On Sunday evening I experience a first for me since living in this country; my friends and I went to see a movie in the theater, in ENGLISH. It was great! I could follow every plot twist, laugh at every joke, and squirm at the underlying tension. My three friends and I were the only native English speakers in attendance and it became obvious at several points throughout the movie. Some things, like almost being attached by a huge snake, are understandably scary no matter what language or culture you come from. The entire audience gasped or screamed in unison when such events took place. But the subtle underlying subtext of awkward teenage romance, can be expressed very differently. There were points when my friends and I would giggle nervously in hopes of breaking the stale mate on the screen, and the viewers behind could be heared whispering in Uyghur;
“What did they say?”
“I don’t think any of the characters said anything”
“Then why are all of those girls laughing?”
Other subtle turns of phrase or implied jokes would make us laugh out loud and leave our fellow movie goers shaking their heads saying “I don’t get it”.
I have mentioned before that I love watching Uyghur movies, but after seeing how much was missed by those around us, I realize I need to take it to the next step. Instead of just watching their films alone in my room at night, I should invite a group of Uyghur friends over to watch it with me. If they all start laughing or giggling at something I saw as an inconsequential event, to take the time to pause and really try to understand what is going on.
One other part of the movie going experience caught our attention. We are use to staying in our seats and watching the final credits role by, anticipating something the director might have added on at the end. Instead the movie hit its dramatic end, the screen went blank, the projector was turned off, the lights were flicked on and all the seats around us were emptied in under a minute flat. We were all still grabbing our purses and doing up our coats, when we looked around and realized we were the only ones left in the room.
It was defiantly a fun and relaxing evening, hopefully move English flicks will come to town soon.