When I’m on a long haul flight, I typically indulge in a movie or two. Most of them are forgettable. In fact, I’d already forgotten the name of one of the movies I watched in-flight last month.
Then, there are films that leave me feeling confused. For example, Shape of Water. That film won an Oscar for Best Picture, so it’s got to be good, right? Spoiler alert: I’m not into sci-fi fantasy, but I could live with the film’s premise. I won’t lie: When the protagonist was consummating with her love interest (the fish alien) in the bathroom, I had a “What the hell am I watching?” moment.
That Darn Sappy Movie!
And then, there are those movies that you’d watch without any expectations. That was the case when I decided to watch The Fault In Our Stars on my flight back from Amsterdam.
I had been going through some things, and I didn’t want to watch anything too emotionally heavy. I wanted to watch something modern and light. The synopsis looked good, the film was principally shot in the Netherlands, and I thought it might be fun to try to see if I recognize some of the landmarks. Besides, the food service was about to start. I might as well watch something while I enjoy my meal.
Let me preface by saying that I’m not usually a crier when it comes to movies. There’s no shame in it if you are, but I’m not one of those people. Except maybe the Lion King.
What I didn’t know was that this movie had some major tearjerkers.
Keeping it Together
The film kept tugging at me in ways unexpected. Before I knew it, big fat tears rolled down my cheeks. I couldn’t stop them fast enough.
At least when you’re at the theaters, you could hide in the dark. On a plane and during a meal service, there’s nowhere to go. I felt so exposed. And then, there was another tearjerker scene. And in that stupidly emotional period in my life, I couldn’t help but tear up again. What the hell was wrong with me?
Yet, for one split second, I had an odd but slightly comforting thought:
Maybe the flight attendant thinks the on-board food is so bad that I’m crying over it. (At least that thought got me to crack a little smile).
I think I will skip the sappy movies and save them for at home or at the movies. For in-flight entertainment, I think I might be better off just sticking to funny sitcoms.
Ya know, HappyFlyer, it’s more difficult to develop a constructive habit on this one than it seems. It’s true that a plane is a relatively public place. And it’s a challenge to hide the tears if you’re sitting in any seat other than a window seat. It’s awkward to wipe your nose as you get up to let someone out for the bathroom. On the other hand, a flight is a great period of time to reflect on things, and a movies are good lubricant for emotions. When else in your life do you have several hours of concentrated time… Read more »
Hmm. There are some interesting questions in there. Just a few quick scattered thoughts: >> On the other hand, a flight is a great period of time to reflect on things, and movies are good lubricant for emotions.” That’s beautifully said. >> When else in your life do you have several hours of concentrated time where you can reflect, read, watch a movie, and think over life’s twists and turns? Agreed. Though I certainly hope that one would make time for those things occasionally – even when not on a flight. What’s life, if it’s rushed through without taking the… Read more »
[…] I have a rule that I won’t watch comedy shows I’ve never seen before on planes because there’s just too much chance of uncontrollable laughter. When you’re laughing to yourself in a small place with no sound, people tend to give looks. This post on Travel Update is along those same lines making the argument for why you shouldn’t watch sappy movies while flying. […]
If the airline thinks enough people are crying over the food, maybe they’ll improve it. Sappy movies could actually help us all.
I thought I was the only one who wept at the stupidest of films on airplanes (only). We’re not alone, this was actually covered on This American Life and it has to do with the air onboard.