Having never been to a Secret Cinema show, it seemed fitting that my first experience would be the most epic production for them to pull off- Back To The Future! If you aren’t familiar with Secret Cinema, it is a cinematic experience. You are immersed into the living, breathing world of that particular movie. Past films have been Ghostbusters, Who Killed Roger Rabbit or The Grand Budapest Hotel. This year’s choice of Back To The Future turned everyone into rabid fans in order to secure tickets! Fancy dress is highly encouraged- and since Back To The Future is mostly set in 1955- I couldn’t wait to get my hands on a retro styled dress. With promises of a real life Hill Valley brought to life, this was one date in my diary that I couldn’t wait for.
I bought my 50’s style dress by Lindy Bop from Amazon, slicked on red lip stick and shoes and traipsed to Hackney Wick. The train platform at Highbury & Islington was crowded with people in 50’s style costumes, much to the puzzlement of everyone on the opposite platform. Once we got to Hackney Wick, we followed the dodgy Faux-merican man’s directions towards Hill Valley and my rockabilly dreams.
It was quite a far walk from the station to the start of the enormous queue to get into the site. I would really recommend going to Stratford station instead. To be fair, despite the long queue, it went down fairly quickly. You’re then ushered in by more Faux-mericans and bags are quickly checked before you are then ushered towards yet another area to collect your wristband and a town map. This is also where you hand in your mobile phone! Or if, like me, you can’t bear to be parted from it, hide it discreetly in your purse. They sell disposable cameras inside for £6 so you can take snaps of your experience- you just can’t upload it straightaway onto Instagram 😉
SPOILER ALERT! (sort of)
Once through the gates, you can have your photo taken at one of many town billboards. This photo makes me chuckle because our friends look lovely and magazine ready. And then there’s me and Robin. We are The Derps. I’m surprised there isn’t a trail of drool hanging off our faces. Literally one minute after this was taken, my skirt flew up and my big granny pants were on show to everyone. Stratford…I mean, Hill Valley…is blustery.
Any further details than that…my lips are sealed (okay, okay, we had a boogie at The Enchantment Under The Sea dance!)
– bring something warm to wear; it got SO COLD in the evening
– bring cash
– buy food from the food stalls; the queue in Lou’s Diner was enormous. We had delicious venison burgers in minutes.
– the best spot on the grass to watch is probably the front left; grab a spot, put your blanket down, and ask your neighbour to keep an eye on it.
– they really mean it when they say No Jaywalking!
– keep your eyes peeled!