There’s nothing quite like the magic of watching a film on the big screen.

As we prepare to reopen ODEON cinemas safely throughout the UK, we've found five fantastic moments from film that capture the joy we all feel in front of the silver screen…


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1. “Glamour and strife, bigger than life!”


From: Annie (1982)

In this 1982 musical crowdpleaser, Annie (Aileen Quinn) persuades her billionaire benefactor Oliver Warbucks (Albert Finney) into taking her to the cinema for the very first time. As she helps her dress for the occasion, Warbuck’s secretary Grace (Ann Reinking) captures the magic of cinema - and Annie's imagination - in song.

With lines like “glamour and strife, bigger than life,” and “sitting in the darkness, what a world to see”, Annie’s eyes light up with longing and they grow even wider when she arrives at Radio City Music Hall, where singing ushers and dancing girls are waiting to greet her.

It’s a reminder of the wonder we all felt the first time we visited a cinema.

Fun fact... At the time, Annie was the most expensive musical ever made!

2. “They’re watching Snow White… and they love it!”


From: Gremlins (1984)

After laying waste to Kingston Falls, the Gremlins congregate at the town's local cinema, which happens to be showing the Disney classic, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. As the opening bars of Heigh-Ho strike up, the creatures halt their raucous chatter and delightedly join in with the song, reminding us: nothing beats being amongst friends whilst you're swept away by the silver screen.

Utterly transfixed by the events on the screen, they don’t notice heroic humans Billy (Zach Galligan) and Kate (Phoebe Cates) prepping an explosion… Bye-bye mini monsters!.

Fun fact... The gremlins were inspired by the noisy mice in writer Chris Columbus’ flat.

3. “Wait, wait, wait, wait… here she comes!”


From: The Shawshank Redemption (1994)

The Shawshank Redemption is filled with stand-out moments, ranging from traumatic to jubilant to gently heartwarming. Among the latter is the film’s cinema scene, where Red (Morgan Freeman) and his fellow inmates are watching Gilda, the 1946 classic with Rita Hayworth and Glenn Ford.

Locked up in a maximum-security state penitentiary, with little to nothing in the way of creature comforts, this scene proves above all: cinema provides an escape like nothing else.

For Andy (Tim Robbins) that proves to be true in more ways than one...

Fun fact... The film adapts Stephen King’s novella, Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption.

4. “Shall we let the poor devils see the film?”


From: Cinema Paradiso (1988)

This Oscar-winning Italian drama recalls how a successful film director first falls in love with the cinema.

Boasting terrific turns from the trio of actors playing central character ‘Toto’ (as a young boy, teenager and older man), and Philippe Noiret as small-town projectionist Alfredo, Cinema Paradiso is an ode to the wonder of the silver screen, as demonstrated by this magnificent sequence in which the townsfolk demand to be shown a film and inventively get their wish.

A film about films for people who love films...

Fun fact... The film also won the Special Jury Prize at the 1989 Cannes Film Festival.

5. “One please!”


From: Once Upon A Time… In Hollywood (2019)

As Oscar-winning editor Walter Murch wrote in a recent article for The Guardian, “a theatrical screening deeply enhances the experience of cinema… Humans have been assembling in the dark, listening to stories, since the invention of language. It is indelibly part of who we are and how we bond with each other.”

In Quentin Tarantino's love letter to Tinseltown Once Upon A Time In... Hollywood, Sharon Tate (Margot Robbie) settles down into a cinema showing a film she starred in. Her visible joy as she hears the audience laughing at her on-screen antics reminds us of that warm feeling that is unique to the communal experience of cinema - when you witness others reacting as you are, whether it’s giggling, crying or jumping out of their skin.

Fun fact... Quentin Tarantino has described this as his most “personal” film yet.


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We look forward to welcoming you back to ODEON soon – the movies have missed you and so have we!


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