Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Reasons To Be Cheerful #7

(If you're wondering what this is all about, click here.)

The Electric Cinema

You know the expression "It'll be in the last place you look"? Well, nothing could be truer of Birmingham.

You want a fantastic Victorian pub restored to its former grandeur and serving the finest real ales and superb Thai cuisine? Go to Newtown, where the sound of gunfire seems to ring out every day.

You want a smart modern theatre with a big reputation? Go to the end of Broad Street, the Brummie beer boys' Friday night catwalk.

You want a fabulous "luxury cinema" dedicated to showing the artier side of things? Go down an insalubrious stairwell that stinks of piss next to New Street Station and hey presto - the Electric Cinema.

The Electric reopened after refurbishment and under new management in December, and is another jewel in the city's crown. With its art-deco stylings and old-school plush red fold-down seats, it's a million miles from the bland McMultiplexes designed to shoehorn in as many punters to has many films as possible.

There's an assortment of snacks, handmade ice-creams and drinks, including a good range of wines starting at about £10 a bottle, all of which can be taken freely into the auditorium.

As can be imagined, it's not particularly cheap - £6 for a standard ticket, £4 for concessions and a hefty £10 for those who would prefer one of the sumptuous leather sofas at the back of the auditorium - but then the glitzy and decadent surroundings certainly merit it.

It won't be long before I'm back again - Monday, to be precise...


Phill of Danger! High Postage writes about the reopened venue for the local BBC website.

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