Going to the movies is by far my favorite pastime.
I try to go to a movie theater at least once a week. Sometimes I’ll go with friends, but I mainly prefer to go by myself. Anytime I mention the latter to someone it typically generates the same tilted-head response. Most people wouldn’t dare step foot into a movie theater without at least one other person and feel that it’s weird to go to the movies alone. One can only assume that this is because of the fear of being judged by other movie-goers.
Well, I’m here to do my best to remove this negative stigma and share 10 reasons you should be going stag to the movies.
10. You get to eat all the snacks
Order whatever you want. Popcorn? Go for it. Sour Patch Kids? Hell yeah. A large Sierra Mist to wash it all down? Done. It’s all yours. No awkward tilting of the popcorn bag towards your guest throughout the movie or passing it down the line of your friends needed. Wanna pour a bag of gummy worms inside your popcorn for a sweet and salty treat as you pull out fistfuls? Do it. No one is going to stop you from trying any weird concoction. Eat up.
9. Appearance isn’t a concern
Messy hair? Who cares? Don’t feel like putting on makeup? Go au naturel. Want to wear those old sweatpants that you love so much? Go right ahead. There’s no one to impress with jeans and other legitimate clothes when you’re sitting by yourself. Ever wanted to just go to the theater in a pair of pajamas? Now’s your chance. You’ll be comfortable as hell and you won’t be questioning if your outfit choice is an embarrassment to those around you. Just be careful not to dress too comfortably, you’re there to watch a movie, not to take a $20 nap.
8. You get both armrests/cup holders
No longer will you have to put your drink in the seat’s designated cup holder. This is especially helpful to the lefties. Put it on whatever side you want! And then you’ve got another empty one to put your keys, wallet, and cellphone in. No longer will you have to risk leaving your belongings on the seat as you walk out because they fell out of your pockets, or even worse, the dreaded phone hits the ground scenario. No one likes to fish around on a sticky theater floor for their phone in the middle of a movie. Lastly, if you want to play royalty and use both armrests to stretch out you won’t have to worry about sharing a common space and rubbing up against someone else.
7. You can pick any seat you want
It’s always easier to find a single seat than a group of 5. When you’re by yourself you can literally sit anywhere you want. If you like the acoustics in the middle, you can grab a seat in the middle. If you like to sit all the way up at the top, that’s not going to be a problem. And if you’re one of those weirdos that like sitting in the front row and breaking your neck the whole time because it makes you feel like you’re in the movie, go right ahead. Confidently buy that ticket without your friends getting pissed at your seat placement choice.
6. Better sound quality than your home set-up
Everyone knows that movies are meant to be experienced at full volume. When I watch a movie, I want to feel the movie. I want to be able to hear every explosion without having to worry that my neighbors are going to be annoyed by the volume. No matter how good your sound system may be at your house, it’s never going to compare to that of your local movie theater. This may not be a reason to go alone for a lot of people, but if you’re like me and you live alone, this still very much counts.
5. You can pick any showtime
Have you ever tried to coordinate a time that works for you and a group of friends? It’s the worst. Jim works that Tuesday, Pam only likes early afternoon showings, Dwight has to bathe his cat that night — alright, I guess we’ll go two weeks from now. If I want to see a movie, I want to see it when it works for me. I like going on opening nights which are typically a Thursday evening, If I’m going by myself I don’t have to worry that for others it’s a work night, I buy the ticket and go. Or if I want to go to a late-night showing I don’t have to worry about it being past my friend’s bedtime. I don’t typically go to matinee showings, but if I felt the desire I could just up and go, no harmonizing necessary. Beautiful.
4. Seeing guilty pleasure movies without judgment
We all have our guilty pleasure movies. For some, it’s the classic rom-com, for others it’s silly animated movies. For me, it’s dramas that will inevitably make me cry or horror movies that are basically considered gore porn. When you pick a movie to see by yourself you can confidently buy the ticket knowing that you will not be judged for your selection. If you want to let the waterworks loose in the theater without having to be self-conscious or you want to laugh at a Minion fart joke, you can happily go right ahead.
3. No one talks to you throughout the movie
There’s nothing I despise more while I’m trying to watch a film than someone interrupting it to tell me something. No witty comment is worth taking me out of the movie-going experience. When you’re sitting alone, you’ve got no one to lean over to you and warm-breath whisper some nonsense in your ear. It’s pure concentration bliss. If I wanted a commentary, I’d wait for the home release or I’d watch MST3000.
2. Formulating your own post-viewing thoughts
We’ve all gone to a movie with some friends and walked out of the theater to an opinion bombardment from someone in the group that absolutely hated the movie. In your head, you’re thinking “I actually thought it was pretty good” but as Ernie goes on rambling about how they thought the storyline was too simple, or Bert points out all the plot holes and the lack of character development, you start to question your initial opinions. When you go see a movie by yourself, you only have your judgment to base your thoughts on. You might not be as easily influenced as I am and might stand your ground against your friends, but it’s nice not to even have to go through the experience in the first place. That’s what Rotten Tomatoes and r/movies are for.
1. It instills the practice of independence
It’s not necessarily healthy to be dependent on other people and I am a firm believer that we could all stand to be more comfortable spending time with ourselves. In my opinion, it’s the best way to learn who you are as a person. We’ve all heard the saying “you need to love yourself before you can love others” and while this may not be entirely true, it’s still a good thing to practice. I’m not saying that you should be closed off from the world, but I am saying that there are advantages to doing things by yourself and you shouldn’t be self-conscious about doing so.
Give it a shot, you might enjoy it.