Yeah, so, The Kid went to the movie theater for the first time.
I went to the movies all the time when I was a teenager, and I worked in movie theaters for more than 8 years. I love going to the movies. I was really nervous and excited about taking Calvin to see his first movie.
Taking a 4-year-old to the movies is tricky even for a typically developed 4-year-old, so we were unsure of how it would go with our boy. We mentally prepared ourselves, telling ourselves that if he didn’t like it we would be leaving early. And once we accepted that idea the whole trip becomes a lot less worrisome.
It turns out we didn’t need to worry at all. Calvin did awesome at the movie theater. We took him to see the new “Peanuts” movie, which is filled with characters that he already knows and loves. We sat down in the theater and set him up with a big bag of popcorn and his cup of water, and he was already in heaven, because popcorn!
Then the previews started … Ugh. Kids movies are kinda awful, huh? There were previews for another “Chipmunks” movie. Ewww. A preview for an “Angry Birds” movie that made me wonder when the “Candy Crush” movie was coming out. And a bunch of other kid movies filled with violence and fart jokes. Will we be taking Calvin to see those movies?
To be fair, Calvin did laugh out loud at the preview of “The Secret Life of Pets,” specifically the scene in which a wiener dog uses a mixer to scratch his back. OK, fine, I laughed out loud, too. I’m not made of stone, people.
All the previews were crazy loud, and Calvin did look a little concerned during the “Ice Age” cartoon short before the movie, as did I, because it was really dumb, and I was wondering who thought this was funny. It’s very concerning.
Anyway, once the movie started, all was well. Calvin really enjoyed the movie. He got really excited whenever Snoopy showed up. He got a little restless near the end of the movie, but all the kids were restless by the end, and he stayed in his seat. He was dancing in his seat during the end credits when they show the characters dancing. It was darn cute.
Mighty, mighty good man David is a big fan of the “Peanuts” comic strip, and he liked the movie, too. It definitely keeps the spirit of the TV specials that I remember. I’m so glad it was Calvin’s first movie-going experience. The movie is very sweet. There’s no violence, fart jokes or scary villains. All in all, it’s a pretty mellow movie.
We went back to the theater the following week to see the movie again with his school friends Avery and Adeline at a sensory screening. A sensory screening is when they show the movie, but the lights are only dimmed and the volume is turned down just a bit so people with sensory disorders can enjoy the movie. Calvin did fine during a regular screening, but – out of curiosity – we wanted to check it out. It’s such a great idea, and I’m so glad that they do something like this for people with sensory issues. It’s also a great way to see a movie with a young child – not just a child with autism, but any young child. Kids are free to talk and move around if they need to. It’s not dark and loud, so it’s not so scary for them. It’s very casual, and it felt like there was less worry about behaving. If you have a young child and you’re hesitant to bring them to a movie, this is a great way to introduce them to seeing movies in the theater. We will definitely go back, so Calvin can see “Mockingjay Part 2” on the big screen. He’s really into “The Hunger Games.” I kid. We will end up seeing “The Good Dinosaur” but definitely not any of the “Chipmunk” movies. Those movies can fuck off.