The Art of Watching Films

Warning: pretty pointless blog right here, so it will just waste a few minutes of your life. Here’s a picture of a cute puppy in a teacup to make up for it, because why not?

It has come to a time in my life when I know exactly who I should and shouldn’t watch a film with, so you could say that I’m aging rather well. 

There are three film-watching modes that I have:

1. When in a cinema, I occasionally enjoy munching on popcorn

2. When with friends watching a film and are in mutual agreement that we will be making witty comments throughout

and 3. For all other situations, sit, be quiet and enjoy the film. 

Starting with number 1, for all future references it is not a good idea to go see a film with grandparents who aren’t really interested in said film because they will most likely fall asleep. You then have to awkwardly pat them awake quietly because the snoring is annoying everyone else, but really you’re happy for a few moments of peace from not having to answer questions such as, ‘Who’s that?’, ‘What’s happening now?’ or even, ‘How much longer will this go on for?’. 


Next point of discussion: food in the cinema. I know it’s overpriced, but food is a very special part of the experience of watching a film on a massive screen with a bunch of strangers in a dark room. However, popcorn – although delicious – is probably the worst possible food choice to have in the cinema. Honestly, who said, ‘Hey, let’s sell popcorn in cinemas. It makes a lot of noise when you rustle around to pick some up, makes even more noise when you chew it and it even gets stuck in your teeth – absolutely perfect for the cinema experience’. Most people I find just give up and go for some chocolate or, even worse, nachos, so the popcorn eaters are left with their noisy dilemma. Some just shove it in their gobs and disturb those around them, but if you’re like me then eating popcorn in the cinema has become one of your finest skills.

I time my chewing and rustling for moments in the film where it becomes incredibly noisy so as not to disturb anyone, but there have been multiple times where, during a loud scene, I pick up a huge handful of popcorn, stuff it into my mouth and suddenly the film goes silent. There I am, surrounded by strangers who are avidly listening to the now-quiet film with a mouthful of popcorn, unable to do anything. I’ve had to wait until it returns to louder levels to resume chewing.

Moving away from cinemas to your fun films at home, there is nothing better than watching a movie – which you may have seen before –  with some friends or family where you all happily (try to) make witty comments to earn a few laughs. It’s fantastic!

However, there is a time and place for this and this time and place is not every time you watch a film

As mentioned in a previous post, I live with my parents (try to remember I am still seventeen) so I’ve experienced many films with them. My Mum is a great film-buddy as we both enjoy watching the scariest films we can find because we’re certain that they won’t scar us for life. (Seriously, who comes up with some of those story lines?!)

My Dad – the wonderful Dutch man – is also another great film-buddy. I can happily watch comedies with him and to prove how great he can be, I, a teenage girl, watched Bridesmaids with him. Now that was an experience.

But sometimes, Dad (because I know you are reading this), watching films with you can go downhill. The first of your faults is that, apart from in comedies, at every touching moment – for everyone else, that can be from an emotional chat to a full on sex scene – you turn to me, cover your eyes and squeal lines such as, ‘Don’t look!’ to ‘My eyes!’. 

Issue number two: talking. For those of you out there who might be puzzled about this, I don’t mean just random chatter. No, I mean that during films my Dad sometimes assumes that the rest of us can’t read, so he helpfully reads out any words that pop up onto the screen. This could be the opening lines but last week we watched a film where the main character exited a taxi and my Dad felt the need to read out ‘taxi’, just in case we couldn’t read the massive lettering on the side of the car. 

Now my Dad isn’t the only one who sometimes has his faults when watching films. Next on my list: my brother. Four years older than me, my big brother has four more years of extra knowledge and, as a medical student, his brain is packed full with useful, and useless, facts. When watching a film, anything medical related then he will have to point out how inaccurate it is and further explain what it should be. Nice to know, bro, but I really don’t want to know. 

To be fair, I’m sure my family has a list of reasons why I’m an awful film companion as well, but if they want to rant about it then they’ll just need to start up their own blog. 

Thanks for reading, it’s been an honour ~Eleanor


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