Thinking of catching “Straight Outta Compton” or “The Man from U.N.C.L.E.” at the local cineplex?
Be sure not to bring any weapons.
That seems to be the implication from the quiet posting of signs at Regal and Consolidated theaters in Hawaii.
One sign at Kahala Theatres last week read, “We reserve the right to inspect all bags and packages upon entering the theater.” A similar sign was posted at Ward Stadium 16.
Civil Beat’s calls to Regal and Consolidated were not returned, but one theater attendant said the signs went up just a few days ago.
A sign of the times at Kahala Theatres.
Chad Blair/Civil Beat
Meanwhile, a customer going to “Ricki and the Flash” at Dole Cannery last week said she was surprised by the search and asked if the attendants were looking for guns. An attendant replied that they are not supposed to say anything about guns.
Nationally, Time magazine reports that security at theaters is becoming a necessary reality. After all, “America’s 5,700 movie theaters remain one of the last major public gathering places without routine security.”
That is changing after attacks earlier this month in Tennessee, where a man with a history of mental illness entered a cinema wearing a surgical mask and toting a pellet gun and a hatchet during a showing of “Mad Max: Fury Road,” and last month in Louisiana, where a man with a history of erratic and violent behavior killed two people and injured nine others with a handgun before killing himself during a showing of “Trainwreck.”
NBC News reported that a movie theater chain has banned moviegoers from bringing in backpacks and packages. Showcase Cinemas operates theaters in Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island and Ohio.
In related news, the convicted gunman who killed 16 and left more than 80 wounded in Colorado in 2012 during a screening of the latest “Dark Knight” film has been sentenced to life in prison after a single juror balked at giving him the death penalty.
Last summer, one man fatally shot another in a Florida theater because he was annoyed that the man was texting.
Time reports that when moviegoers in Los Angeles showed up for the premiere of “Straight Outta Compton” this week, “they were greeted by a sight rarely seen in America’s cinemas: metal detectors.”
Movie theaters, like churches, remain largely unguarded for now, Time observes. They are also dark and dense places, and exits can be hard to find.
Theater owners are not thrilled to be giving customers less incentives to go to the movies, given the Internet options for films that are already cutting into their profits.
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