Girls On Film

This week sees the release of Jon Spira’s awesome ROCKUMENTARY (sorry) about the rise of the Oxford music scene, Anyone Can Play Guitar. Full of interviews, tunes and untold tales of the highs and lows of the past 30-odd years, Radiohead, Supergrass, Foals, Talulah Gosh and chums will be gracing screens across the country on a tour of rockin’ little cinemas throughout November.

Anyone Can Play Guitar

Anyone Can Play Guitar

You absolutely MUST catch it (also showing at the brilliant Prince Charles Cinema in London on Dec 1st ) – not least because Crumpet’s real life human name will flash before your very eyes in the credits (WOO, btw). Anyway all of this glamourous Hollywood excitement made us think about films, and cinemas, and, of course, boys.

BUT WAIT! We’re a whole year old now. So we get to do things in a more exciting way round here.

Have a read. Share YOUR cinematic stories of love, regretful movie-dates, the tale of the time you met That Guy From That Film,  or your best popcorn-in-bra moment below in the comments, and the director of Anyone Can Play Guitar will pick his favourite – AND AWARD YOU AN AMAZING CINEMA POSTER (If we’re very nice to him, he might even sign it for you too.



He’ll ALSO chuck in a very cool Anyone Can Play Guitar branded plectrum.



I bloody love films. My heaving bookshelves are rammed with pretentious French surrealist cinema, David Lynch classics, 60’s mod-ish gems, and Cool Runnings (well OBVIOUSLY). I love the ceremonial nature of going to the cinema. The purchasing of a paper ticket to keep in your purse to remember the occasion by. The absolutely impossible choice of what snacks to consume. Choosing seats. Swathes of red curtains. The way you have to carefully consider in advance what you will have with you because there is never ever an adequate way to deal with storing your coat, scarf, handbag, eBay package you had delivered to your office for ‘convenience’ and the shopping you forgot you needed to take home from the fridge at work.

The cinema is the classic date scenario, isn’t it. Back row smooches. Fumbling to find hands to hold. Cock in the popcorn. Aah. I get totally sucked in to the cinema experience. All film-watching, really. I have a totally overactive imagination. When I saw Tintin last week I was the epitome of the 😀 emoticon smiley face throughout. When Tintin was in danger I scrunched my face up with my heart in my throat despite knowing the story inside and out since the age of 7. If I watch an older film, I end up confused about it not actually being 1960’s London when the credits roll, or that I don’t actually live in some strange American backwater town.

I actually find cinema dates a bit naff, socially and practically, despite loving the classic romance of the idea. You can’t chitchat, can’t press pause, if you stop for a smooch you miss approximately £1.25’s worth of viewing pleasure you’ve paid for, Orange Wednesday or not. Watching films at home though. Oh boy. I bloody love that. SNACKS. Endless snacking potential. PYJAMAS. Cosy blankets. Controllable lighting situations. Adjusting the volume. The fact that the film probably only cost you £3 from Amazon and it fills a space on your shelf. And when you’re done – WHY NOT WATCH ANOTHER ONE? Until you fall asleep, even! Brilliant. All of these things make home-date-film-time superior to cramped, separated-by-arm-rest-and-cup-holder cinema dates.

Film taste is quite a specific thing though, innit. Some people call my taste in films wanky. I just love having my brains stimulated by what I watch. An intellectual investment. I’ve got 5 years of art school education that I rarely get to excercise and will never finish paying for, so I bloody LOVE watching something that I want to talk about after, or tear apart with my mind coggs, or compare to a painting I’ve figured out it’s inspired by. Yes yes I’m a film twat. I’d rather have my eyeballs sparked with inspiration than sit mindlessly chuckling at slapstick and fart jokes.

I’m actually a bit rubbish to watch films with, I think, if you’re a boy. I vocalise my “oooooh”s and “eeeeps” and “OH thats like that bit in that OTHER film” and whatnot. I like a good discussion at the end. I like arguing about how brilliant or crap or contrived the story was.

I had a cinema date once to see a very popular film, not so long ago, that everybody was bloody raving about. Total hollywoodarama. Not my usual cup of tea but, you know, dates are sometimes about compromise or doing stuff you wouldn’t do usually. By the end, when it transpired that (predictably) I had hated it and my date had loved it, I ranted for a good 20 minutes about all of the old surrealist films – and more modern films – that it seemed to rip off. The flaws. The bits that gave me motion sickness. The books it had borrowed themes from. I properly went to town without gasping for breath, hoping this would be the start of a brilliant great lengthy discussion. My date responded with “well I suppose you’ve got a point, yeah”. Meh.


I’ve been sitting trying to write this for bloody ages…I thought it would be easy I LOVE films…I guess that’s the problem didn’t realise still I started writing what a big part of my life they are. I know people who just aren’t that into films, they might watch the occasional thing but they’re just not fussed. That confuses my tiny brain…My Mum says they are far-fetched nonsense. ‘BUT THAT’S THE POINT!!’ I wail at her. My Dad takes it to the other extreme and will happily stay up till three in the morning simultaneously watching two films at once.

When I was five three films had a major impact on me – Mary Poppins, D.A.R.Y.L and A Nightmare on Elm Street. The first I watched every single day after school, till I knew every word off by heart. The second I fell madly in love with the boy/robot and the third I watched unknown to my big sister as I was hiding behind the sofa and it pretty much scarred me for life.

For me I’m not just watching a film. I’m right there in it…For those 90 minutes or so they are completely real to me (Which is why I NEVER watch the special features on a DVD) I’m like one of those mentals that if I saw Daniel Radcliffe in the street I’d be all ‘Harry! Harry! How’s Ginny and the kids?!’ and I’d hug him really tight and he’d have to call the police. BUT HE IS A REAL WIZARD HE IS HE IS!!!

For me films are like a diary of my life, I remember when I was about 12 I got my own bedroom and with it my own TV. When I wasn’t watching Euro Trash with the sound down I was sitting wide-eyed watching films like Beetlejuice, The Dark Crystal, The Lost boys, Weird Science and some really dodgy late night Channel 4 ones. Then from 14 – 16 it was all about Johnny Depp and Brad Pitt. I remember in the height of my Johnny Depp phase I went to Malta to stay with family. My Uncle owned a video store and he let me take home to keep FOR REALS Benny and June, I was bloody ecstatic.

Then boys came along and watching films with boys and learning all about films from boys. There was the mod boy who introduced me to the delights of If, and A Clockwork Orange, Alfie (Caine not Law I walked out of that shit) Belle De Jour and Buxton and the Blue Cat. Or the strange boy who I’d haul up with all day watching Hell raiser (Like putting your fingers in a warm bowl of meat) Deliverance, Last House on the Left, loads of serial Killer biopics and Japanese nasties. We’d wander into the ‘World Cinema’ section of the library and grab what we could (The tit and the moon was brilliant)

Films bought us together, both friends and boyfriends…We’d watch and share the experience and quote them to death afterwards. Exciting first dates at the cinema or the excitement/annoyance of seeing another couple on a first date (fingering in the back row). The time me and my big sister went to see a film and I was in a wheelchair, she pushed me into the lift head first into an old mans crotch. The big OH MY GOD moment watching Sixth Sense before it got totally ruined.

I delight in swapping films with people like I used to delight in swapping Garbage Pail kid stickers…We’ll all haul round when we get together ‘Have you seen this??”Oh god you’ve got to see this!’ ‘You didn’t like it?? You’re a twat.’

What’s amazing for me now is getting to show my kids all the films I loved…I was overjoyed when they went through their Labyrinth phase and they’re just starting to understand the Goonies now. I delight in seeing their little eyes grow massive in a darkened cinema because I can see them making their own memories through film.

The first time I met Crumpet we went to see Jaws, it was the first time I met my Jason as well. Actually my favourite Cinema date was with Jason…We’d been doing a bit of flirting and had arranged a date but were both completely hapless…We met outside The Prince Charles Cinema in London (Which was dead exciting in itself as I’m not a London girl) It was three days before Christmas and we were off to see Home Alone. It was all cold and Christmasy and we sat down, I don’t remember watching the film at all, I just remember ‘Ooooh his leg just touched mine’ and ‘I wonder if he’ll hold my hand’ ‘Should I hold his hand??’ It was wonderful and exciting and I felt like I was 15 again. Now whenever I watch that film I’ll be reminded of this perfect first date.

Reading this post back it has no real flow, I’ve jumped from one thing to another and even as I’m sitting here I’m thinking about giggling with my big Sister whilst watching Wish you were here or watching the Green Mile with one of my besties and being utterly shocked when she burst into tears (She was normally such a cold fish) My favourite thing to do ever ever EVER is dinner and a film…I’m at my happiest now snuggled up with my boys watching something while we stuff our faces…Total contentment.

They’ve been a part of my life for as long as I can remember, book marking the chapters as I go along much the same as music does..Evoking emotions, making me think or letting me switch off completely. Teaching me life lessons, educating and inspiring me or making me laugh when I’ve had the shittiest day ever. Part of what makes Christmas so magical for me is the films I associate with it…It just wouldn’t be Christmas without Elf or It’s a Wonderful Life. My idea of indulgence is sneaking off to the cinema by myself and immersing myself in another world for 90 minutes. Story telling, it’s part of the wonder of life…I love having my brain filled up with stuff I could have only imagined and now I get to see it on a massive big screen with surround sound.

I saw an old couple at the cinema the other day, thoroughly enjoying themselves and I thought I have years and years of stories that I’m going to see and people I’m going to associate with them and I’m also sure there’s an OAP discount right? This makes me very very happy.

NOW all you have to do is comment below with your funny, sweet, sad or embarrassing film-related story for a chance to win a SIGNED FILM POSTER and super rockin’ PLECTRUM…

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12 Responses to Girls On Film

  1. My other half and I had to go to see “Kiss Of The Spider Woman” twice. Not that it was such a brilliant film or anything (although it is – Raul Julia, bless him and William Hurt are fabby) but because the first time we went, we went to the pub first, got rather pie-eyed and spent the whole film snogging (and more) in the back row. Friends kept asking us what the film was like and we kind of felt guilty that we hadn’t a clue so paid to see it a second time xxx

  2. lilmissmosher says:

    i dont think my nan managing to fall asleep during Evita despite it being bloody loud will count. or that i left my car lights on whilst in the cinema once and so i ended up with a flat battery and couldnt drive home after and did a cry and had to ring my mum. Balls.

  3. Tom Maybey says:

    Not long after me and my girlfriend started seeing eachother her mum came to visit. Her mum is Polish and doesn’t speak any english at all, so I raided my DVD collection for something with Polish subtitles that we could watch together.
    I chose Election, a great film that at that point I hadn’t seen in some years. We were all enjoying it until the moment that Matthew Broderick spends a while sitting on the side of a bath pleasuring himself. Oh. I forgot that bit.
    I was mortified. My girlfriend was looking at me really rather angrily. Her mum? She was in hysterics, firstly at the scene and secondly at my reaction to it.
    Next time she visited I made them watch The Wicker Man. That taught her.

  4. and_ says:

    The first date with my first love, we went to the cinema to see ‘Water World’ (a long long film if you don’t know, also has Kevin Costner as a fish-man-type-thing in it) we both sat there rigid with nervous first date fear half watching the film, occasionally exchanging nervous eye contact.I eventually i plucked up the courage to move my hand onto hers…we held hands for the whole film, both too scared to advance the situation further, something so taken for granted now was such a huge thing when young. As the film ended i turned to give a longing kiss, alas she wasn’t looking and i was met with very long straight hair sticking to my nervous face… i had failed in my attempt for a romantic movie kiss…i was gutted! later that week we did kiss, it was awkward, but it was the start of something lovely… 3 years later she ran off with someone else but we still remain friends to this day. *lights fade, credits roll x

  5. Reverend Studebaker says:

    I got a blow job in the cinema from my girlfriend once whilst sat next to my best mate n his better half. Apparently she wasn’t too interested in watching tin cup. Didn’t go all the way but it was fun nonetheless.

  6. alabama says:

    First thought that comes to mind is seeing films with my nan.

  7. Nikki says:

    OK here goes…American Beauty.

    1999 or 2000 I went on a date with Dan my boyfriend (now husband) and we had that uncontrollable bite-the-inside-of-your-lip to-try-and-stop fits of giggles at some poignant bit with the camcording of the bag blowing around in the wind (what was that about?).

    It was two days earlier I had spied him from the opposite side of the Blackstock Road waiting for me, when a carrier bag got whipped up in a gust of wind and blew it straight into his kisser and the hapless chap wrestled the damn thing for a few good long embarrassing seconds before being able to separate himself from the offending article. It still makes me snigger to this day.

    We were not popular during that performance at the Camden Odeon that night.

  8. I cleverly went to see The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas on a date once. I won’t administer any spoilers, but yeah, that film goes heart-wrenchingly depressing at the end, and I had NO IDEA it was coming. I’m not sure uncontrollably sobbing is the most attractive look.

    I’d been dating that girl for a while by then, so it wasn’t the complete disaster it could’ve been, but still.

  9. alabama says:

    Whoops…posted by accident. She bloody loves the cinema. I saw so many films with her when I was little, she even tried to sneak us into Batman, but we got busted. This was in the days of queueing round the block and ice-cream in the interval! She isn’t your typical nan coz she really loved Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels. Bless her. But, I’ve moved away so I don’t get to go with her much these days. So, when she said she really wanted to see Mamma Mia and had no one to go with, I went. The film is flipping awful, Pierce Brosnen what were you thinking?! I endured Itfor my dear old nan. so, when at the end she turned around and said ‘Ooo, this is mine and your sister’s favourite bit’ many many swear words were stifled and I learnt never to under estimate my nan’s love of Abba!

  10. Emily says:

    On a day trip out with one of my friends, we were both feeling a little hungover when she pointed out that there was only RON WEASLEY near us. We ran up to him giggling and asked for a photo to be taken with him, and then ran away. He looked both 1. Scared (we were both taller than him) 2. Dazed (we arrived and disappeared in a fit of giggles) and 3. Very confused (two girls in their twenties going on about Ron). We spent the rest of the day in a shocked silence apart from a few fits of giggles from having met Ron!xx

  11. My mother named me after Holly Golightly in Breakfast at Tiffanys. I think she really just wanted to be Audrey Hepburn, understandably. My mother died when I was fifteen and I had never watched the film with her. I wish I had. I understand why she named me Holly and I feel so connected to the film it almost makes me cry just thinking about it. And of course I cry just thinking about how ridiculous Mickey Rooney is in it.

  12. culturebadger says:

    One time my dad took me to see the Matrix. The lady behind the counter started selling us the tickets; then he tried to get a child’s discount stating that I was 14, I was actually 15, the film was a 15, they wouldn’t let us in.

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