You’ll always notice two things at any commercial screening: (1) Significant numbers of people entering right at the end of the trailers and just as the feature is beginning, as if they’ve been standing around outside (texting, chatting) and waiting for the last possible moment to take their seats, and (2) a stream of viewers constantly leaving and re-entering starting around the 45-minute mark. Leaving and re-entering, leaving and re-entering, leaving and re-entering.

I was sitting in the front (handicapped) row during yesterday’s Ready Player One showing at the Grove, and that trance-like state we all want to submit to was being constantly shattered by these antsy little three-year-olds charging across my sight lines…running out, coming back in…running out, coming back…running out, coming back in. I said “three year-olds” because these guys are most likely hitting the bathroom, and toddlers are the only ones who can’t hold it for the length of a film.

Has anyone ever heard of an old-fashioned idea called “hitting the head before the movie starts so you don’t have to leave during Act Two or Act Three”? Hollywood Elsewhere always takes care of business in this fashion. I almost never take a bathroom break. I don’t want to risk missing anything important.

My theory is that these jerks are coming in with their 48-ounce soft drink containers and pouring it all down within the first 20 to 30 minutes, and so their bladders are bursting 30 minutes later. They try to hold it and finally give up. If I bring a drink into the theatre it’s always the smallest size, and I never take more than two or three sips, and half the time it’s from a water bottle.