it.

You probably missed the point where I actually left my handphone somewhere else because I was told earlier.

I just don't care anymore. Nothing can be said to make the situation better. And nothing will stop me from boycotting previews.

I make enough $$$ - I can watch it proper (but not within the first 6 months). Heck, if I wanna attend a preview, I'll fly to Bangkok for it - I brought in my laptop from work for the Star Wars preview there. Heck, I was with my handphone as well.

And since it takes sooooOOOOooooOOOo much time and effort from the pirates to make a pirated copy for my enjoyment, I intend to buy from them. Sure beats the killjoy that people like 20th Century Fox and event organizers have become ...

If I don't know better, I'd say you have links to the entertainment industry ...

Anonymous said...

BOY!!!!! You are so GAY!...Only gay men would be this. Being ANAL. If you claim you make a lot of MONEY... don even bother joining contests to win premier tickets to watch a movie!

Just becoz you are denied an entry to the hall for being ignorant in the first place and all you can do now is blame the entire world including superman...you are such a sour grape! GROW UP man! I think even if you do earn a lot of money...still you cant afford the royalty rights of the movie. Being a cheapskate yourself and ignoring the rules in the invite putting the blame on the organisers or distributors certainly make you look more KIASU than anyone else! Just becoz of your own ignorance...you started cursing and swearing at the person in charge. How childish can this be???? GOSH! you should be ashame of yourself dude! You are lucky that they did not ask the security to just grab you by the collar and throw you out of the premise for wht you have done! AND.... for being a so called smart and rich person... there is something call ABUSIVE VERBAL HARASSMENT....but i guess being a person with a mentality like you would not understand wht that means...

Lastly... you don even have to worry abt attending another premier...for wht had happened that nite....you would be banned for life now for premiers. Well...thats the price to pay for stupidity and ignorance!

moz monster said...

Sheesh ... didn't realised I was being pissed until today.

You = GAY. Me = Straight.
You = Coward. Me = Not anonymous. Be a man ... er .... be a straight man. If you wanna criticise me, at least be man enough to put a name to it.

I was asked to be at the premier, and was only told phones were banned. And so, I didn't bring a phone. If they told me only bald men were allowed, I might have shaved my hair off too, anonymous ... whoever you are.

I didn't make a scene at the cinema, but no one can stop me from making a scene at my own blog.

Anyways, any person who reads my blogs, then reads your comments would generally see the reason why you're commenting anonymously - you're just criticising for the sake of it. You don't even put your points across logically - you infer I was smart and rich ... you said that I verbally abused the people at the cinema, you thought I won the tickets to the premier.

Dude / Dudette ... come see me sometime. I'll write you a cheque to take some English lessons. You poor thing, you'll need it.