Going to the movies is a great experience. You can completely immerse yourself in a film while munching on sweet and salty snacks. However, it can get expensive –– and given the pandemic –– may not be a viable option. Luckily it’s easy to stream your favorite movies, and even new movies, from home. By planning ahead and getting a little creative with your movie night ideas, you won’t have to sacrifice a bit of the experience.
Below, we offer a few ideas to inspire you to turn your home into a theater. We also offer specific tips and tricks for those looking to host a particular type of movie night:
Finally, when you’re ready to send out your movie night invites, we’ve got you covered. Use our customizable move ticket templates to create your own tickets.
Creating the ultimate movie night at home just takes a little prep work. Below we offer ideas for how you can host the perfect movie night from creating a theme to preparing some traditional movie snacks.
First things first, decide what kind of movie night you want to host and who you want to invite.
What will you be showing at your movie night? Depending on what set up or subscriptions you have, you can stream thousands of movies from romance to comedy using services such as Netflix, Hulu, HBO and Amazon Prime.
A movie night is a great excuse to get dressed up. Just because you’re not going out, doesn’t mean you can’t get all dolled up or put together a fun costume! If you’re having a date night, consider suggesting that you and your date dress as if you were meeting out for a night on the town. Depending on what movie you choose, you can also suggest your guests dress for a certain theme.
Here are a few movie night theme ideas:
If you plan ahead of time to attend an event, normally you would purchase a ticket to present upon arrival. To make your movie night that much more authentic, consider sending tickets to your guests and asking that they bring them to present the night of the show.
See our section “Design Custom Movie Tickets” to make your own custom movie tickets to send to your guests.
Now it’s time to create a home movie theater that will wow your guests. Consider lighting, seating and decor to make the night feel authentic.
Holiday lights aren’t just for holidays! Create an illuminated aisle that resembles an aisle in a theater with string lights.
Make sure your guests stay comfy. Extra blankets and pillows are always a good idea, especially if you’ll be hosting an outdoor movie night where the temperature might drop.
Do you know why we eat popcorn at the movies? Before movies added sound in 1927, you needed to be highly educated with the ability to read in order to attend. Not until the experience became more accessible did theaters begin opening up to the idea of having food. Popcorn was the initial snack offered to theater goers as audiences during The Great Depression were looking for something cheap to purchase and vendors to yield a high profit margin.
Now that you know why popcorn is so intertwined with movie going, you likely recognize that serving popcorn at your movie night is a must! This classic movie snack will make your guests feel like they are truly at the movies.
You can also create your very own concession stand by displaying a few different candy options as well as drinks, such as soda or lemonade.
It’s the evening of your movie night! Time to dress up, put the food out and prepare to welcome your guests to your curated movie night experience.
To make the experience more fun, play ticket collector and ask your guests to present the tickets you sent them!
Give your guests some built in time to refill their drinks and snacks and use the bathroom without missing a minute of the movie.
For more specific movie night ideas, such as for a date or family movie night, check out our additional tips below.
A movie night at home is a pretty classic date night. Consider the tips below for how you can spice up your movie date night.
It’s hard to go wrong with a rom-com, and there are so many sensational romantic comedies to choose from. Here are a few ideas:
Creating a romantic evening at home is all about setting the mood. You can light candles for mood lighting and a relaxing scent. Play music before the movie starts, and if you really want to go all out, toss some rose petals on the floor and around the area you’ll be sitting.
In addition to popcorn, you can also go with some more traditionally romantic bites, such as strawberries and champagne. Pro tip: Also have chocolate!
As the night goes on, the air may be cooling off, but that doesn’t mean your date night has to. Have a blanket that you and your date can share to ensure your date night only keeps heating up.
If you’re looking to do more than snack and actually want to pair the movie with dinner, consider these movie night dinner ideas inspired by traditional movie theater eats. Plus, if you have a dietary restriction (e.g., vegan, gluten free), this could be an opportunity to make versions of these classic movie theater bites that you can enjoy!
Grab a bun and a hot dog, and smother with chili. You can also top with onion and cheese. Serve with fries!
Yes, nachos can be dinner –– if you add enough toppings! Add some or all of these ingredients: meat, corn, black beans, onion, guac, salsa, cilantro, jalapeños and sour cream.
Pizza is always a good –– and easy –– option. Use a store-bought crust or make your own at home, add your favorite toppings and throw it in the oven.
Have one or a few flavors of milkshakes ready to pour. Strawberry, chocolate and vanilla are all great options. If you also plan to serve candy at your movie night, you can top off any milkshake with your guests’ favorites.
If you have an outdoor space you can turn into a theater, this is a great movie night option. Outdoor movie nights can be fun for the family, friends or even a romantic evening.
Using a projector is a great way to display your movie on a larger screen. However, projectors can be expensive. If you don’t already own one, you might consider renting. FunFlicks helps you find projector and screen rental locations near you.
In addition to using them to create an illuminated aisle, you can also hang string lights to create an atmosphere. Depending on where you set up your screen, you can hang lights from your balcony, deck or nearby trees.
Provide lawn chairs that recline for your guests to watch the movie comfortably.
This is particularly important if you don’t have enough lawn chairs for everyone! Put blankets and pillows on the ground for guests to sit on and use to keep warm.
If you have young kids, they’ll like appreciate you going the whole nine yards to really recreate that movie night experience. Consider the tips below to help you create a night they will remember.
Build a pillow fort with the kids where they can watch the movie from. A pillow fort can add an extra layer of adventure to your family movie night.
Turn cardboard boxes into mini cars! Fashion a steering wheel to the inside the box, draw headlights onto the front of the box and cut out windows on the sides! If you’re able to, showing your movie outdoors is a great way to really recreate the feel of a drive-in movie for the kids.
Use a caddy or small box to create a snack tray that the kids can fill up with their favorite snacks to carry over to where you will be showing the movie.
Keep the kids engaged by pairing with another activity such as a craft or game. For example, if you’re watching a movie about animals, provide some animal-themed coloring sheets.
It’s time to send your movie night invites! For added fun and authenticity, send your guests tickets to bring to your event. We created three fun templates for you to choose from.
Fill out the form below to create your own personalized movie night ticket. Then choose one of the three themes and save your ticket! You can then print, email or text the ticket to your guest(s).
Fill out the following information to create your own personalized movie night tickets. Then choose from three themes and print or email your ticket!
Click your ticket to open in a new window. Then, right-click the image to save.
If you use your imagination and spend a little time planning, you can create the perfect movie night at home. An authentic movie night at home is an experience you and your guests will surely enjoy and remember.
For more movie night ideas check out the visual below.