Here’s a rundown of Nottingham’s cinema scene. Where should you get your film fix?
Cineworld is the sum of its parts, a multiplex designed to fuel the cinematic needs of Joe Public. At the Nottingham branch, which is located in the Corner House on Burton Street, you’ll find the standard issue of blockbusters, overpriced popcorn buckets and an abhorrent disregard for cinema etiquette. In fact, sometimes the latter is so grotesque that it’s close to unbearable. Case in point: recently a young girl’s phone rang in the middle of a screening that I was attending; she promptly answered it and began a loud conversation. Adult ticket price is £8.20, with a discount to £5.70 for students in possession of a valid NUS card. There’s also a £2.10 surcharge for any 3D movies. This may all sound rather negative but what Cineworld does offer you is choice, i.e. the chance to watch the vast majority of new releases at many different times. There’s also one screen, 10, which wouldn’t look out of place in the cinema wing on the Death Star, so gigantic and imposing is its stature. We won’t recommend Cineworld as an automatic choice, but you’ll inevitably end up there at some point.
Suggestion: take a loud, muscly friend with you to shout at people who use their mobile phones during screenings.
Broadway Cinema, located in the heart of Nottingham on Broad Street in Hockley, is a popular independent picture house. For any enthusiasts, Broadway will tick almost all the desired boxes. From its sociable atmosphere to its ethos of subsidising foreign and niche films with bigger budget releases, it represents everything a ‘cinephile’ could desire. The venue also houses two bars, offering a variety of beverages and food. Regarding etiquette, Broadway operates on a staff discretion policy. There are no official channels; rather, everyone keeps an eye out for impoliteness. It’s largely effective, probably due to the manner of clientele that frequent Broadway, and you’ll find this establishment to be one of the most good-natured around. Tickets start at £5.50 for adults, plus a £2 subsidy for 3D, though if you’re an NUS holder read below…
Suggestion: pick up a student membership for £5. You get a free ticket along with a voucher for the bar, so you’ll make your money back instantly. From then on tickets will cost you a mere £3.50.
Frequented regularly by Lenton-based University students, The Savoy holds a special place in the hearts of many Nottingham graduates. Offering decent ticket prices, retro decor and an all-round nostalgic charm, this cinema will cater to any fan of the medium. You won’t get the picture/sound quality that you’d expect from Cineworld or Broadway, or even the cleanliness, but you are unlikely to find yourself complaining. It’s also located in the heart of Lenton, which is perfect for the vast amount of Nottingham University students who find themselves moving to this vibrant student hub for their second and third years. Come for the prices, stay for the ambience; chances are you will enjoy your time at The Savoy. However, for those important, exciting releases, you may want to make the extra effort and venture to a picture house in Nottingham’s town centre.
Suggestion: love seats are available for all you of sweethearts, i.e. two chairs without an armrest in between. Not essential, but fun nonetheless.
Showcase, another archetypal multiplex offering big releases, overpriced snacks and sticky carpets, is convenient for those located in the Dunkirk area. It’s not exactly popular with students – I have only been there once – and reports of lights coming on during films and food trolleys freely roaming in front of the screens make it an unsavoury prospect. My experience was marred by both of the above. They did give me two free tickets for my troubles; although I’m not sure that I’ll bother using them.
The Screen Room
After its initial closure in early 2011, Nottingham’s Screen Room, dubbed as ‘the world’s smallest cinema’, is to reopen under the guise of Screen 22, now with the slightly less impressive slogan ‘Europe’s smallest cinema’. By the time this goes to print, Screen 22 will be back in business.