Let me preface this by saying that, yes, I understand why movie theaters are so anal about not letting kids under 17 into an R rated movie without an adult.
Using a voluntary system, have to follow it so that it doesn't become law, etc.
However, lately, a lot of my coworkers seem to turn into R-rated movie policemen whenever they see a kid who *looks* like they could be under 17 by themselves.
An example from this past Saturday night: I was working an usher shift.
I noticed once of our ICEE machines had a puddle of ICEE in the grate, so I went behind concession to fill up an empty jalapeno jar with hot water to melt it.
While I did so, a coworker who was working concessions finished her transaction with 3 teenaged guys, then immediately came over to me.
She told me to watch those guys because she personally knew one of them and knew that he was still in high school, so she was thinking they were going to sneak into Alien Covenant.
I got good glimpses of their faces and they all looked like they were in their late-teens to me, but she didn't specify what exact grade the high schooler was in so I guess it was likely.
I melt the stuff in the ICEE machine and go to look for my 2 coworkers who are also working as ushers when the supervisor comes up to me and says I "need" to confront the kids in Alien as
the movie's about to start. Thankfully, I find my other 2 coworkers shortly afterwards.
Now, about these 2 coworkers: I was actually training one of them that night, and the other one was working his first or second non-training shift.
The trainee was only 16, so he (understandably) felt awkward about kicking kids out of a movie he wouldn't even be able to legally see on his own.
The other guy was old enough though, and I figure it'd be a good learning experience for him, so I explain what to do and he heads into the theater.
A minute later, he comes back out and tells me "I saw them, but I'm way too nervous to confront them. Could you do it instead?" Ok, I will, but I have him follow me so he can watch.
(He's also much bigger than I am, which I figured would've been handy if they really were underage and they got angry XP).
I go up, ask to see their ID's as politely as I can, and sure enough, 2 of them are 18, the third one is 17. I apologize, thank them, and we walk out.
As soon as we're out, the new employee goes "Well, that was embarrassing.
" And while I brushed it off with "it happens", the more I think about it I really can't find it in myself to disagree with him.
They were clearly in their late teens.
If they had bought tickets to some kids movie, or they had originally asked for Alien tickets but didn't have their ID's on them, the box office worker(s) would've warned us.
This isn't an isolated incident at my theater, too: my very first week they made me go check on a showing of Snowden to check the ID's of 2 kids who were, surprise surprise, both 17.
So, am I giving teenagers too much credit? (We *have* had underaged kids sneak into R-rated movies before, after all). Or are my coworkers being paranoid too often?