When I heard that baby friendly screenings were kicking off at the Trinity Theatre I was rather excited. Another activity to add to my ever growing arsenal of fun-things-to-do-with-the-baby in Tunbridge Wells, to stop me sitting at home in my PJs all morning and eating Sunday night's really rather dry left over take away rice for breakfast and wondering how the hell I'm going to survive a whole new day ahead on 4 hours of broken sleep.
10.15am, 4 nappy changes later and a quick sniff to see if the top I'm wearing doesn't smell too much of baby sick and I'm hot footing down the hill towards the theatre. I approach with trepidation as we are in the midst of one of those glorious 'wonder week leaps' combined with a growth spurt and a sea of 12 week post partum hormones in tow. Needless to say, I wasn't holding out much hope of making it past the 10 minute mark before disgracing ourselves and having to exit the cinema with a screaming bubba and dodging a load of sshhhing and scornful looks from cinema goers wanting to see if those Ghostbusters really ain't afraid of no ghosts...
I must admit my attention span has decreased to 3 minute windows since having Maggie so thankfully I was asked to review the experience rather than the film itself. So if you're looking for an Empire magazine style review of the movie then stop right here and read, well, Empire magazine. From what i can gather from the 134min viewing, there was slime, a marshmallow man, the hilariously funny Melissa McCarthy and Chris Hemsworth looking seriously hot in a pair of fake glasses.
The screenings are for parents/carers/grandparents to bring babies under 12 months. The lights are slightly brighter so you can see what you are doing if you need to feed or change your bubba and they kindly let you park your buggy at the front of the screen, so if you are blessed with a baby who likes to nap (unlike me), you can strategically place yourself and your sleeping baby in a decent place whilst you enjoy the film. Of course, as soon as the film started, Maggie kicked off but no one seemed to mind as I soothed her at the side of the theatre... I was surprised at how well behaved the other babies were with little to no crying, they were clearly mesmerised by the big screen.
Perhaps Ghostbusters was a little too action packed for a baby screening as there were quite a lot of loud noises - I'm assured the sound levels will be turned down a little more for next time, but it didn't seem to bother the babies. Maybe I am ultra sensitive to anything waking up this little one once I finally get her off for a snooze. That said, the loudness managed to disguise the ginormous poop explosion Maggie had halfway through, requiring an entire outfit change (luckily I still had a the previous day's dress in my changing bag that she'd only peed on) - next time I think they will have some changing mats along the sides so you don't have to leave the auditorium. All in all it was a brilliant experience and a great opportunity to get together with my Mama friends and sit in front of the big screen, rather than the ipad screen.
Even though I couldn't really tell you what happened in the film as I think my eyes glazed over 10 mins in (not through boredom, but exhaustion) it was 100 times better than watching The Wheels on The Bus on repeat all morning. I would highly recommend going along to the next one, which I believe will be The Meddler. I so hope they will be showing Bad Moms at some point as that is a film I am sure I'll be able to identify with! Afterwards, the lovely Laura and Natalie from Mum's the Word set up a baby friendly area for post film playtime and refreshments. It's so brilliant we have activities like these available to us in Tunbridge Wells. I think I've made more friends in the 3 months living here than 12 years living in London! Here's to the next one... we'll see you there!
Katy & Maggie xx @mrskatybaker