The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

Taylor Swift redefines movie theater etiquette with new concert film

Photo courtesy of IMDb
Taylor Swift at an event for “Taylor Swift: Eras Tour.” Swift’s new film brings impact to the cinemas with packed theaters.

Taylor Swift reimagines the traditional cinematic experience with the release of her new movie, “Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour.”

The film was essentially a recording of The Eras Tour from her performances at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, California. 

“Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour” was originally set to release on October 13, but according to Swift, the release date was moved to October 12, due to “unprecedented demand.”

At the 6 p.m. AMC Champaign 13 showing, the typical quiet atmosphere of a movie theater was disregarded. Audience members sang, clapped and cheered for the entirety of the showing. At times, it was difficult to tell whether the cheers and clapping were from the recording or the live audience.

The several fan chants were not forgotten, such as the double clap in “You Belong With Me” or the “One, Two, Three, Let’s go bitch!” in “Delicate.”

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Audience members applauded and cheered after each song; however, they remained seated until the end of the film.

In addition to singing along, audience members were also using their phones more frequently than in a traditional movie theater. Usually during a movie, taking out a phone and sending a text message is strictly frowned upon. However, during “Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour,” audience members frequently opened their phones.

Photography and filming from the crowd were also common, even with flash. At one point of the film, an audience member in the first few rows took a flash video of themself and then proceeded to point the camera toward the crowd. 

During the song “marjorie,” audience members took out their phones, turned the flashlights on and swayed to the song, which was customary at the live tour. This additional light made it difficult to view the film since the set lighting was dark and moody. 

Images and videos circulated on social media of Swift’s fan base flocking to AMC movie theaters to see the new film. The showing at AMC Champaign 13 was no different.

Despite the rain, the line for merchandise and concessions was out the door. While waiting in line, fans chatted, complimented each other’s outfits and traded friendship bracelets, which was a staple activity at “The Eras Tour” earlier this year. 

AMC sold limited edition popcorn buckets, glow wands and tote bags all adorned with “The Eras Tour” graphic.

In the large theater, the energy was very different from a regular movie experience.

Almost every seat was taken by people of all ages and genders. Some were dressed in concert outfits, while others sported tour merchandise such as the coveted blue tour crewneck.

Sanjivani Sharma, senior in Engineering, said she went to a Houston show of “Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour” and shared that the knowledge that Swift was there was what made the tour special.

“The view you get here in the movie theater is different so there’s different aspects of it,” Sharma said. “But I loved the tour a lot.” 

Shreya Singh, senior in Engineering, said her seats for the Houston show were toward the back, so it was a different experience to see Swift right in front of her during the movie. 

Swift was so close on the screen that the audience could see the chips in her manicure. Each of Swiftʼs nails was painted a different color to correspond with one of her albums. 

Another difference was having an introductory transition for each era. At the beginning of each era’s set, there was a unique clip that highlighted the album in its respective style.

One transition that garnered many screams throughout the theater was the “reputation” intro. A computer-generated snake was superimposed onto the stage with the title displayed on the walkway. 

Included in the recording were two of the surprise songs that Swift performed at SoFi Stadium, one of which was the acoustic track “Our Song” from her self-titled debut album.

“I’m glad that she included her first album because there’s nothing in the set,” Singh said. 

The piano surprise song was “You’re On Your Own Kid” from Swift’s album “Midnights.”

Kara Dixon, a Swift fan in attendance, said she wished more surprise songs were included in the movie, not just the two.

“I wish she would’ve done more, though,” Dixon said. “Because itʼs a movie, I think we could’ve had all six that they recorded.” 

During the final song, “Karma,” many audience members stood up and danced. The audience clapped during the outro as Swift recognized her dancers, backup singers and her band.  

“Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour” finished with an end credit scene: a combination of a tour blooper reel as well as a fan montage set to “Long Live” from Swift’s “Speak Now” album.

“I absolutely loved it. It was like reliving the tour,” Singh said. 


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