I first noticed it when I was in Washington D.C. on my fantastic road trip across the states. Nick and I had decided to see Julia & Julia on a night out and found this sweet little theatre tucked away from everything else. We all piled into our seats and before we knew it we were laughing and crying and holding our breath all at the same time. Half way through, I realized what was happening. We were all experiencing the movie together at the same time. Reacting the same, maybe even thinking the same. After that I stopped watching the movie and starting watching the reactions of people I had never met before. I found it so refreshing and unifying to look left and see friends giggling to each other about one scene and looking right to see an elderly couple doing the same.
There may have been times in the past where I wanted to laugh until my sides begged me to stop, but felt shy at the thought of being the only one laughing in the theatre. But that night out was an awakening of what going to the movies could really be about. I left that theatre feeling connected with everyone that was there. We spilled out of the doors all laughing and recalling our favourite scenes and hearing other people wonder the same things you were wondering throughout the whole movie.
The same thing happened this week when Nick and I went to the movies. I found myself forgetful of this earlier experience from last summer and was happy to have it grace my life once again. Sitting there in the dark listening to teenage boys make fun of some cheesy scene behind us and listening to a bunch of girls in front of us do the same. Hearing everyone gasp at the jump-out-at-you scenes and whisper to each other what they think is going to happen next. I found myself reliving that moment in D.C. and gratefully sitting back and enjoying the company as well as the show. How cool is that? To be tied to a complete stranger by a movie?
Granted, it's not as if I'll ever likely see the people I watch movies with again. but for a couple of hours we were all in sync with each other. and I find myself imagining what life would be like if we felt like this about other people all the time.