A Very Local Cinema

In the days of the out of town multiplexes we are now confronted with an experience that mirrors that of a theme park, the prices, the blockbusters, the food. It’s enough to take it out of you. Now in Moston, Manchester, an artist led project is taking all the stress of that entails of seeing a film, bringing them back to the cities. A Small Cinema lead by artist Sam Meech who has built a small 70 seater cinema in an empty shop space. When I first saw the Metro Newspaper article today, I was reminded of Janet Cardiff & Georges Bures Miller’s The Paradise Institute (2001), where the experience of the cinema was explored. Meech is aiming more for a regeneration of the lost local cinema’s which have long since gone with the advent of TV and Video which saw to the end of the cinema boom.

Of course seeing a film in a cinema should be an experience, having it on your doorstep it even more special. I once lived opposite a petrol station that was once a cinema, with its very definite architecture that allowed you to go back in time.The A Small Cinema project will run for a short while, but the effects will last far longer. Hopefully more pop-up projects will occur around the country. Local film groups will have other venues. Getting around the exhibition red-tape of the films.

The empty screens could also be used as places for amateur dramatics, pop-up productions, the stage is there, all you need to do is fill it. All the hard work in restoring these 70 seats can’t go to waste. I think its great to see a community based project that involves films. You can find more info at A Small Cinema.



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