Best Classic Movies & Snacks For A Redford Theatre-Inspired Watch Party

Wading in Big Shoes - Best Classic Movies & Snacks For A Redford Theatre-Inspired Watch Party
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I don’t know about you guys, but man—I miss going to the movies. Weekends just aren’t the same without trips to the theater, but that doesn’t mean we can’t recreate a little movie magic in our living rooms, right?

Now, watching movies at home isn’t a revolutionary concept by any means, but the ways we watch movies at home can always be tweaked to create more enjoyable experiences. An easy way to do that? Incorporate a few elements that remind you of your favorite cinema! Lately, I’ve been missing the razzmatazz of Detroit’s historic Redford Theatre, so I pulled together a couple components I knew would transport me there: Primo snacks and the perfect selection of classic movies.

Recreating Redford Theatre Movie Snacks

Wading in Big Shoes - Best Classic Movies & Snacks For A Redford Theatre-Inspired Watch Party
Above: It's not a movie without snacks! Popcorn (with real butter, not the fake stuff), Vernors, and sweet potato cookies are what come to mind when I think of Redford Theatre concessions.

First things first: Before you sit down and click “rent” in that on-demand app, you’ve got to have the appropriate food on hand. To recreate our favorite Redford Theatre concessions, I made sure to have a bag of hot popcorn (complete with butter pour-over), a two-liter of Vernors, and a fresh batch of sweet potato cookies on hand. Why sweet potato cookies? Glad you asked.

Wading in Big Shoes - Best Classic Movies & Snacks For A Redford Theatre-Inspired Watch Party
For those of you who don’t know, the Redford Theatre is located right across the street from Sweet Potato Sensations, a Detroit bakery that’s been around (in various locations) since the late ’80s. The Redford sells little bags of Sweet Potato Sensations cookies at every movie showing (chocolate chip walnut, raisin walnut, and I believe some nut-free varieties), and they make the perfect snack to share or devour on your own.

I had hoped to order some Sweet Potato Sensations (SPS) cookies for delivery when I was planning this post, but the bakery was unfortunately not open at the time. I ended up attempting a copycat batch of my own, and while they definitely weren’t the same thing, they were pretty good! At the time of writing this, SPS has reopened for curbside pickup, so if you’re able to call in an order and swing by, I highly recommend giving their menu (they’ve got pies, meals, and tons of other treats) a try.

Wading in Big Shoes - Best Classic Movies & Snacks For A Redford Theatre-Inspired Watch Party
Above: My first attempt at making sweet potato cookies didn’t go too badly! I already had most of the ingredients on hand, my kitchen smelled like autumn (think pumpkin bread scents), and there was plenty of cookie dough left to freeze for later. Bonus tip: Try listening to a movie theater organ playlist while baking to get into that Redford Theatre pre-show mood!

Redford Theatre-Worthy Classic Movies

Facebook Watch Parties

Wading in Big Shoes - Best Classic Movies & Snacks For A Redford Theatre-Inspired Watch Party
Above image from The Redford Theatre's official Facebook page

Shortly after businesses and entertainment venues began shutting down for quarantine, the Redford Theatre started hosting free(!!), streamable watch parties on Facebook. Currently taking place two to three times per week, these “parties” serve as virtual gatherings where viewers can watch classic movies from the comfort and safety of their own homes. If your schedule doesn’t line up, no worries—the movies are saved to the Redford Theatre’s Facebook page so you can watch later at a time that’s convenient for you. The Redford also posts other specials like classic cartoons and The Three Stooges shorts throughout the week, so make sure you’re following them (and turn on those notifications!) to get updates whenever “new” videos premiere.

Follow the Redford Theatre for weekly watch parties and more here!

**Note: The Redford Theatre is a nonprofit organization that’s entirely volunteer-run. If you are able and willing, consider donating a few dollars to the theater for each watch party you "attend" ($5 is the price of a regular, in-person movie ticket) to help with operation and renovation costs now and in the future. :)

Stream-Worthy Classics

Wading in Big Shoes - Best Classic Movies & Snacks For A Redford Theatre-Inspired Watch Party
If you’ve plowed through the Redford’s current online catalog or simply have something different in mind, there are tons of other great classic movies out there. Some of my go-tos (and past/recurring Redford Theatre favorites) are:

Audrey Hepburn Films

Breakfast at Tiffany’s (One of my faves—an Audrey Hepburn classic! Some content makes it better for older teens and adults).

Wait Until Dark (Saw this one at the Redford a few years ago—watch it with the lights out for extra suspense and a fantastic jump scare.)

Roman Holiday (Old-school Audrey. Adventure, light-hearted chaos, and of course, Italia.)

Hitchcock Favorites (Suspense/Thrillers)

Psycho (1960) (Probably the creepiest of Hitchcock’s film catalog, in my opinion. A must-see if you’re up for something scary...but if disturbed people disturb you, maybe don’t watch this one first. :) )

Rear Window (This one’s probably my favorite Hitchcock movie! Jimmy Stewart, Grace Kelly, lots of people doing things they shouldn’t, and lots of anxiety for the viewer—Rear Window’s got it all).

The Birds (I’m not sure why so many people are so freaked out by this one, but it is a good movie regardless. Whether or not you think you’ll be properly weirded out by unexplainably-violent crows, you’ll want to give this one a watch. ;) )

Vertigo (What’s going on?! Does Jimmy Stewart know? Do we know? Mind games await.)

The Trouble With Harry (If creepy isn’t your thing, or if you’re just in the mood to dive deeper into the world of Hitchcock films, this dark comedy will have you giggling, not panicking.)

North By Northwest (If you like Cary Grant and wanna see him do crazy things like run in front of a plane or climb Mount Rushmore, give this one a try.)

To Catch A Thief (More Cary Grant. More Grace Kelly. Getchyour fill here, guys.)

Other Favorites

Casablanca (This was the first movie I ever saw at the Redford Theatre!)

West Side Story (If you know, you know! This musical is a Redford Theatre staple.)

Barefoot in the Park (If you liked Breakfast at Tiffany’s, this movie’s from around the same timeframe, has a similar aesthetic, and is really funny. Nothing super-racy here when compared to modern movies, but dialogue makes it better-suited for older teens and adults. Stars Jane Fonda and Robert Redford.)

Sunset Boulevard (Classic Gloria Swanson and Bill Holden film noir that follows a washed-up silent film star and struggling screenwriter in the early 1950s. It’s not technically a scary movie, but it’s gonna get pretty weird.)

The Wizard of Oz (Let’s be honest—you already have a copy of this sitting in your TV cabinet, don’t you?)

Singin’ In The Rain (Debbie Reynolds, classic songs, and GENE KELLY.)

An American In Paris (More singing, more dancing, a slightly-annoying female lead, and more GENE KELLY.)

The Shop Around The Corner (This one inspired the 1998 hit, You’ve Got Mail! Stars Jimmy Stewart, Margaret Sullavan, and a charming little rom-com situation.)

The Sound of Music (I ALWAYS forget how good this movie is. Every. Single. Time. Go watch this movie . . . it’s the best.)

How many of these movies have you seen (and which ones are on your list)? Any must-have snacks you just have to have when you're curled up with a good movie? And how do you like your popcorn? :) Comment below!

Wading in Big Shoes - Best Classic Movies & Snacks For A Redford Theatre-Inspired Watch Party