Movie day lives on for new generation

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Sunday used to be movie day when I was a child.

At our house in Fratton, me and my older brother Danny would close the curtains to make the room dark (just like at the cinema) and get comfy in our huge captain beds, piling up the pillows for comfort.

But instead of a huge cinema-like screen, we’d be watching on our small, portable TV, balanced on top of the bookcase.

We did have a video player in the house but that was in the living room, so we had to rely on the four channels available.

Not one of these channels was dedicated to movies but one of them would normally screen a flick on a Sunday.

Thinking back, Tom Hank’s movies must have been very popular back in the early ‘90s because he stars in all the films I remember watching with my brother. There was Turner and Hooch, the story of a slobbery dog who was the only witness to a crime, and Big, about a 12-year-old boy who wasn’t quite tall enough to go on the rides at the fairground and wished he was bigger.

I remember one of my first crushes being Daryl Hannah, who starred as a mermaid in Splash.

Now, 20 years later, I’ve decided to resurrect Sunday movie day.

My eldest daughter Caitlin is now at an age where she will sit through a movie.

I don’t think I’d risk taking her to the local cinema yet in case boredom set in, but if we’re in the comfort of our own home and her toys and crayons are within touching distance she’s okay.

One of the many great things about being a dad is being able to watch those movies you wouldn’t normally get round to watching on your own.

So in the past month I’ve reacquainted myself with The Jungle Book, Pinocchio and The Little Mermaid.

Recently, I flicked over to find the movie Coraline had just started.

A press of the information button on the remote control assured me that this was an animated children’s movie.

Perfect I thought. But, how children’s movies have changed since I was a boy.

Is this really a family film, I thought? If you’ve seen it, you’ll know what I mean.

I kept a watchful eye on Caitlin to see how she would react to this dark fairytale with more than a few creepy characters.

To my surprise, she loved it and when the credits rolled asked if she could watch it again.

I think next Sunday we’ll return to something a bit more traditional.

Caitlin is looking forward to watching Finding Nemo and The Rescuers.

I think her daddy is looking forward to seeing them even more.