September 11, 2010: I thought I'd go enjoy a new movie with my family tonight at Harkins Theatres. We decided to go to the North Phoenix "Norterra" location off of the I-17 and Happy Valley Road. The movie- Resident Evil, rated R. Typically, I've never been hassled for seeing a rated R movie. Every movie theatre I've gone to, I've simply bought my ticket, had the ticket torn, and allowed to walk freely into the the screen room. However, tonight at this particular Harkins, they denied me entrance into the screen room unless I provided my driver's license.
The employee stuck out his hand motioning me to stop in front of him just as I was about to enter and told me I was not allowed in unless I show him my driver's license. I asked him, "What for? I bought my ticket," and showed him the stub. "Anybody that looks 25 or under must show their ID," said the employee. This upset me greatly, for I had already purchased my ticket at the window, and no one asked for my ID then. The mindless zombie-thug (AKA Hitler Youth) still demanded my ID.
Being that my family was waiting for me inside the movie theatre, I just wanted to get it over with. Harkins already had my money, and I figured for the sake of not scaring my family that I just suck it up and take it and show him my ID like I'm at some Nazi checkpoint or being abused by Border Patrol.
There is no law that prevents 17-year-olds or younger from seeing R-rated movies. These are internal movie industry policies. What's more important to realize, is that after conducting a transaction where a deal has been made, my money for their movie access, they want to subject me to policies that they were not upfront about. All of this Nazi checkpoint stuff should have been completed before I made the purchase of the ticket so I would have a choice of whether or not I would submit to their policy.
The movie was okay, but it would have been better if I wasn't upset about this Nazi checkpoint tactic. The guy reminded me of TSA at the airport. After I got home from the movie, I called the manager, Ian, who told me that they've been doing this for quite some time. I told him that it felt like a Nazi checkpoint, at which he said that the movie theatre didn't give much thought to people who complain about their policies. I definitely won't be going back to that theatre in the future. At least there are other movie theatres I can go to that won't make me feel like I'm at a checkpoint in the airport.