A cinematic experience

I’ve always loved going to the movies every since I was a child, it filled me with excitement and a sense of ease and what I once saw as an activity I now see as a relaxing outlet. The tantalising aroma of my personalised brand of cinema heroine ‘Popcorn’, in a room crowded with like-minded people who are in that moment instantly recognised as ‘my’ people (especially when it comes to the Marvel films) and the one place I actually enjoy sitting through 15 minutes of commercials and movie trailers. Having said this being told your next task it so watch a movie, well lets just say ill take one for the team.

Upon initiating the outing to go to the cinemas with my friends, well that where I was met with some road bumps. In the 1960’s Swedish geographer, Torsten Hägerstrand created ‘Time geography’. This identified constraints preventing people moving and acting freely in their day-to-day lives. These constraints included:

  • Coupling constraints
  • Capability constraints
  • Authority constraints

Each of these explores the limitations that impact social planning, decisions we make and our capability to perform or attend and activity.

Coupling constraints
I have always gone to the movies with friends or family and unfortunately syncing up my schedule with that of my friends proved to be challenging and impossible. Usually my friends and I would have had it preplanned the entire night more often then not going out for dinner before had, making a quick trip into Woolworth’s to grab snack and then head on over to the movies.

I always felt it more normal to go with friends not only so that I won’t look like a loner but also for company and that it perhaps keeps me from getting distracted? From past experiences of watching movies at home alone I tend to multitask when doing so rather than focusing on the movie and felt that sitting in a cinema alone for an extended period of time I might get bored, but maybe that’s me trying to talk myself out of going alone.

Authority constraints
Being a uni student whenever I have any assignments or work that needs to be done I constantly feel guilty if I go out for leisure when I know I could be doing more important things. This constant nagging of ‘is it really ok for me to go?’ is one of the major reasons I usually turn down an invitation. Along with this being a student I am characteristically in constant need of money and no matter how much I try not to spend any money on unnecessary things, going to the movies guarantees I will be spending close to $40 for a ticket, drink and popcorn, an instant blow to my bank account (K.O)

Aside from this there is also the guild factor, when knowing that a friend wanted to see a movie together despite not having a compatible schedule do I still go and see it alone without them? And isn’t going alone a bit strange? Pushing this aside I decided to go regardless, after all it was for uni, right?

Capability constraints
Capability isn’t really an issue for me, I live a 10-minute drive from the closest cinema and since I have a car of my own I am free to go when I wish. The only think that would really interfere in my going would have been if my family needed my car or if it was in some way damaged.

All in all going alone was more of an experience that I though it would be. I had gone to watch Antman and since it had been out for so long I was alone, just me myself and another one of marvels greats creations. And although I enjoyed the experience and would go again I did catch myself checking my phone a few times, which I never do in a cinema but regardless the once daunting prospect of going alone was in a was empowering and I would definitely not be apposed to doing it again.


Corbett, J 2001, ‘Torsten Hagerstrand: Time Geography’, Center for spacially Intergrated Social Science, viewed 30th August 2015 <http://www.csiss.org/classics/content/29&gt;


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