The kids and I caught a 4:30 showing of The Wolf of Wall Street today at Leows 34th Street. A couple of HE people had said “see it with a paying audience and you’ll realize that this really is the new Scarface — people are mostly getting off on the insane manic humor, and very, very few are drawing any moralistic or metaphorical message whatsoever.” It was Jett’s second viewing, Dylan’s first. But right away there was trouble from a big black guy sitting a couple of seats to Dylan’s right. This dude wasn’t just talking all through the film — he was broadcasting his line-by-line, scene-by-scene commentary to the entire front section of the theatre.

When Dylan asked him why he was talking so much and where are his manners, the guy was indignant…”I’m enjoying myself!” The guy’s wife or girlfriend was trying to get him to chill also, but he was off on his own cloud. There was no reaching him, no guilt-tripping, no winning through persuasion or threat — he was (and probably still is at this very moment) a stone sociopath, a complete animal…gone.

We all know that African-American culture has always accepted talking during films, especially in New York. As manners have decreased and society has devolved in recent years incidents like today’s have probably increased. It has always seemed to me that theatre talkers have a certain under-educated je ne sais quoi with a vaguely alcoholic air. They never seem to be executive job material, I know that. I also know that the vast majority of New York theatre talkers I’ve run into in the past seem to be Swedish, Danish, Norweigan or Finnish. Have others noticed this?

After Dylan’s first verbal altercation I looked over and glared at the guy, and he glared right back and said, “What the fuck are you looking at, man? Rude-ass mothahfuckah…guy givin’ me shit!” I knew then and there this guy was very possibly disturbed and beyond the reach of any appeal. I also knew he was a fucking dumbass because when Kyle Chandler‘s FBI agent came to Leo’s mansion with that yellow post-it that Leo slipped to Jonah Hill, the one that said “Don’t incriminate yourself — I’m wearing a wire,” the guy said quite loudly to the front section of the theatre, “That’s the yellow paper he used to write that note!”

Dylan eventually gave up and bolted out of there at the 130-minute mark.

The only way to deal with psychos like this is for three guys to face him as a team. Two guys need to go the lobby and buy three 24-ounce drinks while the third guy goes to a nearby sporting goods store and buys three baseball bats. The friend returns and they all go into the theatre, each carrying a super-size drink and a bat. They drench the talker with three simultaneous hits, one on either side of his face and one on the top of his head, and when he howls like a bison and gets up they fend him off with the bats and if necessary whack him once or twice. I know that’s a ridiculous scenario but you have to do something when these assholes won’t shut up, and the managers of these plexes are candy-asses — they never do anything. So what do you do? Use a taser?

Here’s a June 2013 piece by New York‘s David Edelstein about a similar situation that happened at a June 2013 BAM screening of Mother of George.