Among the world’s greatest scientific endeavors, there is a researcher at a Japanese university who has invented introduce a new device for movie theatres that would bring new meaning to the word “scary.”
The researcher is testing a new theatre seat that is outfitted with sensors and electrical wires and would be programmed to give you a hair raising experience on cue as the monster, murderer, alien, or other creepy character marches toward their victim – or you – on the big screen. This is not a joke – the chair has already been tested in Hollywood. The “Chilly Chair,” as it is being called, has patrons resting their forearms inside black tubes that arch over the armrests. To activate the chair, one of the researchers sent10 kilovolts of electricity through the arches and gave a test subject a little jolt that had their arm hairs rise up.
Wow, wouldn’t this be fun? 3-D? Old hat already. Smell-a-vision? Big bomb. But, zapping customers with an electric jolt? How cool is that. Really cool – until something goes wrong, right?
Can you imagine sitting in a theatre, strapped to your seat and the movie starts to roll? Midway through the movie there’s a scary moment on screen, you chair lights up like the Fourth of July and the movie theatre owners send condolences to your loved ones for the ‘slight electrical malfunction’ that turned you and everyone else in the theatre into tomorrow’s breakfast toast. Yes, the insurance industry will love this.
On the other hand it might give worthless movies a new lease on life. You didn’t like this clunker the first time, but now we’ll jolt you with electricity and you’ll just love it because it’s cheaper than a thrill ride at the local amusement park. By the way, please read the warning label on your seat that reads: “This seat may be hazardous to your health, especially if you have a pacemaker.” Fred, one of an elderly couple in the next two seats is heard to say, “Martha is that a tingle I feel? Martha? Martha? Oh lord, what happened to Martha?”
This is the type of research we really need. Forget about a great movie experience because the film is really good. Forget about the cost of a movie now requiring a bank loan. Forget about the theatre not having been cleaned in months so your feet are sinking into a three-foot layer of gum, soda and candy. Let’s just find a way to shock the customers at a whole new level of shock. Yes, that’s the kind of research we need.
Roll ‘em, Julio!