Automatic, Cinematic, Hydromatic

Cinema, the movies. Are they viable anymore? Are they really, a dying media experience? I took to the flicks to find out.

Saddled with ambition, I had asked my best friend to join me to see a film before Sue could even finish her sentence: prescribing us the task of attending a cinema and documenting our experience. If one thing is for sure, I never get the chance to go to the movies, ever. I can just never find time or justify spending so much money on going when I am already shelling out for Netflix.

This time was different. With an Event Cinema’s voucher from my 20th birthday (God bless) and an unwavering need to treat myself, there was one film in particular I was determined to see before it left cinemas – Dunkirk. Be it the allure of Style’s debut role or the sheer cinematic call of a Nolan film, I was determined to get myself to the flicks regardless. This was my kind of assignment.

Said assessment needed to be analysed using Hagerstrand’s three constraints:

  • ‘Capability Constraints’ are the limitations on the activities of the individual because of his biology and/or physical factors.
  • ‘Coupling Constraints’ are the restrictions on the space-time paths that must be coordinated to allow for interactions with other individuals.
  • ‘Authority Constraints’ refer to the restrictions applicable to each context, whereby the domain is controlled by a certain institution or group that limits the environments interactions for individuals or groups.

(Corbett, 2001, citing Hagerstrand, 1970)

With a Thursday night off for both Chloe and myself, I drove the two of us up to our local cinemas to go to the 6:30 session – facing our capability and coupling constraint. The authority constraint from our work rosters lessened, we still were restricted to purchasing tickets to enter the venue, a limitation that was not even enforced when we reached the doors – a constraint from authority or personal morals? Of course we also snuck our own food in the pockets of my ridiculously-oversized coat pockets, and settled in to enjoy ourselves. The film itself was incredible although was the exact opposite of the relaxing activity that we had in mind, constantly on the edge of our seats not in an engaged means but in a height of stress. Regardless, it was a nice change to our usual university task research, and personally I know for sure I have more on that voucher to claim in the near future…


Much love,



Corbett, J. (2001). Torsten Hӓgerstrand, Time Geography. CSISS Classics. Center for Spatially Integrated Social Science. [online] <>

Witheridge, G. (2015). Hagerstrand not the Irrational Man: An Analysis of Why Tumbleweeds Have Replaced Jaffas Rolling Down Cinema Aisles. [Blog] Giverny’s Posits, Ponderings and Postulations. <>


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