Today, entertainment news broke that Paramount Pictures -- after an unsuccessful attempt to launch a TV series based on Beverly Hills Cop - -was instead looking to re-team with Eddie Murphy on a fourth BHC feature, the first since 1994. While the idea of grinding more use out of old franchises is consistently depressing, I mostly responded to the news with nostalgia. I was working at a California movie theater as a teenager in 1984 when the original Beverly Hills Cop became a smash hit. And I often managed to make sure I was in the theater at some of the moments that got the hugest crowd reaction: Murphy's Axel Foley first meeting Bronson Pinchot's gallery employee, Serge; Foley playing the race card to get a room at the fully booked Beverly Palms Hotel; the banana in the tailpipe. Yes, I was watching a superstar being born, but I was also enjoying the contact high of the communal movie-going experience at its best.
That same year I also got to see multiple audiences go through the roof during The Karate Kid's climactic championship fight, and over the years, I've never forgotten how intoxicating it can be to emerge from one of those movies where everyone is lost in a laugh, a cheer or a scare together. I mentioned these and some other memorable experience -- like the Hulk vs. Loki fight in Marvel's The Avengers -- on Twitter under the hashtag #AudienceExplosions, and found a few others who remembered indelible moments of being in a movie audience when a single moment united the viewers in a single emotion.
So, what audience explosions have stuck with you? When was a communal roar of laughter, or cheer for the hero, enough to carry you somewhere truly special? Share with us -- this can be a communal experience, too.