Watching Black Panther at the cinema in 2018 was a highlight in 2018TWITTER/COLLIDERFROSTY

Incredible. Watching Black Panther in the cinema felt... incredible. Deep cushioned seats, cavity-inducing popcorn laced with Candy King Pick n’ Mix. All the Stars by Kendrick and SZA filling the cinema, each speaker pumping out good vibrations, little kids chanting “Wakanda” in their parents’ ears. The only word I can use to describe a physical trip to the cinema is: incredible.

Every time I walk out of the theatre, whether I’ve just watched an action-packed Marvel movie or something more emotional like Theodore Melfi’s Hidden Figures (2017), I’m always left with an unforgettable feeling. Sometimes it’s almost as if I were part of the cast myself — after every Nancy Meyers movie I feel as if I’ve transformed from a stressed nineteen-year-old to a divorced middle-aged woman, ready to restart her life.

“Cinemas provide an enchanting level of comfort, allowing complete immersion in what is happening on-screen.”

This transformation process is a quintessential component of what I view as "cinema magic". Cinemas provide an enchanting level of comfort, allowing complete immersion in what is happening on-screen. The very experience is enlightening, and it's something I greatly miss during lockdown. I crave the unparalleled feeling of settling into those deep seats, ruining my dental hygiene with sugar and popcorn. However, "necessity is the mother of invention". Many of us have had to adjust our lives in a way we never imagined possible because of this pandemic, so why should cinema be any exception?

The magic of film is not reserved just for the theatres.

If you’ve got some spare cash, try purchasing a mini projector. They aren’t overly expensive, with the smaller, more portable options costing around £30. If you were to splash out on one of the more powerful models, you could certainly count it as a good investment for another lockdown. Drape an old sheet (preferably, white) over a bare wall and set the projector on a nearby table. Better yet, use your textbooks to adjust its height, so the screen aligns perfectly. If you can’t get hold of a projector, try propping up your laptop on your desk or, if you have access to a TV, use an HDMI cable to connect the screen.

Portable projectors can be utilised to set up a home cinemaTWITTER/VANKYOOFFICIAL

Turning off your lights will help replicate the atmosphere of emerging from the darkness after a life-changing viewing. For an indie, romantic, or any coming-of-age film, try hanging some fairy lights around the room to help create a more cinematic ambience. The low lighting will help shift the focus from your familiar surroundings to the story. For better sound quality, try connecting your speakers to your laptop and placing them slightly away from you, on the most comfortably high setting. This way, the sound will fill the room in a similar way to surround speakers in a cinema.

Now for the seating! Ensure you gather all the pillows you possibly can and place them onto your designated seat, whether it be a bed, couch, or the floor. Once you are done, use a spare blanket to cover the cushion, tucking in the edges to replicate the soft-lined cinema seats.

Cinema closures have led people to get creative in order to replicate the cinema experience at homeTWITTER/MISSDEPOTTS

Why not be boujee? You might think of dressing up in your finest cinema outwear, if only to shake off the dust in the closet. Personally, for maximum comfort, I would opt for your softest loungewear. My go-to fashion choice during every lockdown has always been my cosy (if slightly traitorous) Harvard hoodie and an old pair of PE tracksuit bottoms.

“Try hanging some fairy lights around the room to help create a more cinematic ambience.”

Once your setup has been perfected, grab a bowlful of your favourite snack and a frozen Capri Sun (i.e. an easy homemade solution to a Tango Ice Blast). If you want to go the extra mile, you could even venture into the world of Pinterest to source the perfect recipe for cinema nachos.

Armed with snacks aplenty and your makeshift home theatre, I’m certain that as soon as you hit play, the sublime feeling of cinema magic is sure to envelop you. At least this way, we can still enjoy new releases while counting down the days until we can recline back in those deep, cushioned seats.


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