Wednesday, December 8, 2010
At the Movies
A few days ago, I went to the movies for the first time here with my friend Masha.
On my way back from No-Man's-Land one night, I saw a poster for the new Harry Potter movie at Krasni Kit, the Red Whale shopping centre, which is across the street from the autovokzal, the bus station. I've been wanting to go to a movie at a Russian cinema for awhile, and Harry Potter seemed like the perfect choice. No, I'm not one of those huge Potter-heads, but I have read the books so I thought I'd at least have an idea of the general plotline and characters.
We went after I finished teaching at 7:30; Masha had already bought the tickets in advance, which apparently you need to do here. I thought this was kind of strange - the prices of the tickets depends on where you want to sit, and what time the viewing is at. So, for example, Masha bought us tickets for row 9, seats 14 and 15, and the movie started at 8:05pm. Each ticket was 270 roubles. BUT you can buy tickets for crappier seats (ie. the very front row) or even tickets for random odd times (9am!! Seriously!) and then the tickets will only be around 90 roubles. This is soooo different from the cinema in Canada; I can't decide if I like it or not. I guess on one hand its nice to know that you and your friends will get seats together, but what if you don't have time to get the tickets in advance? Or all the good seats are sold out? And um, who goes to the movies at 9 in the morning?? Thoughts, readers? Would you want to see this system adopted in Canada? Also, what do you prefer when it comes to foreign films - subtitles or dubbing?
Harry Potter itself was a pretty good movie; in fact, I don't think the franchise has ever really produced a bad film. It helps that they kept the same actors from the beginning, and that some really awesome British actors play the adult roles - I LOVE Alan Rickman! Even though this was only Part One of the final seventh movie, it was still over 2.5 hours long. Usually my butt is killing me by the end (Inglourious Basterds, anyone?) but the seats here were actually way more comfortable than ones back home! Or maybe I was just way too entranced with the novelty of watching a movie dubbed in Russian that I didn't notice my numb posterior...either way, it was a really neat experience and I'm so glad I went. The dubbing was great - nobody's lips kept moving after they stopped speaking, and they used different voices for the characters. It threw me off a bit though that "Harry" was pronounced "Garry" and "Hermione" became "Germonya" (there isn't really an "H" sound in the Russian alphabet)!
Masha whispered some translations to me whenever I would turn to look at her blankly, but luckily (and surprisingly!) that didn't happen too often. I actually understood a lot more than I was expecting to, and it was fun to teach each other new words too (for example, Harry has to dive into a pond to retrieve a myech', or sword, a word neither of us knew in the other's language).
After the movie was done, we walked back to our flats together and chatted about our favourite characters, the best scene, etc. It was beautiful outside, quiet and peaceful with softly falling snow, and about as far removed from the wizarding world of Hogwarts as possible, thank goodness!
P.S. I was telling Lebron about seeing Harry Potter over the weekend, and he came up with this "joke" that he thinks is hilarious...pronouncing Harry Potter as "helicopter"...I have no idea why he thinks this is so funny...but he would not stop laughing...I really hope my jokes/weak attempts at humour in Russian don't come across as this pathetic...
Posted by KStarr at 12:29 PM