I could probably write a very long list of things I have been disappointed to miss out on over the last few years, and many of them will be much more important in the grand scheme of things – trips with the kids I have missed out on, date nights with my husband I have cancelled etc – but the one thing really getting to me at the moment is being unable to get to the midnight showing of Avengers: Endgame, the night it opens.
Why is this a big deal? Most people don’t go to midnight showings, what difference will it make to wait until later that day? I can avoid spoilers by avoiding the internet for the day (hahahahaha), why am I feeling so gutted about not being able to go to that showing?
There are two reasons, one based on why I actually want to go and the other based on the constant battle to let go of what I used to be able to do, and the reality of what I can do now.
So why do I want to go? As mentioned in a previous post, I am a massive movie fan, I always have been. I watch as many movies as I can fit into my day, have them on in the background whilst I am working or hanging out in the house, have them on my iPad in the bathroom whilst I shower and spend some of my downtime reading about them, subscribing to Empire magazine and regularly picking up others. I grew up with a TV and VCR in my room from an early age and was always watching something, with horror being my top choice and sci fi/fantasy/action probably a close second. Movies, and the love of them, feel like a key part of me.
Going to the cinema has long been a favourite pastime of mine, one which I haven’t done as much as I would have liked over the past few years, between babies / the illness but it is one of my priorities when I am feeling well enough and can find the time. There is something special about seeing a movie surrounded by other people all enjoying (or not) the same thing and in the world of smartphones it’s nice to be forced to put it down and give 100% attention to the movie.
Over the last 10 years I have enjoyed every one of the MCU movies (ok with the slight exception of Iron Man 2) and some of the movies have become firm favourites, watched over and over again. Infinity War inparticular has been watched at least weekly for the last few months and after finally seeing Captain Marvel last week my excitement for Endgame has peaked. It’s the culmination of 10 years of fantastic storytelling and entertainment and I am desperately trying to avoid trailers to go in as blind as possible.
So what’s the big deal about a midnight showing? Looking back on my favourite cinema going experiences, they have always involved being in a screening with people truly excited to be there, and no one goes to a midnight screening of they aren’t 100% dedicated. The atmosphere is electric, here are several 100 people up way past their bedtime, absolutely desperate to see the movie that is about to start. Reactions are louder, people are laughing, crying, gasping much more openly. Your neighbour, who you would usually be sat as far away from as possible and in truly British style making sure you don’t accidentally make eye contact with, becomes someone you suddenly feel comfortable interacting with, looking at each other in moments of shock – you are all in this together.
My absolute favourite midnight showing experience was seeing The Cabin In The Woods, a horror film (kind of) which has become one of my all time favourite movies. It was at the end of the an all weekend horror film festival in Edinburgh and the audience were just wonderfully involved in the whole thing. Everytime I watch the movie now I remember the big laughs that some lines got, lines that wouldn’t necessarily have had an impact on the audience if I had seen it at another time of day, without an audience who loved horror and truly GOT this movie.
I can only imagine the atmosphere in that midnight showing of Endgame and what an experience it would be, and I am gutted not to be a part of that.
The other thing bothering me is the constant battle between what I used to be able to do, and what I can currently do. To be fair what I can currently do varies from hour to hour, day to day, week to week but missing a night of sleep isn’t something I can risk no matter how good I am feeling at the time, and getting used to that feeling of restriction, of knowing this is something I CAN’T do is something I am still coming to terms with.
Having said all that, there are people with this illness who are bedbound and can only dream of going to the cinema, at any time of day, so I will be grateful for the fact I will be seeing the movie at all and I’m pretty sure even at the evening showing, there are going to be plenty of people extremely excited to be there 😁