Swedish geographer, Torsten Hagerstrand, developed the concept of the three constraints to illustrate how individuals navigate their way and their daily paths – in this case, going to the cinemas – structured by interacting capacity, coupling, and authority constraints.
Hagerstrand explains the three constraints as:
1. Capability: Limits on human movement due to physical factors, access to mobility tools, and the availability of financial resources
2. Coupling: The need to be in one particular place for a given length of time. often in interaction with other people.
3. Authority: An area that is controlled by certain people or institutions that set limits on its access to particular individuals or groups
“Time has a critical importance when it comes to fitting people and things together for functioning in socio-economic systems” Hence, a given location may be near an individual, but if a person cannot allocate enough time to travel to it, spatial proximity alone will not be enough to allow the person to visit it.
Therefore to put in practice, Hagerstrand’s three constraints, I went to the movies a few weeks ago to understand the way I planned to get there, the right time, and if I was actually allowed to go. (Lucky enough I’m over the age of 15)
Not only does going somewhere alone give me anxiety, but watching a movie at the cinemas alone is a big NO. Thank god for illegal downloads and Netflix, because now I can ugly cry in my own bed whilst stuffing my face with popcorn and have no one judge me…except my own reflection, when it hits the laptop screen.
One movie I did have to experience in the cinematic environment was the latest phenomena “Suicide Squad.” And no, I didn’t go alone. I went with a friend who managed to fall asleep on me and put even more attention on us. Unfortunately, the set times for that day was our own fault, considering we didn’t plan to go until 2 hours before we left. We were lucky enough to have timed it correctly and made it in our seats with a medium popcorn in our hands.
Although the screening of the movie was at a late time, we drove the 20 minutes and left at 11:45pm; dead tired, hungry, and desperate for sleep. Not only did the movie not live up to my expectations, but at the stroke of midnight I believed that the Joker was good looking.
So to say that this cinema experience was a disaster would be over dramatic, it was a good way to get out of the house and an easy way to see a friend who, even though fell asleep, was great company.
Overall, going to the cinema will always be something that I cherished throughout my childhood, and something I will definitely want my children to experience. But for now, I’d rather leave the hassle of rushing to make the set times, stay in bed, and watch Netflix