The Projector – Part 4

The Brighton Plaza Cinema 5/2/21 – Jack

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Jack arriving late, attempted to quietly slip into the row, mangling a few toes on the way to his seat. He apologized profusely to the affected people. They seemed to dismiss it as unavoidable, easing his concern of having hurt his fellow patrons. Seeing how the previews were still running, he was glad not to have missed anything yet, nor messed up anyone else’s viewing pleasure. Jack was kind like that. He reflected for a minute that, having been raised by his MawMaw, he knew she would be proud of his interactions with others. 

Considering where he grew up, how he turned out was a miracle. His life wasn’t easy, not only because of living in Detroit, MI, a city with the highest crime rates, it was just he and his grandmother fighting the good fight, no other extended family. She was the only one he still had after his mom left and his dad died in a robbery gone wrong. Fortunately, his MawMaw raised him to be better than where and who he came from. Her goal was to see that he made something of himself, and he indeed showed that he was heading in that direction. He could be pleased about it as well as his grandmother.

Jack was looking forward to watching Emergent; sci-fi thrillers were his favorite genre. It was nice to get out of his head and imagine a different reality, daily life being so taxing for him at times, imagining an unreal future being a welcomed change of pace. No bullets to dodge in his neighborhood, only watching phasers on the screen and the bad guys getting shot, not him. Who wouldn’t relish that kind of visual entertainment and not have to face the fear of merely trying to get home safely? Jack got comfortable and waited for the show to begin.

The movie started with the Tangent II crew shooting through space on a mission to a newly discovered planet. There were five members on board, three of them with various science research specialties, and the other two handled engineering and staffing the flight deck. All assigned to this mission, except for the captain, were recent graduates from the space academy, and this was their virgin flight. The crew was under the impression it would be uneventful as they didn’t anticipate any new life forms, just vegetation. It did require studying, though, being a new planet.

After landing on Zenlev’s surface, Emergent quickly ramps up with action sequences. The vegetation turned out to be somewhat aggressive and lethal. It was a rather predictable plot, Jack nevertheless enjoying it. The crew rapidly launched into survival mode rather than pursuing the necessary research they were tasked with. The scenes which followed had all crew members getting slaughtered in dramatic ways except for one space cadet, who correctly identified how to stop the vegetation in its tracks. She managed to get back onto her ship and headed towards home, a lost but triumphant gaze on her face.

As the credits rolled, Jack took a deep breath, satisfied with the ending. Putting his jacket back on, he gathered up his candy and drink, slowly getting up to walk up the aisle. It was then Jack realized that the theater was empty. Wow, he thought to himself, he was totally engrossed in that movie!

TO BE CONTINUED ON FRIDAY…

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