How to Survive an All Night Movie Marathon

Selfies after each film at the Prince Charles Cinema’s Christmas Movie Pyjama Party

All film lovers at some point in their fandom have embraced an all-nighter. I myself frequently put on sequel after sequel, especially when I’m sick; there is nothing that can cheer me up more than watching the Beverly Hills Cop trilogy in one sitting.

Living in London, there are obviously movies being made left right and centre, and huge premieres happening in Leicester Square most weeks, so it really is a film fans’ mecca. Best of all is the huge variety of cinemas you can attend: outdoor ones in the summer, themed theatrical productions in bizarre locations, and small independents with plush seats and mulled wine at Christmas. I’ve written before about the Prince Charles Cinema and how it is my favourite cinema in the city. Their Pyjama Parties are now legendary, with people queueing around the block to spend twelve hours watching a handpicked selection classics. I’ve been to one Pyjama Party before, so now I’ve been to two I count myself a bit of a pro and know exactly how to do one properly. So here are my top tips on how to survive an all-night movie marathon:

1) Actually take pyjamas
You’re going to be sat down for twelve hours, so you want to be comfortable. You’re actually likely to be in the minority if you’re sat there in jeans!

2) Bring your sleeping bag along
Or a blanket – just something to snuggle up in and be comfortable.

3) Snacks are your friend
The PCC are great and let you bring in your own food (as long as it’s not hot) for these sleepovers. We take everything from sugary treats to sausage rolls and crisps. Everything to cure our cravings and keep us awake!

4) Take a big bottle of water
Stay hydrated. If I watch a screen for too long I get a headache so water is essential for me. You can also buy tea and coffee from the cinema shop. Loads of people take Red Bull too, although that’s not for me!

5) Don’t be afraid to sleep
It’s near on impossible to stay awake throughout the whole night. I normally pick one film in the middle that I don’t mind having a quick kip through!

6) Take a break
In between each film, step outside for a stretch or a wee. Just getting away from your seat makes you feel a bit more human.

7) Stretch out when you get the chance
After around three or four films, people start to jack it in and head home. Make the most of this and grab an extra seat for yourself; it makes it so much more bearable when you can lie across a couple of seats for half an hour.

8) Don’t be precious about the films
These events are for hardcore film fans. This means people shout out during their favourite bits, quote along  and generally cause a mini ruckus when their favourite bits come on. You’ll want to do it too!

9) Arrive prepared
Don’t worry about people looking at you on the tube in your pjs. The queue for the loos (for women especially) is really long when everyone comes in and you risk missing the first film as you wait to get changed.

10) Pick your seat!
Seats are unallocated for this, so decide where you want to be. I prefer to be a few rows from the back and not too far from the aisle so I can get out easily whenever I want to. Have a seat in mind and head there asap!

You can see the timetable for everything coming up at The Prince Charles Cinema, and I’ll no doubt see you at one of their fab screenings in the new year!

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