Tips from a Twi-hard: How to survive the movie marathon

Posted Online: Nov. 10, 2012, 4:30 pm
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By Laura Anderson Shaw,
Holy Renesmee, Twi-hards! Are you ready for the end?

I don't think I am!

On the other hand, I am ready for Thursday's marathon screening of the first four "Twilight" movies, leading up to the premiere of the final installment, "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn, Part 2."

For those of you who haven't followed the tales of Bella, vampire Edward, their hybrid daughter, Renesmee, and werewolf Jacob, "Breaking Dawn" is the fourth and final book in Stephenie Meyer's series about love and all of the above. The movie version was split into two parts; the first premiered in November 2011, and Thursday the "Saga" will come to a close on the big screen.

As marathon and premiere day nears, Twi-hards like myself are preparing for the roughly 12-hour event. (The marathon will begin at 12:30 p.m. Thursday at Great Escape 14 Stadium Cinemas in Moline, and at 11:30 a.m. at Rave Motion Pictures 53 in Davenport. The first showing of the premiere is at 10 p.m.)

To help you survive the long haul, we asked folks who have participated in previous marathons for some tips on how to make it through the day (and night) at the theater. I included some tips of my own, too.

Here they are:

-- "Don't load up on coffee and Mountain Dew to stay awake. The extra fluids are just going to fill your bladder, and the effects of the caffeine will not last long enough for it to be worth it. ...(Instead, it) will overstimulate your system," saidKay Kachold, of Davenport.

Ashley Adlefinger, of Rock Island, suggested limiting your fluid intake in general.

-- Theater popcorn makes a great, filling snack, but don't add too much salt! Salt will make you thirsty, and the thirstier you are, the more you drink. The more you drink, the more bathroom breaks you'll have to take.

-- If you plan to arrive early, bring a book to occupy yourself. (Perhaps a "Twilight" book!) You'll be at the theater for hours, and you don't want to drain your cell battery on social-media sites!

-- Wear comfortable clothes, sweatpants included, Ms. Kachold andMs. Adlfinger said.

-- Pack essentials such as tissues, lip balm, gloves, socks, hair ties, pain reliever, hand sanitizer and wet wipes, Ms. Kachold said. You'll be glad you did!

-- Eat a big meal before you get to the theater. Once you're there, the only food available will be popcorn, nachos, pretzels and the like.

David Poland, vice president of operations of Great Escape Theatres, which has a Moline location, said outside food and drinks are not allowed in the theater.

The general manager at Rave Motion Pictures in Davenport was unavailable for comment.

-- Leave backpacks, blankets and long overcoats at home. They won't be allowed in the theater, Mr. Poland said.

-- Stand up between each movie, even if you never leave your aisle. Stretch your legs!

-- Take turns when it comes to bathroom breaks. That way, someone is always at your seat to watch your things.

-- If you need something from the concession stand, send only one or two people from your group; the lines will be long, and the lobby will be full.

-- Buy your tickets in advance sometime this week. Whether you are marathoning or just catching the premiere, this will save you from standing in the ticket line!

As marathon/premiere day nears, I also am partaking in my latest "Twilight"-movie-in-theaters ritual. I am debating which "Twilight" T-shirt to wear to the marathon and premiere (My "Runs With Vampires" tee is in the lead); I am rereading the series; and I am listening to the film's soundtracks as if they were the only CDs I own.

You may think I'm crazy, but Thursday, I'll be in good company. Mr. Poland said Moline's Great Escape is expecting some 1,400 people to attend the marathon and premiere. He estimated the flick would play on 10 of the theater's 14 screens.

That's a whole lot of "Twilight" fans!

Mr. Poland said the enthusiasm and excitement are great. Fans already have seen the previous flicks countless times, he said, but there's something special about attending the marathon and experiencing the buildup to the finale.

"I think it's a lot of fun," he said.

As someone who has been to every "Twilight" marathon over the years (and has seen each of the movies on the big screen multiple times), I know firsthand that something magical happens in those theaters where so many people from so many walks of life come together to watch something they love.

As you join in with the shouts and whistles that ring out each time Jacob takes off his shirt, and the sniffles and squeals heard 'round the room during Bella and Edward's wedding, you can't help but befriend the people sitting near you.

My small "Twilight" bag is packed with essentials; my waterproof mascara is out; and my "Twilight" T-shirt and comfy yoga pants are hanging together in my closet. I'm as ready as I can be.

Are you?

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