Family Movie night is one of the easiest ways to have a fun evening indoors. It’s cheap, too,
with all of the “free” (you pay for the subscription) streaming options. Movie night checks all the
boxes for a low key night of family fun. But it doesn’t have to be your basic viewing party. It can
be so much more. If you are looking to jazz up a humdrum movie night into a memorable
evening that just happened to include a feature presentation, here are some helpful tips for
elevating family movie night into one of your most successful events of the year.
Family Movie Night Inspiration For The Ultimate Evening
Theme the Night
Make family movie night more immersive by theming your surroundings to the film you chose. Add decor that evokes some of the movie’s locations. style your living room to have European
or Asian flair. Put up some movie posters. They can either be posters for the movie or posters
related to the movie. What other movies were released at the same time? What genre is it? Are
any movies featured or referenced within the movie? For example: If you’re watching Gremlins,
why not hang a poster of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs on the wall? Or pick other movies
that were filmed on the same sets in the Universal backlot.
Pick a Terrible Movie
One counter-intuitive way to approach family movie night is to watch a truly bad movie. It does
have to be watchable, but merely mediocre doesn’t cut it. Shoot for the so-bad-it’s-good type of
movie. Creature features are a good bet as long as they meet other family-viewing criteria. The
idea here is that if you’re not totally engrossed in the film, you are interacting and sharing the
experience more with your family. The dialogue you can spark while half paying attention to a
cheesy flick can make for a much more engaging family movie night.
Make it a Scheduled Event
Another way to amp up the proceedings is to structure the evening with more than just gathering around the couch with a tub of popcorn and pressing play. Include preliminary events and post-viewing events to fill out the evening even more. Have a soft start time in which you play ambient bonus material related to the movie. This can set the mood and extend the fun of the evening. It also provides an opportunity to add any finishing touches to dinner or wait for the related games. Take a cue from the cast of MST3K and use direct inspiration from the film to
throw a small after-party if you are making dinner, why not tie in the meal with the film. Make your dinner a reference to a key scene in the movie, or a play on the film’s location.
Move it Outdoors
Speaking of location, why not take your movie night on location. Particularly if Family movie
night includes friends, neighbors, or family from out of town. Turn movie night into an outdoor
event, by projecting the film on a screen in your yard. You can even use your garage and turn
movie night into a Drive-in Theater simulated experience.
What ideas do you have for family movie night?
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