Have you ever had a bad experience with fellow audience members while at the theater (either film or stage)? Of course you have. It's akin to asking a cat owner if they've ever caught their pet sleeping. The manners of our fellow movie and theatre-goers aren't exactly stellar these days, and it has no doubt spurred the increase in home streaming viewership, and home theater systems.
I've actually heard from several young(er) people in recent years that they do not consider going to the movies to be a good idea for a date, because they aren't supposed to talk with one another for two hours. Of course, this ignores the notion of getting to know someone better by having a common viewing session, absorbing what you've watched, and then discussing it with them afterwards. You could learn volumes about a person via this experience.
The issue afflicting theater-going is not confined to environments for the performing arts. Have you noticed how folks are always are on their cell phones these days? I'm guilty of this, as well, but will at least abide by the rules laid down by folks like class instructors, meeting facilitators, and anyone else whose presence I'm in that requests that phones be put away. What I find baffling is that others seem to be incapable of this.
If you only knew, dear reader, the number of times I've heard people -- grown adults, mind you -- who stand defiant in the face of detaching themselves from mobile technology for even just two hours. "I've got kids!" "Someone may need to reach me in an emergency!" I've heard it all. Thing is, I remember a time before cell phones. Folks seemed to get by ok. Emergencies are fairly rare. And, if one occurs, there are ways to contact people in old-fashioned ways.
Is it really so difficult to be out of remote contact with others for even just a fairly short period of time? Must we check for texts every few minutes? Do we have to Tweet things constantly? Check Facebook every five seconds? Can we not sit amiably next to someone we know and not speak for a couple of hours? If, as a society, we're answering "yes" to the aforementioned questions, then perhaps it's time to pause and reflect.