Age certificates for films

Now don’t get me wrong I am ALL in favour of this sort of stuff. I am that completely mean mum who doesn’t approve of underage playing of age 18 video games and inappropriate TV programmes……………even though my eldest is now 15 he still laughs at my ‘total shock’ face!

However, tonight it was a different story. I took my eldest to see The World’s End at Showcase in Bluewater. This was a treat just for him away from his pain in the arse younger brother, something for him and me to do together. He is a really good kid and looks after me well with my illness and I wanted to treat him.

When we got there though the ticket girl asked if he had any ID. At first I was shocked at this although part of me did understand, even though he stands at 5’10 and has the token facial hair and spots that go with his age. Now I know what your all thinking, some kids are older looking than others blah blah blah. But I am not that type of parent. I play by the rules. I realise why the rules are there after being married to a policeman for almost 20yrs!!

However, I REALLY do think my son looks his age now. He has shot up in size and demeanor and it really did not cross my mind to even think about ID. Yes the small print in the T’s and C’s say that people may be asked for ID however after he has had access before there I haven’t ever worried.

Tonight though something in me just clicked and I felt determined to push the point!!!

I asked to speak to the manager who just told me he would not go back on a decision the clerk had made!!! Surely as a manager he should have people skills, be able to listen and if necessary override a lower member of staff. I appreciated what he said about the cinema being fined if they were ‘spot checked’ by the council and so I offered to call home and get his passport number and Oyster card number that are traceable and legal documents that could be easily checked should the council ask. The manager even stated that he probably was 15 but now ID had been asked for he could not let him in without it!!!

SO NOT F**KING IMPRESSED!!

Really would a parent stand there and try and argue his case if he wasn’t the required age group? Would a parent offer to ring home for legal document reference numbers that are checkable? Would I offer my name and address and telephone number plus leave my driving licence to back up the surname and parent/child relationship???

In my mind- NO I WOULDN’T.

So why could a decent manager not see this- he did understand and agreed he looked 15 but because the ticket clerk had asked for ID he would not go back on that decision!! SPINELESS in my mind, a cop out from someone in a management position.

So I returned furious, after taking their names I have already sent an email to the General Manager and requested someone gets back to me.

OVER THE TOP? Yes probably, however, my teen is a good kid, we teach him right from wrong, he looks out for me and does lots for me due to my illness, so as a young carer he should be treated better I think- he does look his age so this did nothing for his self confidence!

Rant over- do you agree or not, don’t mind if you don’t but would love to know.

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10 thoughts on “Age certificates for films

  1. I am with you. Up until a few years ago (sadly no longer) I would get id’d for alcohol despite being in my early 30′s. As I don’t drive, I didn’t have a license i could just whip out to prove my age. But on a couple of occasions I got refused, but even when i’d asked them to ask their managers, who agreed i looked old enough, they wouldn’t go back on the decision because they’d already requested id. It was SOOOO frustrating. Especially when i had people coming for dinner and there were offers on specific wine that i’d wanted from that shop. I understand WHY they have to do it but i do think, especially in your case that some people are just too stupid to add up the clues….eg the fact that he was with his MUM who is unlikely to take him to see a film he’s not old enough for etc! I wonder how people get their jobs sometimes. Or even manage to get themselves dressed in the morning, in some cases.

    • I was the same as I am short as well that doesn’t help!! LOL but he was with me- his mum surely the manager could take that into consideration- just me and him!! Thanks for popping over :)

  2. I’m sure that ranting about it makes you feel better (it usually makes me feel better) however, due to changes in law, many places that have age-dependent activities have their hands tied in situations like this.

    I’m 99% sure that the manager agreed with you however if there is any doubt they have to stick to the original decision/request. If they are being checked up on not only would the establishment be fined but also the person who originally didn’t check in the first place (i.e. the cashier).

    I’m on your side in a way – and back when I was a teen it was so much easier to sneak into a movie that was rated above my age and buy cigs and alcohol but I can understand the need for being strict where the law dictates.

    • I do understand why the law id there- it just was infuriating for him to be with his Mum (not a bunch of mates) and the fact that I did question and speak to the manager surely should have shown that we were trying prove ourselves- I really felt bad for him :(

  3. What a shame! He’d been looking forward to seeing that with you since he came down to stay a few weeks back! Hope you both get another chance.

    But where to start on the whole stupidity of the matter:

    1) How a manager cannot over-rule a decision made by a member of staff lower down on the food chain is beyond me. NASA doesn’t abort a launch because Bill the Janitor had a bad burrito for lunch and needed an emergency bowel evacuation but didn’t want to miss the take-off – I’m pretty sure those decisions come from the top. Same thing applies here, if the manager was satisfied that he looked his age, then he could have made an executive decision and let him go in. Isn’t that the whole point of being a MANAGER… to MANAGE situations, and not to rely on your employee’s to tell you how it’s going to be?

    2) “Spot Checks” in cinema’s? Did everyone not get the memo that it is no longer late 1930′s Poland, and the Gestapo no longer exist? Did they ask you to remove yourself from the pavement too? Someone would have needed to sedate me at that point.

    3)It was Journey to the World’s End, not SAW (ing bloody limb’s off) 19. The kid has a moustache and tower’s over his mother. He’s obviously not 10.

    Seriously, in this day and age couldn’t the manager make an executive decision to have let him in (since clearly he totally looks 15/16), especially since he was with his MOTHER. And couldn’t you, his mother, have signed some waiver that meant when the Gestapo did kick down the door, any responsibility would have been with you and not the theatre itself… and you’d have to provide proof of age (which you’d have) to your local police-station within an allotted time? Would this be so hard? I have to sign for the mail sometimes, and I can do that while I’m still half asleep and with only one eye open. Its obviously just too hard to do it in a massive building with a billion computer’s sitting right there… silly me. I always overlook the obvious.

    Never mind “tóg go bog é”. I’m going to teach him to say “Pull your head out of your ass, man!” in his obscure language lesson part 2. It’s perfect for these type of situations.

    Hope you get to see it eventually. Let me know how it is, I’m looking forward to seeing it myself. Just don’t forget to both bring stool samples, and wear your armbands next time you attempt it.

    -Glenn

    • Glenn for once your on my wavelength!! lol- My point exactly about the manager so I sent a complaints email to the relevant people to name and shame him!! I was disgusted and as for the waiver thing it’s a no because the cinema gets a fine- but he wasn’t happy with me offering him the chance to have passport numbers etc so the council could check if they did decide on that one particular night to show up!! I will keep you informed :)

  4. I’m amazed that they asked for ID when you were with him – didn’t think the cinema did that. Must admit we rarely go because it seems so pricey these days, but having to cart along ID would put me off further.

    • I know that’s exactly what I thought! If he had been with friends then I could understand. The cinema is pricey so it’s a treat and heartbreaking when it doesn’t work out :(

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