Before the coronavirus, I tended to spend my weeknights, weekends, and waking hours outside of the Air Mail offices strapped to the seat in a movie theater. It didn’t matter what they were playing or when they were playing it, just so long as I could sit in a dark room with the stories and sights and sounds illuminating the screen and my mind. So when the city’s cinemas closed for nearly 12 months, I had to get creative.

Without a television in my apartment—and because my laptop screen wasn’t cutting the mustard—I spent my days imagining the brick wall outside my bed-living-bathroom window was the big screen I pined for. I let my speakers play the role of projector, and blared songs so cinematic that their stories seemed to play out across the air-shaft wall.

The theaters in the city have finally reopened, but the painter’s tape they use to cordon off every other seat has a way of tugging at your hair like a comb through a kid’s knotted mop. So pull a chair up to your wall or window and set these sonic sights a-rolling.

Alex Oliveira is an Associate Editor for AIR MAIL