Sunday, March 21, 2010

It’s Cool, Man!

The movie “Alien” was released in the summer of 1979. I went to see it with my friend Lee and his wife. It was showing at the old Newport Beach Cinema-Dome. Although it was "state of the art" for it's time, this was back in the days before “stadium seating” and other such viewer comforts.

We didn’t purchase tickets in advance and had to wait in a very long line. While we’re waiting Lee looks at me and motions to his mouth. I had no idea what he meant. After a few more “gestures” I finally figured out that he was telling me that he had taken LSD. Not only that, but his wife didn’t know anything about it. She didn't even know that he got high.  She just thought he was crazy.  He just stood there with a big smile on his face. I finally had the opportunity to talk quietly into his ear. “You took Acid? Are you fucking crazy? Do you know what this movie is about? He just smiled at me and said, “It’s cool, man!”

Somebody from the theater came out and told the people in our area of the line, that we might not make into the next showing of the movie. The next showing after that was over two hours away. We weren’t pleased at all. A few minutes later Lee tells his wife and me that he’ll be right back, and he disappears towards the front of the line.

About 10 minutes later, Lee walks back to us and says “it’s cool!”
“What do you mean, it’s cool?”
It’s cool man!”
To this day, I still don't know how he got us in there.

We could tell the last showing was over because of the large number of people walking out of the theater. About 10 minutes later the line starts moving up. It stops moving when they’ve let in enough people to fill the theater again. Or so I thought…

An usher walked up to us and said we should follow him. He led us past the hundred or so people in front of us and walked us right into the building. What in the hell did he do? Lee just smiled. The usher leads right into the theater and marches us to third row center. Lee is happy, but I see a big problem. This isn’t a concert; it’s a huge Cinerama movie screen and we're so close, that were going to have to look up to see everything.

I’ve sat this close to the screen before, it’s not comfortable. It’s like you are in the movie. Oh yeah, one more little issue, Lee is on acid… The movie hasn’t even started yet, but I can see him already retreating within himself

The movie finally starts. I’m splitting my time between watching the movie and watching Lee. He’s not moving a muscle. His eyes are the size of saucers. No, saucers aren’t large enough. They are the size of frigging dinner plates. You’ve seen the movie, right? You know how it is. You know how many “gotcha” moments there are in it. It's chock full of terrifying images also.  Lee doesn’t even twitch. I’m not sure he’s blinking, or even breathing for that matter. I can’t even begin to imagine what is going on in his head.

Sigourney Weaver eventually escapes with the cat and the movie ends. I'm waiting for Lee to freak out, or tell me that he has an Alien growing inside of him.  But he doesn't say a single word. We walk out of the theater and are almost to the car, when he finally looks at me and says, “It’s cool man…”


  1. You have had an extraordinary life and known some extraordinary people - and you have a rather good way of talking about your experiences so they turn into stories.

    I see you've got a 'Tweet This' gadget on your sidebar. Are you on Twitter?


  2. Thanks Lucy, for both stopping by and commenting!
    I thought I was going to "tweet" but I'm just not sure now. It's all about time...
    I'm off to your site!

  3. What a weird story! An acid taker going to see Aliens, and he gets you in the theater?? Man, I was freaked out enough by this movie, I can only imagine what your friend thought. Oh, he did teel us. "It's cool, man."

  4. That movie scare the %$%# out of me. I hated the stomach...well you know what I'm talkin' 'bout. Yeah, how did you get in? That is truly the mystery of life.

  5. Another great story Pat! Was this more orange sunshine?

  6. Wow so many things have happened in your life!! I can't imagine how your friend got throught the movie at all! i sat that close to a screen last summer to watch the movie "Harry Potter" and damn! I felt nauseous and over-stimulated! And I wasn't even on anything!!:P

  7. I just got an email from the star of this escapade, he said:
    "I have only one thing to say----It's cool, Man!!

    I just sent him an email asking for more details. He always says he doesn't remember. He probably gave the usher some drugs or something...

  8. Yikes, you took acid and went to see that movie? Dangggg!

    Tales Of A Fourth Grade Nothing

  9. Ally - no way! It was my friend. I was straight arrow for that movie. uh uh, no way, never!!!
    I have many other times though...there will be more acid related blog posts....

  10. That's an awesome story. Though, I never really liked the movie myself. I kind of found it boring. Your friend sounds a little crazy. It's a wonder he didn't freak out. lol

  11. That was one of my favorite movies when it came out. I was living in Ohio at the time. Then I moved to Texas in Dec. of '80 and the apartment complex we lived in offered free Channel Z as a move-in incentive.

    Free channel Z consisted of Alien and Warriors running alternately 24 hours a day...every day for 6 months. Amazing that I can still sit and watch either of them today...after 400 viewings!

    Never could make the jump to acid for horror movies...had to draw the line somewhere.

  12. I'm amazed that my friend did it. I never ever would have. I've seen it quite a few times myself. I liked it a lot.

  13. I don't think I would have the guts to watch that movie while on acid.. the fact that he did that without freaking out just a little is a bit disturbing lol! as always Pat great story =)

  14. I agree...what was going on in that head of his?
    we'll never know!

  15. Ah well told. My father took me to see it and all i remeber was the annoying teenagers who ruined it for us, until the usher came in and threatened to kick them out. He was much older and was not intimidated them, unlike the children that most cinema chains employ these days.
    A great film. I remember that people were actually fainting and vomited at the time for the shocking chest burster scene. it was quite controversial. Still a good film.
    cheers pat.

  16. Is your friend still cool, man?

  17. Ms. Anthropy - Thank you very much. I'll be over striaght away!

    Anthony - I still get the chills during parts of it. It was a groundbreaker during it's time. Thanks for signing on and commenting!

    Joe - He is still cool. Made it to old age with most of his brain cells also! He's a good guy...

  18. I had a hard enough time with that movie without psychotropic drugs....

  19. Aw, poor thing didn't have much vocabulary when he was high. Hee hee. I can't imagine watching a movie like that if I was high... I'd be freaked enough without the drugs. :)

  20. I can't even imagine why he did it...I wish that he would chime in here. He reads my blog. but he's paranoid about "the internet." LOL

  21. Hahaha great story! Not a movie I would wanna be high for.

  22. There are far worse shows to get high to. 2001, Pink Floyd the Wall. Capt Kangaroo.

  23. Ha, brilliant story, reminds me of the time one of my pals and his girlfriend went to a re-release of The Exorcist in a Dublin cinema in around 2002, they dropped some acid but said that the mostly young crowd laughed so much during the film that they couldn't concentrate on it and it wrecked the effect they wanted! The younger crowd are so use to Scream's ironic take on horror that they couldn't take the movie seriously.

  24. That is an amazing story. Your friend might have been a little crazy.


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