Hands up: Who gets weepy at the movies?
It's not too bad when you're sitting in a darkened movie theatre, and have time to mop up the tears before the lights come back on. But if you're in public, blubbing away whilst frantically searching for tissues is not a good look.
That's why I was thrilled to read that Virgin Atlantic has introduced Emotional Health Warnings for inflight movies.
Yes, apparently the airline management are so concerned at the number of Tired And Emotional passengers on board, they've decided to flash a warning sign before the start of tearjerker movies. The warning will advise passengers to have tissues at the ready, and to press the call button for a shoulder to cry on if necessary.
That would have come in handy when I watched Marley And Me on a flight to Samoa with the family a few years ago. I bawled my eyes out, even though I'd read the book and knew what was coming.
Oh yes, the kids thought it was HILARIOUS.
"Hey look, Mum's crying," they shouted happily, just in case anyone in our vicinity had not already noticed.
So it's good to know I'm not alone.
A recent Virgin Atlantic survey found that 55% of passengers agreed their emotions become heightened when on a flight. A staggering 41% of men surveyed said they hid under blankets to hide their tears. Bless.
Meanwhile, women said they were most likely to hide their tears by pretending they had something in their eye. Yeah, like anyone is going to believe that old chestnut.
Psychologist Corinne Sweet says our emotions are heightened when we're in the air.
“High flyers feel emotional at altitude as their defences are lower than usual, as they put themselves in someone else’s safe hands. The space created by long-haul flying can allow for deep-seated feelings to surface, especially when triggered by tear-jerking films."
Members of Virgin Atlantic’s Facebook site, were asked which movies have made them cry whilst on board aircraft. The top 10 movies?
1) Toy Story 3
2) The Blind Side
3) Eat Pray Love
4) My Sister’s Keeper
5) Seven Pounds
6) Brokeback Mountain
7) The Notebook
8) Gran Torino
10) Billy Elliott
Virgin Atlantic’s Film Critic Jason Solomons says films inspire strong emotions.
“On a flight, we're isolated, leaving loved ones or aching to be reunited with them. We're nervous, we're tired, we might have had a drink at a time we usually wouldn't. If we see an image, a scene that reflects our emotional state, frankly we're suckers.
"Flying and films is a heady cocktail, the images and feelings so close to your eyeballs, so intimate. It's the modern-day drive-in and they always seemed to me the most romantic of dates.
“You don't really want to land with mascara running down your cheeks or bloodshot eyes but you can't help it. And if you're tempted to hug the stranger next to you, just point to the screen blubbing and I'm sure they'll understand."
Yeah, either that or ask the flight staff if they can change seats!
So readers, have you joined the Mile High Blub? Leave a comment below, and you'll be in the running to win one of four Friends With Benefits packs.
Courtesy of Sony Pictures Australia, the packs include a double in-season pass to Friends With Benefits, starring Justin Timberlake and Mila Kunis; a Friends With Benefits Little Black Book, and a mini-pillow.
Winners will be announced on Friday August 26, 2011.