Whether you love a bit of Bond, heaps of Harry Potter or mountains of Marvel action, nothing quite captures the imagination better than a night at the movies. But after you’ve stood in a frustratingly long queue, then struggled to find your increasingly expensive seat in the dark, all whilst juggling your expensive popcorn and bucket-sized drink, the novelty can soon wear off.

The solution? You could have a cheaper and more memorable night in by hosting a movie night at home. You control the start time, the snacks, the themes, the guest list and what’s on the box. Plus, you can chat away throughout the film if you like, pause it for a toilet break, and avoid being disturbed by the sound of rustling packets or lip locking in the back row!

Here’s our guide to hosting a movie night at home. With suggestions on how to choose the best movies to watch with your friends or family, cinema room ideas, themes and, of course, the best movie snacks you should stock up on from your local convenience store. Discover our top movie night ideas below for the best at-home cinema experience.

family having a movie night at home

Oscar-Worthy Movie Night Ideas at Home

There are a few important things to consider when hosting a movie night at home, and it’s equally important that you think about them in the right order. Think of yourself as a director – you’ve got to combine your roles with the right cast, mix in the right themes and setting to ensure that the story of the night is a memorable one for everyone involved.

1. The Cast: Your Guest List

So, who will be the stars of your movie night? Your attendees will have a big say in which films you choose and what you serve. Boys night in, girls night in, or a mix of both? Age, personality, relationship to you – all these factors can all have an impact on the movie night ideas you choose to follow.

One of the trickiest parts of hosting such a night is the movie choice, and your audience will help to narrow down the options. If you’re the host, you could always base your audience on the demographic that best suits your own film preference. So if you’re a big fan of horror, naturally the guests should be 18+. Love an animated family movie? Maintain your street cred and avoid blowing your cover by ensuring the guest list includes a few youngsters too. Looking for good movies for movie night at home? We’ve got a few suggestions coming up…

film night ideas

2. Think of a Theme

Once you know who is coming along, it’s time to set a movie night theme for the evening. This is a great way of elevating a film night at home into a fun-filled movie night party.

But what are some good movies for movie night at home? Here are some of our suggested movie night themes you could choose, based on your guest list:

Film Buffs

  • Films featuring a popular male/female lead.
  • Films featuring a hero/heroine or role model.
  • Films all directed by the same director.
  • Movies with a cult following.

Sporty/Outdoor Types

  • Sports-based underdog stories.
  • Kung Fu films.
  • Spy/action films.
  • Films with added muscle.

The Creatives Minds

  • Sci-Fi.
  • Psychological Thrillers.
  • Film Noir.

Family

  • Wizardry and magic.
  • Animated classics.
  • Films featuring animals.
  • Films with a leading child actor/actress.
outdoor cinema room ideas

Once you know the theme you want to use, you can begin to shape the rest of the night. And there are lots of movie night ideas you can use to carry the theme through outside of what’s in the DVD player.

Fancy Dress: You’ve chosen a Western theme, so advise your guests to come dressed as cowboys/cowgirls. Opted for a musical marathon? Every guest should come dressed as a character from their favourite musical. The possibilities are endless!

Room Decoration: Youve gone with a sports theme – so dress the room with sports-based props like balls and bats. Wizards and magic? Bring out the glitter and the witches’ hats and brooms.

Games: You can create a few fun games to play on the night between movies too – they can be question and answer based, such as “do an impression of a character” or “complete this line from the film…”, general trivia or a movie-themed game of charades!

kid choosing a movie for film night

3. Choose your Movies

You thought this would be priority no.1, didn’t you? But there are literally millions of films to choose from, so going in cold on such an important choice, without narrowing down the options with the steps above, is a tough task. Get this part wrong and your movie night is ruined… So no pressure!

Relieve some of the burden by making your film choice a democratic process. When you know your audience and theme, brainstorm some options and circulate them to your guests. Then collect the votes and choose the movies.

You may decide on a movie marathon. Gone down the underdog theme? How about the entire Rocky series? Want a heroine to root for? There’s the Hunger Games trilogy. Choosing a ‘box set’ of movies is really handy for getting your theme on point for the night, but don’t forget how long it will take to watch the whole set – you don’t want to leave your movie night without a proper ending. Three movies is probably a maximum for a proper movie night/early morning.

popcorn movie night snacks

4. Choose your snack menu

What should you consider when choosing your movie night snacks? Here are a few things:

  • Noise level – packaging and munching
  • Theme fit
  • Mess potential
  • Sweet and savoury options

There are nearly as many movie night ideas when it comes to snacks as there are movies themselves. Popcorn is a classic film accompaniment, has a lower chewing decibel level than many crisps and comes in a range of flavours – check out our range of online, to help complete your movie night snacks table.

Looking for something easy to prepare and as easy to share? It’s got to be . What’s more, you can pick up a full meal bundle of soft drinks, wine, pizza and sides for less than the price of a standard cinema ticket.

If youve chosen an emotional rollercoaster of a film, nothing is more comforting than a few sweet treats. Cinema favourites include share and which can easily be passed around gripped viewers.

Decided to have your guests stay over to complete the movie marathon? Offer each a tub of ice-cream in your pyjamas, such as and flavours. It will help you get over any on-screen heartbreak in seconds.

Don’t forget that your movie snacks can also carry the theme, too. Sci-Fi night? Offer Space Raiders crisps. Matilda? A big chocolate cake will go well. If you have chosen Babe however, maybe overlook the cocktail sausages…

outdoor film night set up

5. Set up your seating

Looking for home cinema room ideas? Make sure that everyone in attendance gets a great view of the screen in comfort. Whilst you may not be able to offer a handy drinks holder in their arm rest like the real deal, you can still make everything easily accessible. Our top movie night seating ideas include:

  • Bean bags
  • Air beds
  • Soft rugs
  • Oversized pillows
  • Inflatable chairs
  • Yoga mats

This kind of temporary furniture means your movie night can be hosted in any room of the house with a TV, and ensures chilled out comfort for every viewer, no matter how long the film lasts.

movie night ideas graphic

Hosting a Movie Night? Head to SPAR

A movie night party is one of the most fun things to do with friends at home – and with SPAR, it can also be one of the more budget-friendly and memorable activities, too. With our movie night ideas and special offers, you can have the ultimate night at the movies, from the comfort of your own home. Fire up Netflix or your DVD player, roll out the red carpet for your cast and head to your local convenience store to pick up all your supplies. Looking for more at-home fun? to get the latest on our newest recipes, competitions and deals.