The Aurora Century theater, where James Holmes allegedly massacred 12 people over the summer, is reopening this week with a few violent films featured on the marquee outside.
In fairness, most are family-friendly fare. Yet, three of the movies being screened for free, The Bourne Legacy, Taken 2, and Red Dawn, have a decent number of shootouts and fistfights. Is this in poor taste? Insensitive to the victims?
The operators of the venue must have lost tons of money since they closed six months ago. During a midnight showing of Dark Knight Rises on July 20, University of Colorado doctoral student James Holmes allegedly opened fire in the crowded auditorium. That night, coincidentally, one of the trailers was for Gangster Squad, a Ryan Gosling production which features a scene in which a gunman shoot up a movie audience. Thankfully, the owners of the theater had the good sense not to screen that movie this weekend.
The decision to show these action flicks will surely spark some outrage with the victims' families. But, the owners are between a rock and hard place. It's impossible to not show films containing violence and rampant sexuality. That's the only entertainment Hollywood puts out. And, it's not their fault some lunatic went berserk during the Dark Knight. Are they supposed to remain closed forever and go broke? What about their employees who had to find other work over the last six months?
A remembrance ceremony is scheduled for Thursday night, with Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper as well as Aurora Mayor Steve Hogan in attendance. There are no reports on the fate of auditorium nine, where the massacre took place. Holmes spent three days last week in court during a hearing to determine whether his case will go to trial.