My mom and I took Joey to see Madagascar 2 on opening day. I've been looking forward to this day since I heard they were making a sequel over a year and a half ago. My mom wanted to go because Madagascar is one of the 1st movies she and Joey enjoyed together and it has become one of their favorites.
We had a rough morning that day so I probably should have cancelled going to the movies but I didn't want to disappoint my mom. Even though she pushed to have Joey diagnosed, she doesn't quite grasp what his diagnosis means and how his needs to come before everyone else's.
Joey fell asleep on the way to the movie but woke up when we got there. He seemed very excited about the movie until it started. The noise was unbearable. His hands immediately went up over his ears and he looked like he was in pain, yet when I asked him, he didn't wanted to leave. I ran out to the manager to ask if they could lower the volume and they did. I enjoy going to the movies, but even I felt that it was too loud for my ears. Loud noises do bother Joey but he has never been bothered in a movie theatre before, even at this location.
Joey seemed better after the volume was lowered and the hands slowly came down. He enjoyed his pretzel and some of my popcorn and we had a good time. The ears got covered again a little over halfway through but he still didn't want to leave. He was in awe of seeing his favorite characters on the big screen.
The Autism Society of America - Greater Phoenix Chapter offers Sensory Friendly Films which is only at one movie theatre in Phoenix and one in Mesa, with one showtime on the 1st Saturday of every month (of course, I work on Saturdays). They show the selected film with lights turned up and the sound turned down so that children affected by Autism Spectrum Disorders can enjoy the film in a setting just for them. What I would like to see is more movie theatres offering this or for all theatres showing children's movies to just lower the volume! With 1 in 150 kids affected by Autism and many other children affected by other disorders like Sensory Processing Disorder, the vast majority of children would benefit from having the volume turned down.
You can get more info about Sensory Friendly Films at http://www.phxautism.org/calendar/month.php