She texted. We kicked her out.

Alamo blog:

As many of you know, I really can't abide people who talk during a movie. A couple of years ago I was accosted in the Village parking lot by a patron who was warned for talking in a movie. I've nearly come to blows more than a few times over the years with rude customers over the same issue. When we adopted our strict no talking policy back in 1997 we knew we were going to alienate some of our patrons. That was the plan. If you can't change your behavior and be quiet (or unilluminated) during a movie, then we don't want you at our venue. Follow our rules, or get the hell out and don't come back until you can.

Recently, we had a situation where a customer persisted in texting in the theater despite two warnings to stop. Our policy at that point is to eject the customer without a refund, which is exactly what went down that night. Luckily, this former patron was so incensed at being kicked out, she quickly called the office and left us the raw ingredients for our latest "Don't Talk or Text" PSA. You can check it out below, or come to the Alamo this weekend where the video will be playing before all of our R-rated movies.

Tags: , ,

30 Responses:

  1. DzM says:

    I have watched several films at the Alamo. If theaters in the Bay Area were half as awesome as the Alamo then I'd actually go see movies more often than now (which is to say "more than once a year"). If they were fully as awesome then I'd be out seeing films twice a week.

  2. i understand phonecalls, but texts? why, the light?

  3. Brian Dunbar says:

    When we adopted our strict no talking policy back in 1997 we knew we were going to alienate some of our patrons.

    They'd have me for a patron, just for that policy alone.

  4. mikecotton says:

    Ready to move to Austin yet?

    Sure the summers get a little hot, and the governmental officials in this part of the world are pretty much batshit insane (not that you're unfamiliar with that problem), but you'll never have to wear the shorts of denial again.

  5. Barry Kelly says:

    She enunciates "Alamo Drafthouse" a little too clearly and too often, makes me somewhat suspicious it's an act...

    • Jim Strathmeyer says:

      I'm suspicious as to why anyone at the Alamo Drafthouse thinks this makes them look good.

      • Barry Kelly says:

        Oh, I've had to dodge people looking to beat me up after the movie for telling them to stay quiet or shut up during the movie. I'm strongly in favour of the policy, and if I were in the customer catchment area, I'd have a strong preference for this place, even if it keeps people like you (seemingly) out.

        • Jim Strathmeyer says:

          Yes, I have a similar reaction to your anecdote, except you're leaving out the name of the theater that I need to avoid.

          • Barry Kelly says:

            From our different conventional spellings of "favour" vs "theater" I'm sure we won't accidentally cross paths.

          • Paul Toohey says:

            Every. Single. Theatre. In. The World.

            If you need to talk or use your phone, you need to stay home.

            Thanks.

          • Chris says:

            Is that all it takes to keep people like you away? Thank God. His anecdote takes place at every theater that's near you; hope that helps.

      • LafinJack says:

        Why would this make them look bad?

        • Jim Strathmeyer says:

          Ask someone over thirty what 'customer service' is.

          • LafinJack says:

            They were serving every other customer there that was not her. Allowing one of your customers to mess with the experience of the rest is not good 'customer service'.

          • pavel_lishin says:

            She stopped being a customer when she broke the rules of the establishment, and then left an angry voicemail assuring them that she'll never return.

          • Joe Crawford says:

            Customer service sometimes means kicking people the fuck out because they are messing with the customer service of other people.

            It's a movie, get off your fucking phone.

          • Puzz says:

            As someone who has been going to the theater in question since they opened the first screen I can assure you they have the best customer service of any movie theater out there. Not having to deal with idiots on their phones during the movie is a service they provide to *me* and a lot of other customers who want to actually watch a movie.

            FWIW, This policy is only a small fraction of why this is the best theater ever. (Beer, Food, really great special shows, comfortable seating.. etc).

            • Jim Strathmeyer says:

              Ok, I get it, you guys aren't black.

              • meeks says:

                how does this have anything to do with being black?

                as someone who is black, i find your statements offensive, AND, (hold on to your hat) i abhor the use of cell phones, and people who talk during movies.

                if you can't understand how that kind of behavior is disruptive and disrespects everyone else who has paid to see a film, then you're a damn fool (which surprises NO ONE since you've made it clear that you're a racist, selfish, moron.)

                also, fuck you :D

            • name says:

              "WIW, This policy is only a small fraction of why this is the best theater ever. (Beer, Food, really great special shows, comfortable seating.. etc)."

              Do i get you correctly, can one drink and eat while watching the movie?

          • Sarah says:

            Removing people who disrupt the movie by talking or waving their shiny cell phones around sounds like awesome customer service to me.

            And I'm 37. Thanks for playing!

            • Jim Strathmeyer says:

              How can you tell that you won't be subject to the institutionalized authority of someone who doesn't like people like you? Is it the color of your skin?

              • Sarah says:

                Obvious troll is obvious at this point (seriously, what exactly do race or "institutionalized authority" have to do with any of this--unless you're assuming the disruptive asshole in question is black simply because she says things like "Magnited States of America," in which case you might want to see a good ophthalmologist because holy shit that is one huge plank you've got in your eye) but what the hell.

                If I had to guess, I'd say it wouldn't happen to me because when I go into a movie theater and see a PSA warning me not to talk or text during the movie or I will be asked to leave, I don't talk or text during the movie. I'm not sure what part of this is so difficult for you to understand.

              • Editer says:

                "Sir, you have to buy a ticket if you want to see the movie."

                "It's because I'm black, isn't it?"

          • Owen says:

            Ok, I'm over 30, and I don't have a problem with what this theater did.

            Look, they're being upfront about their policies, and if you don't like it, don't buy a movie ticket there, or go get a refund before you see the show.

  6. Luke Lathrop says:

    We moved from California to Austin for two reasons:
    1. real BBQ (Lockhart!)
    2. Alamo Drafthouse

    being able to afford a house was just a bonus

  7. Jeff says:

    Nice. This story has made it to CNN.