Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Free movie stuff!

Sometimes the second shall be first. Case in point: the Summer Blockbuster Series, a lineup of action-adventure films between now and August. People who participate agree to attend on the day after the movies have opened, so they probably wouldn't be the most rabid fans. But there are perks.

Here's how it works: Moviegoers who sign up via Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/pages/2012-Summer-Blockbuster-Series/391167347582076) get together for lunch or dinner, depending on the time of the scheduled showing. They eat, get prizes, watch the screening and agree to post comments about the experience on Facebook. Everyone who went to the "Avengers" screening got an Avengers bag, poster and key chain. Promoters also gave away 18 tickets to the Comedy Zone and two fireworks bundles from Phantom Fireworks.

Another group will go to "Battleship" Saturday. The list of screenings then stretches on to "Men in Black III," "Total Recall," "Prometheus," "G.I. Joe: Retaliation," "The Amazing Spider-Man," "The Dark Knight Rises" and "The Bourne Legacy."

Two thoughts occur to me. First, "Battleship" is the only movie on this list -- "Avengers" included -- that isn't a prequel, spinoff, sequel or remake, and even "Battleship" is inspired (however loosely) by a board game. Hollywood has always suffered crises of originality, but this one seems especially acute.

Second, there are some movies that should be seen only if someone gives you a gift to make the event  worthwhile. I need no inducement to see "Dark Knight" and "Prometheus," but anyone who wants me to sit through a "G.I. Joe" sequel had better provide a non-cinematic incentive. A Rolex would be about right.

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