On average, research has shown that we require two hours alone per day, in order to escape from social media and work pressures, plus improve mental health and well-being. Is it any wonder, that a recent survey revealed that the big screen has become a sanctuary for those looking for a little ‘me time’, with solo visits to movie theatres on the increase. Indeed, almost a quarter (24%) of those surveyed revealed that they go to the cinema on their own up to three times per year, and more than a third (36%) say they much prefer the solo cinema experience over going with company.
The findings showed a noticeable increase in participants’ heart rates during the film, with viewers in the healthy heart-zone for 45 minutes – equivalent to a light form of cardio. Fascinatingly, as viewers watched the film their heart rates became more closely aligned, often beating in unison. Skin conductance tests also showed that certain events in the film triggered an increase in emotional arousal levels.
Secondary research suggests that three unique elements of the cinema experience drove the findings; the focused activity, the shared social focus and the cultural element. Further analysis has proven long-term benefits on our overall brain function, memory, focus and productivity.
Watching a movie in public breaks the cycle of attention and gives the brain better things to do than focus on potential (not real) outcomes.