Saturday, July 04, 2009

Money talks

C. and I wanted to take our kiddos to see the new Transformers movie. C.'s daughter is 7, and my son is 5. I know, I know... some of you out there will say that the movie is completely inappropriate for a couple of kids so young, and while for some kids it might indeed be so, for ours it isn't. We know our own kids and what they like and what scares them and what doesn't. And they wanted to see Transformers, so one way or another we were going to take them to see the movie.

I mentioned this to another friend of mine, who related a story that a friend of hers tried to take her kid to see Transformers at Multiplaza and they insisted on her bringing the kid's birth certificate to show proof of age.

See, here's the thing: There are two movie ratings in Costa Rica. A and B. A is definitely all-ages, what would be considered G-rated movies in the U.S. I cannot tell you, however, what, exactly, B means. I haven't been able to find out on any website or movie site, whether it's equivalent to an R rating or a PG-13 or PG or what. Personally, I think the B rating is used so that movie theaters (and especially their $2-an-hour ticket sellers) can decide on a whimsy whether or not a movie is appropriate for your kid. Thank you very much, but I think I can decide that for myself.

So we figured if a friend of a friend couldn't get her 12-year-old in to see Transformers without producing proof of age, the only option we had was to go out to the VIP theater at Cinepolis (not that I mind, so far it's my favorite movie theater ever. Anywhere. Period.). Because, you see, as in the rest of Latin America, if you throw more money at something you are less likely to be hassled (witness the prevalence of bribery everywhere in Costa Rica). A ticket to the VIP theater costs 3,500 or the equivalent of about $6 U.S. (That's considered expensive here, by the way!) For your 3,500 you get big, reclining leather seats, waitservice, the ability to buy cocktails with your popcorn, and only maybe 100 seats in the whole theater (there are only 8-10 seats per row, I believe). Not bad, if you ask me. A regular movie costs about half that. Also, we had the Costa Rican national trait of non-confrontation working for us (after all these years, I have finally gotten esposo on board to using that to our advantage whenever possible). If you don't ask, they have to come out and actually tell you, "No, you can't do that," and that just isn't likely to happen.

So. Yesterday we went over to the VIP theater and bought the tickets. When esposo was buying the tickets, he made sure not to mention the fact that two of them were for kids (all tickets cost the same anyway), even though they were standing right there next to us. Of course, the ticket seller didn't say a thing, nor did the ticket taker as we all five strolled into the theater to take our seats. Success!

As for the movie itself? Not much to say, really. Loud, long, and not something I'll be watching again, but the kids had fun and seemed to enjoy it. At least I got to look at Josh Duhamel for the better part of a couple of hours while having popcorn and beer for dinner. Esposo is so good at picking out characters' voices; I just checked and he correctly figured out Tom Kenny (voice of Spongebob) was also the voice of the twins. Not bad!

As a post script, generally speaking, kids' movies are usually shown overdubbed here, but Cinepolis does have Ice Age 3 and Night at the Museum in subtitles. Just in case you have any use for that information. ;-)

1 comment:

  1. I'm almost certain the ratings have to do with sex, because I know violence doesn't seem to phase anyone. Sex and possibly use of the word "God" as part of any expletive. It's a Catholic country. It's okay to kill and maim in front of children, but you can't get naked or take the lord's name in vain, that would be wrong. @@