Monday, August 02, 2010

Traditional film theatres continue to thrive

Traditional film theatres continue to thrive
Chethan Kumar, Bangalore, August 1, DHNS:

Multiplexes are adding more screens — they're buying out single screen cinemas as well as fanning out to more cities and towns - Bangalore not barred.

Yes, some theatres in the City have been bought over or converted, some have shut down, but the traditional cinema hall is not set to fade out. Not yet. For cinema halls run based on the movies and not how bad their competition is, aver many in the business.
Rex, Shankarnag Chitramandira (which is now Fame Shankarnag), Urvashi, Cauvery, many theatres on Kempegowda Road, some in Ulsoor, Mukunda in Kammanahalli and many more are standing in the way of a complete wash out of this culture. And so are ‘typical’, ‘traditional’ movie buffs, who still swear by single-screen cinema, ‘the real cinema’ as they refer to it.

To find out how much of an impact multi-screen theatres really have on single-screen halls, Deccan Herald spent some time at Sampige theatre –– which recently got a new neighbour in Mantri mall which houses the Inox multiplex.

The first three shows on Sunday (the theatre is screening a Tamil movie – Thillalangadi) saw a good response, reflecting that contrary to popular belief, these halls are not dying. Speaking to Deccan Herald owner of theatres Sampige and Savita, Ramesh said: “We’re absolutely fine. Business is as it was before the mall came up because what defines our business is the movie alone.”

Some of the City’s movie buffs are in full conformity with his views. It’s a clash of cultures here, with different wants and different definitions of cinema.

While malls/multiplexes offer what many a person in the City define a complete experience, for ‘real’ movie buffs a complete cinema experience is never there to be taken at multiplexes.

“Multiplexes are a fad, too plastic and ‘refined’ for a real movie experience,” says Subrahmanya, adding that “what is not spool-driven is not real cinema. The digital age might be here to stay but there is a definite need to save the culture of real cinema.”
He adds that the spool-driven movies with several of its shortcomings is what makes a real film, which doesn’t hide incompetency through refinement.

Agreeing with this in full is Vani, who says the feel of the movie crowd is at cinema halls, not multiplexes. “The smell of the place, the way the crowd behaves, the ‘non-digital’, real film that is screened is the complete experience. This is never there at multiplexes.”

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