Since The Man and I first heard that Alamo Drafthouse hosted the event, Jaws on The Water, it has been on our bucket-list of things we must do in Austin. We had recently talked with our Buddy before Fons PR organized our chance to check it off the list, and I was quick to take advantage of this great opportunity. Buddy got his ticket soon after, and our plans for the 20th were set.
Anyone who knows me, would agree that my excitement tends to grow the closer to an event I get. Even with Shark Week beginning on July 22nd, my body didn’t think it was enough to play as spectator. Friday morning, I jumped into the blood bath by biological force. In true annoyed form, I grumbled at the amusing irony while I armed myself with all the necessary armor. Ladies; Floating, watching Jaws, riding the crimson tide.
Watching The Man leave for his day of long work in the hot Texas heat, I grew skeptical. He came home exhausted and in pain. It wasn’t long after his first steps through the door, that our group of three dwindled to two. It seemed as though the reach of this film gnawed into my personal life, and came back around for seconds.
With that, our Buddy and I headed out for the event, towels in tow.
Volente Beach Resort and Waterpark is set in a little pocket just off Texas’ Colorado River. It provides the local community with beach front, a small pool, a few pool slides, and a kiddie wading pool. The area is nice, and the accommodations could keep most people happy. I felt that many of the young adult males working their positions would rather be doing anything else, but there were one or two who showed a lot of appreciation for their work.
Meanwhile, Alamo’s crew were very professional and helpful. Each team member we met was capable of assisting us independently, and without question. I’m grateful for the people Alamo Drafthouse hires, since most of them have always provided me with unhindered help.
Our drink tickets covered some domestic beers, and our meal ticket provided us with local barbecue sandwiches. I was able to fin-agle an Austin Eastcider out of the bar rather than a beer, which made for a much more pleasant night. My barbecue (sans bun), which included brisket and sausage, was delicious. Since The Man was at home, I enjoyed extra onions along side my jalapenos and pickles. The stand offered Waterloo sparkling waters, which I’d just recently tried through PrimeNow. They’re delicious straight, or mixed.
Soon the waters became populated by patrons floating in impressive yellow tubes. There were a significant amount of people attending the film, though it didn’t feel overwhelmingly packed in.
The design of our inner-tubes included a headrest emblazoned with Alamo Drafthouses’ signature “A” icon, a cup holder, and printed bite mark out of the front.
We headed down with our tubes (which are part of the ticket price, and we bring home), full bellies, and ready for our film.
I’m glad that this event had less of a hosted introduction, but that it was still informative. We were provided with our own mesh garbage bags to throw our cans and trash into while we floated, and were asked to keep the lake tidy. They also handed out glow sticks to help cater to our drink needs, which helped lessen interruptions during the viewing time.
I loved not having to deal with people splashing to and fro, just to grab a drink. The workers were timely, thorough, and dealt with my terrible patron puns. Kudos, fellas.
If you’re like me, where a film may not jar you, but the real events tend to keep you on edge, this event will be a blast. I appreciate the time when Jaws was released and how it was horrifying for people. I have spoken with plenty of friends who have a difficult time swimming in a heavily chlorinated deep pool for irrational thoughts of sharks getting them. However, watching the film left me giggling most of the time, but still on edge for story progression. I can’t help but laugh at the dead eyed shark as he politely nom-noms or boops people.
But let me tell you…
During the film, screams periodically let out as divers surprised viewers with bubbles and nibbles. Each time a scream broke our attention, I’d sit rattled and waiting for whoever was next. Still, I never knew how many people were startled, how often, or when. Buddy thought it’d be funny to startle me, but that resulted in a sore arm for him and a small chuckle. Our film continued on, and the stories climax began. The water lapping our tubes was all that could be heard, and then it happened.
A massive bubble pocket released immediately below me. It was theatrically large. I yelled out and popped up, and as Buddy looked over, the diver slowly emerged over my shoulder.
“A-are you okay?” Diver politely growled into my ear
*laughing, gasping, and startled* “Yes, I’m okay.” Boobs
“Are you sure?” Diver, not swayed
“Absolutely. I’m absolutely fine.” Boobs, still gasping
“-Because you straight up disappeared. Like you were gone.” Diver
Imagining what that had to look like, I began laughing harder. “I promise, I’m very okay.” Boobs.
The story finishes as Chief Martin Brody (Roy Scheider) blows up the shark (because that’s all that can be done to this monstrous eating machine) and fireworks shoot off behind the screen. Matt Hooper (Richard Dreyfuss) resurfaces, and the film ends.
It was a great film. Buddy’s opinion of it being a slow burn was inaccurate to me. It was nothing like the directors cut of Dawn of The Dead. This film had a story line that progressed relatively well, characters you wanted to live and some you didn’t. I enjoyed the movie and the event.
We waited our turn to get out of the water, since most everyone was hustling ahead, and we tidied up our trash along with some remnants of other patrons. Buddy later mentioned how absolutely hilarious it was watching me yell out, and seeing the diver slowly come up confused, but his favorite part was watching my face as the movie story unfolded. I’d mentioned at one point that, “If the shark eats Chief Martin’s baby, I’m straight up walking out.”
I strongly suggest partaking in an event like this, whether it’s here in Austin, or if it’s offered elsewhere. Maybe you’re absolutely freaked out by the idea, or maybe you’re pretty hard to scare, but there’s a lot of room for anyone.
Another thanks to Fons PR, Alamo Drafthouse, and every worker who joined in creating this great experience.
I couldn’t help but think about Laurent Durieux’s Jaws print as the film played.
About Alamo Drafthouse
Tim and Karrie League founded Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in 1997 as a single-screen mom and pop repertory theater in Austin. Twenty years later, the now 26-location chain has been named “the best theater in America” by Entertainment Weekly and “the best theater in the world” by Wired. The Alamo Drafthouse Cinema has built a reputation as a movie lover’s oasis not only by combining food and drink service with the movie-going experience, but also introducing unique programming and high-profile, star studded special events. Alamo Drafthouse Founder & CEO, Tim League, created Fantastic Fest, a world renowned film festival dubbed “The Geek Telluride” by Variety. Fantastic Fest showcases eight days of genre cinema from independents, international filmmakers and major Hollywood studios. The Alamo Drafthouse’s collectible art gallery, Mondo, offers breathtaking, original products featuring designs from world-famous artists based on licenses for popular TV and Movie properties including Star Wars, Star Trek & Universal Monsters. The Alamo Drafthouse Cinema is expanding its brand in new and exciting ways, including a film distribution company, founded in 2010, which has already garnered three Academy Award nominations and Birth.Movies.Death., an entertainment content platform for movie lovers.
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