Bringing boomers back to movies

My first date with my wife-to-be was at a now-defunct downtown Boston theater to see the movie phenomenon of 1977, "Star Wars." So that film holds a special meaning for me beyond its rattlin' good adventure story and fresh crop of characters.

The latest "Stars Wars" movie, "Episode 2: Attack of the Clones," opening next week, is aimed at moviegoers who weren't even close to being born back when I saw the Millennium Falcon first blast off. Thus the split personality of "Star Wars" fans, old and new. Can George Lucas keep longtime Star Warriors happy and still grab today's kids? See our cover story.

When the baby-boom generation that first fell for "Star Wars" began to raise its children, most movie viewing switched to tape delay: House-bound parents waited for the tape released months after the film was gone from theaters. Now many in this generation have waved the kids off to college or jobs and are free to head to theaters again.

What will they be looking for? Something other than teen romances, slasher fright fests, and grade-school humor, one supposes.

And maybe better amenities. I've been known to catch movie matinees to save a couple of bucks and smuggle in a box of JuJus to avoid the hyperinflated prices at the candy counter. But last weekend we splurged and saw "Spider-Man" at a "premium" cinema at our local multiplex. We sat in reserved seats that were wide and reclining. Unlimited popcorn and soft drinks, included in the $12.50 price, were delivered to our seats. My conclusion: Yes, I could get used to this!

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