Movie night must-haves for busy families

Family movie night is a great way to relax after a busy week, but sometimes we get so busy that our own lives feel like movies. Try these must-haves to make your next movie night hassle-free.

Family watching movie

1a plan

Check the dates for upcoming new releases at your video store. Pick up the latest guide book, or join its email list so you’ll always be first to know when your favorite movie is coming out on DVD.

If you have a Netflix account, you can add movie titles to your queue, so the next DVD in line will be sent to you on DVD or streamed to your TV when you return the first one on the list.

If you are a cable subscriber, scroll on-demand listings a few days before movie night. Decide as a family which movie you’ll purchase.

If your grocery or drug store has a Redbox kiosk, you can rent a DVD at a ridiculously low price when you stop to do your shopping… which brings us to the next tip.


No movie is complete without popcorn. You can try different toppings if you pop your own. Don’t forget about healthy snacks, too, like a vegetable and dip tray or sliced fruit. If you’re so inclined, order a pizza or other takeout, and eat dinner during the movie.

3Kids’ choice

If you have more than one child, let them take turns choosing the movie. It will eliminate arguments, and each child will feel special on “her” movie night. This can be challenging with a big age difference: One child is more into Cars while the other likes Fast and the Furious. You may need to have one “extra special” movie night on which one child watches his movie with Mom while the other watches hers with Dad.

4An after-movie routine

Have the kids change into pajamas and settle into parts of their bedtime routine before movie night begins — but teeth brushing can wait until after popcorn time.

More family night ideas

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