How to Plan the Perfect Family Movie Night

How to Plan the Perfect Family Movie Night

Try these ideas for a unique and terrific movie night at home the entire family can enjoy.


These days, a family outing to the movies costs a small fortune, so why not try a memorable movie night at home? Use these simple tips to make the evening fun for everyone.

Pick a Flick
To avoid family squabbles before the movie even starts, create a rotating list of who gets to choose the movie on each particular day. That person presents her top three choices and leaves it up to the rest of the brood to decide the winner. When it’s your turn, consider movies from your childhood. If it was a blockbuster that had a remake, it’ll be a hoot for the kids to see the original version. You might even consider a back-to-back double feature with old and new!

Choose a Theme
Once the film choice is set, capitalize on the theme with off-screen elements. Watching a pirate flick? Have the kids make paper hats and apply temporary tattoos with skull and crossbones. Alien adventure? Spray everyone’s hair green (Temporary color washes out with your next shampoo.). Superhero flick? Have each family member decide on their hero name, and then cut out large letters that stand for their names to pin to the fronts of everyone’s shirts.

Select the Snacks
Create healthier versions of movie house favorites: Instead of butter, dust popcorn with smoky paprika or dill and onion powder. Another crunchy winner: Spread canned chickpeas on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and bake until crispy.

For a snazzy sweet, scoop ice cream into balls on waxed paper. Insert wooden craft sticks and place back in the freezer. Melt a few squares of dark chocolate and crush up candies on wax paper. Dip your pops in the chocolate then roll in the candies. Put back in the freezer until chocolate hardens. You can substitute marshmallows for ice cream if you like.

Do a Review
Here’s everyone’s chance to be a movie critic. When the movie finishes, have everyone talk about his or her favorite characters and the best (and worst) moment of the flick. And, of course, whether they give it a thumbs up or a thumbs down. This quick activity encourages thoughtful viewing and boosts self-esteem since even the littlest movie-watchers get to voice their opinions.

The More the Merrier
If your neighbors have kids around the same age, consider a backyard movie-night block party. You can all chip on to rent a projector and a large collapsible screen and set up lawn chairs and blankets. Have everyone bring an easy dish or snack and once the summer sun has set, play the movie!

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