Best of... Films

If you’re a Carrie Bradshaw fan, the term ‘SSB’ may ring a bell. It stands for Secret Single Behaviour. And mine began in my early twenties, in my defiant single phase when I refused to miss out on the latest film releases because there was no one else to go with me! There is something about the cinema that is distinctly couple-zoned. In fact, one of my first ever dates was to see Moulin Rouge at Bromley Cinema only for the film to break down halfway through, and my dramatic thirteen-year-old-self tore up the ticket, unfortunately meaning my date couldn’t get a refund. I think I was dumped by text later that night. Another cinema experience, I must have been under ten years old, and I went with a school friend (who was a boy) and his family. They drove me all the way to Bluewater only for me to have a meltdown in the queue and beg to be driven home.  Fast forward to University years and I freaked out about how serious a cinema date was that I convinced my date to forget it and grab a Burger King instead. So, as you can see from the track record, the cinema and my dating game hasn’t been the best of friends. But the lure of popcorn, comfy recliner seats and an excuse to be iPhone-free for a couple of hours is my favourite thing to do.

The first time I ever went to the cinema alone was to see Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part 2. I had been late to the whole Twilight Saga, being a defiant Harry Potter fan and thinking you could be one and not the other. However, after setting myself the task of reading all the books before I could see any of the films was the kind of single-girl challenge that I embraced. By the time I had finished though, either those that were fans had already seen it or my other friends just weren’t interested. I had no choice but to face my fear and cinema alone. As, by this time, only Leicester Square was showing the film, I decided to go big or go home. So a Friday night date for one, a large sweet popcorn in tow and I walked nervously into the cinema. Expecting to be pointed and laughed at like I had three heads, I was surprised to see so many other single seats occupied. I was not alone! This was a REVELATION!

Fast forward to 2019 and a Cineworld Unlimited Card in my possession, you can’t stop me from catching all the latest releases. Granted, my popcorn consumption is dangerously high but it’s worth it. I can further blame my “poor taste in films” (husband’s words, not mine) for why, since being together, we rarely watch a film together at the cinema. Instead, we will walk to the cinema together and then veer off in separate directions to different screens. Whilst he watches the latest blood-slaughtering, prison-gang violent film that would have me tense for the whole two hours, I’m watching a lighter-than-life Nora Ephron style movie and we both emerge happy! 

Top 3 Films from 2019

So here’s a celebration of my not-so-Secret Single Behaviour of cinema-tripping alone and my recent favourite films: 

Rocketman | I literally had the biggest grin on my face during this entire film and emerged Elton John’s newest fan. Taron Egerton played a huge part in that! In fact, having seen this in May, Rocketman became my most-played album on Spotify in 2019. I loved everything about this film but literally, that skippy-happy feeling walking home with ‘I’m still standing…’ buzzing in my ears makes this hands-down my favourite film of 2019. 

Judy | Same genre but distinctly sadder, Renee Zellweger’s performance as Judy Garland was as award-worthy as it is acclaimed. I didn’t know much about Judy Garland’s years post-Wizard of Oz so found it incredibly sad to follow. The music and outfits and London-based setting was gorgeous. Testament to the storytelling and performances was the fact that not a soul moved in the cinema for a good two minute after the end credits started. It literally felt like we were all taking a minute of silence to mourn. 

Joker | Now this one I did actually see with Mr A and it took some persuading for me to agree to go (I'm not a fan of the Batman or any Marvel film to be honest!) However, this was a game-changer. Joaquin Phoenix puts in the most incredible performance and you literally get sucked into his world of mis-treatment on his journey to morphing into the Joker. I would watch this again for sure!

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