The Brennan family of Avon is on their way to New York City to go to the movies with their son, Kyle Patrick Brennan, late this afternoon to see his appearance on the big screen as a cop in The Dark Knight Rises.
While they're excited, their thoughts are with the victims of the shooting at an Aurora, CO., movie theater during the midnight showing Friday of the last in the Christopher Nolan Batman series. At least 12 were killed and about 38 were injured in the incident.
"As far as the shooting in Colorado, I must say that I am distraught about what happened and feel so deeply for the people involved," Avon resident Jan Brennan, Kyle's mother, wrote in an e-mail to Patch. "It definitely has taken some of the excitement out of our NYC weekend. I almost feel guilty going to see the movie knowing what pain it has brought to so many people."
Canton filmmaker and actor Steve Emirzian said he was rattled by the incident, but he still feels safe going to the movies.
"The story shook me to the core when I heard about all the deaths and those many more wounded," Emirzian wrote in a message to Patch. "It doesn't make me feel less safe to go to the movies because of this horrible tragedy. Insane people are going to do whatever they wish whether it's trying to impress a Hollywood celebrity by threatening to assassinate a president or blaming a film with violence for their own unstable ways. I grew up on the most violent movies and TV shows out there, but I never had the urge to harm people."
The tragedy will not ruin the movies for Avon filmmaker and actor Brian Smith, who goes by Brian Spectre.
"Very sad to see people killed and injured by the actions of one sick person. My prayers go to them and all who are suffering because of this," he wrote to Patch. "However, I wont let this horrible act scare me away from the movies. Movies are the great escape and having the actions of one mentally unstable person take that escape away from us all just isn't going to fly."
Emirzian said "the tragedy today in Aurora was horrendous, but it wasn't the first time popular culture was used as an excuse for unbalanced minds."
"Those of us old enough to remember Charles Manson and his followers know he used the Beatles song 'Helter-Skelter' to carry our his heinous acts," Emizirian said. "Manson claimed the song was sending him a message. The Columbine shooters were fans of violence in film, specifically 'The Matrix,' and used that as an excuse to go on their rampage. This was just another very troubled individual who wanted to get attention. What better way than dressing up in a costume and going to a popular film premiere to do his evil?"
The tragedy does not change Emirzian's sense of safety in going to a movie theater.
"I pray for the families of the dead and wounded," Emirzian said. "As horrific as this event was, we must understand it was an isolated incident."