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Ever sneak snacks into a movie? This theater forced patrons to ‘shame-eat’ contraband before entering

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If you’re in the habit of sneaking snacks into movie theaters, you might want to avoid New York City’s Cinépolis Chelsea, where one worker apparently mistook his minimum wage ticket-taker job for a gig as a prison guard.

Last Monday, the ticket-taker was spotted using a flashlight to rifle through customers’ bags, according to the New York Post.

When food was found, moviegoers were forced to “shame-eat” the contraband before they could enter the theater.

According to the Post:

A guard busted one woman and banished her to a drab corner seating area to gobble down the forbidden food before a matinée at the West 23rd Street theater. The woman, who had brought the contraband in a plastic bag, was sent to the popcorn purgatory seating area near the condiment bar.

Some customers weren’t happy.

“Sounds like a power trip,” 24-year-old Adam Schiff told the Post, “Clearly the owners want to punish moviegoers by forcing them to sit in an isolated area.”

The general consensus seemed to be that a theater that charges $17.75 per ticket and upwards of $10 for a soda and candy should expect a little contraband to be brought in by thrifty customers.

“If they want people to buy food, then don’t sell popcorn for way too much,” said 24-year-old Brooklyn student Maria Costa.

Interestingly, a Post reporter who tried to sneak in a burger and fries was told by a ticket-taker to “Be careful — please make sure you throw everything in the garbage [after you eat it] so I don’t get in trouble.”

The theater claimed through a spokeswoman that they were actually “looking for weapons.”

“Our policy is, if a guest comes in with a large bag, it’s searched for safety reasons. If food is found during that search, guests are asked to finish food outside theater or bring it to their cars. That’s probably what these people encountered,” spokeswoman M.J. Salcido told the Post.

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Scott Morefield

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