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Star Wars Secret Cinema


Secret Cinema has been bringing its unique fusion of film, music, theatre and art to abandoned spaces across London since 2007. They run two types of event: the original, where both location and film are kept under wraps until the final moment and their more recent projects, Secret Cinema Presents, where the film is announced in advance.

Though I am a massive movie fan, I put off buying a ticket for their previous cinematic events as I was apprehensive about forking out what seemed like a lot of money for something so covert. However when ‘Star Wars – Empire Strikes Back’ was announced as their latest Secret Cinema Presents production, my excitement took over from any previous doubts.

This series of films has continued to be a firm favourite of mine all the way from childhood to present day. They hold many memories;
Being scared (but trying to keep my cool) whilst watching them at a young age with my grandparents. Saving up my Dairylea Triangle tokens to get my much loved ewok video.
Forcing my mum to go on the ride at Disney despite the fact hates both Sci-Fi and theme parks.
My teenage friends finding my secret lightsaber and never letting me forget it.
Missing lectures at uni by being slumped hungover and watching ‘just one more’ film.

Now it was time to embrace my inner fantasy fangirl by heading out in London as a galactic explorer.

So, was my first Secret Cinema experience worth the price tag? Without any spoilers I am going to try to put into word why my answer is a resounding YES.

After buying my ticket I was excited, but I had a long six week wait before being able to enjoy my purchase. For someone as impatient as me, this felt like a lightyear away. Secret Cinema had my restlessness covered with emails, a website especially for those who were deemed worthy enough to become part of the rebel alliance, and events to help get in touch with that inner force.

Anticipation successfully built, the last piece of information shared was my new identity and “travel details”.

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Costumes on and excited to depart the real world for a few hours, we arrived at the venue where the experience began immediately. Though this event was created for fans, with meticulous attention to deal and in jokes all the way through, it was really up to you how much you threw yourself into the action. The only thing that you are “forced” to participate with is giving up your phone for the duration of the evening. This seemed to deeply aggravate the couple behind me, however in such a digitally reliant age it was the only way to ensure that the mystery was not spoiled for future guests. I actually really enjoyed being completely disconnect for the evening, as it allowed me to fully soak in the surroundings without any distractions.

Before the movie even began there was around two hours of entertainment where you could either be an observer or actively be part of the narrative. We did a mixture of both, enjoying some amazing spicy stall food and a craft beer in the same bar as Chewbacca (I was legit star struck) before getting involved in a mission with a fellow rebel.

I was so engrossed in the world that had been created, I started feel like an actual inhabitant of Tatooine and could have happily stayed there all evening but alarm bells started to ring and we were whisked through to the next round of entertainment. This was a full blown theatrical experience where we gasped, booed, cheered, clapped and whooped like excitable children.

Finally, it was time for the film to be screened, but the live action didn’t stop there…

The attention to details, props, costume, theatrics, and film provided us with 5 hours of non-stop entertainment that was of such a high standard I would go as far to say the whole event was a bargain. It may have taken me a while to be convinced by the concept but Secret Cinema I am now ‘with you’ and this will absolutely not be my last event.

Have any of you been to Secret Cinema? Did you love it as much as me? Would you be keen to get tickets for a future event?

15 comments

  1. adales8 says:

    I have a lot of actor fans who work for secret cinema between jobs and they say it’s just as much fun to do as to go see! x

    1. Emma says:

      That would be such an awesome job!

  2. We’ve got tickets for Friday 25th September. You thought you were getting in touch with your inner child? On that day I will be celebrating my 60th birthday! I can’t wait to get dressed up and have some fun!

  3. erinniimi says:

    Ahh I wanted to go to this so badly! I absolutely love the Empire Strikes Back, but I am the same as you – I’m hesitant about forking out that much for a film I’ve seen before, but your review makes it sound totally worth it!

    1. Emma says:

      It is completely worth forking out for

  4. Laura says:

    My husband has been telling me all about Secret Cinema recently, he really wants to go (and that’s unusual for him – he’s a complete homebody usually!). Think you just convinced me… 🙂

    Laura | Loved By Laura

    1. Emma says:

      You should absolutely get tickets for the next one it is such a fun night out

  5. I’ve heard so many good reviews of this, I really want to go! I need to get investigating tickets before it ends!! x

    Jasmin Charlotte | UK Lifestyle Blog

    1. Emma says:

      You should totally go and then we can geek out about it.

  6. Leanne says:

    I wanted to do the BTTF one last year but I just couldn’t justify the price. I didn’t realise it lasted so long though as when you work it out as cost per hour it’s not too bad at all actually x

    1. Emma says:

      It is totally worth the cost, as it is SOOOO much more than just going to see a movie

  7. Paige says:

    Ahh this seems so cool! My boyfriend would of loved this! x

    heldtogetherbypins.blogspot.co.uk

    1. Emma says:

      It is so much fun even if you are not a full on Star Wars fan you can’t help but get engrossed

  8. manikreigun says:

    Too bad I was like you initially that stepped back a bit because of the price.. I guess next time I should really go in and go for the unknown.

    ‘Do or do not, there is not try.’

    Manik Makina | That MM Blog

    1. Emma says:

      As you can probably tell I think it is absolutely worth the money, I would highly recommend getting a ticket for their next event.

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