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Cinematic London – A Guide to London Cinema Part 2

By on 14/04/2012

The original Cinematic London was written in the summer of last year when I first had the idea for Cognitive Space – please check it out. Some of the screens were summer popup screens and are no longer about. In addition to that has been many cinematic updates since then so I decided to do a part 2.

In continuation of part 1 – The Prince Charles Cinema is still my favorite cinema in London. The Asian Movies Meetup Group has gone from strength to strength moved from Barrio Central to the much more suitable Roxy Bar & Screen (which also featured in part 1). Lets roll this out……..




1 Charlie Chaplin Walk, SE1 8XR
Ticket prices – £13.50 upwards

I cannot believe I didn’t mention this in part 1 – Britain’s largest cinema screen and has just had its screen replaced and had an all new digital projector installed. I remember when this cinema was shrouded by mystery when it was first installed 13 years ago and is still ahead of the game. I truly understood what the hype was – I had never experienced cinema like that in my life and took a little while for my eyes to readjust afterwards – part due to the fact that it was an 1am showing and we also hit the vodka redbulls before hand – hehe. Speaking of which that bar in the complex is pretty dope. It has a similar sort of feel to the bar in the Curzon Soho mentioned in part 1, there are also seats in the outside for those summer days. Back to the screen – its more than 20 metres high and 26 metres wide – its absolutely huge, there is a good reason why the premium tickets right at the back of cinema are at that premium price which I realised after watching a preview clip of Avatar a few year back and being sat on the third row – the screen is absolutely huge and my field of vision was not big enough to see the whole screen without moving my head – its monstrous. The clarity of the screen is amazing and the sound is ridiculous. If there is a film you want to see and they are showing it at the BFI IMAX please watch it there – its the ultimate cinematic experience


The Rich Mix

35 – 47 Bethnal Green Road, E1 6LA
Ticket prices – £7.70 upwards

Located at the top of Brick Lane and built on the site of a former garment factory, The Rich Mix is by name as it is by nature. It is a cultural centre  built in 2006 the proceeds of which go back into the local community to support arts and education. The cavernous complex is set over 5 floors contains a cinema, theatre, bar, gallery and creative workspaces. The cinema has a “rich mix” of movies from the latest Hollywood releases, documentaries as well as world and arthouse cinema. As well as their 3 plush screens the venue has huge bar areas that host various DJ nights as well as having table tennis tables. Its also find myself in here catching a quick drink, a round of table tennis and bite to eat more than I do watching a movie


The Tricycle Theatre

269 Kilburn High Road  Kilburn, NW6 7JR
Ticket prices – £8 upwards

Keeping proceedings local to North Weezy (North West London for those that don’t know) The Tricycle Theatre like the Zabludowicz Collection is not simply a cinema its an creative arts space. Its Kilburn’s cultural centre. As well being a cinema, its a gallery, cafe and theatre. Just as Kilburn is known for its cultural diversity – The Tricycle is the same. Don’t expect to see any run of the mill movies here, the Tricycle is all about independent and worldwide cinema. I recently watched Mexico’s entry for this year’s Oscars – the amazing Miss Bala there as part of their International Film Season. The gallery and bar is also really great for a drink. I found myself in there quite a few times even when I’m not watching a movie.


The Ritzy Brixton

Brixton Oval, SW2 1JG
Ticket prices – £7.50 upwards

Brixton is a melting pot of cultures and vibes, there is something for everyone out there. From plush shops to people cooking jerk chicken out of an oil drum on the pavement, the variety that is available in Brixton right now is amazing and it brings out a certain vibe in the area that I love, it also has a cinema that suits is melting pot nature. From international film festivals, indie cinema to modern commercial releases – this 5 screen multiplex has them all. There is a wide array of screenings and exclusive screenings in the building – it was the first cinema in London to show The Raid pre-release and they were showing it back to back with John Woo’s Hard Boiled; I also saw the premiere of Werner Herzog’s Cave of Forgotten Dreams there and the man himself was in the building doing a post movie Q&A which was transmitted to over venues round the UK. The venue has a great cafe with outdoor seating, which is great for people watching, offering a wide array of food and drink like pizzas, curried goat (in true Brixton style), sandwiches, burgers and a whole lot more. The upstairs bar is also a music venue with a whole host of DJs playing jazz, roots, hip hop and afrobeat as well as bands and comedy nights. There is something for everyone at The Ritzy whether you are there for a movie, food or music – the place is great!!!


Ciné Lumière

17 Queensberry Place, SW7 2DT
Ticket prices – £8 upwards

This one is for all you lovers of European cinema. Part of the Institut français du Royaume-Uni the 240 seat Ciné Lumière shows the best in French, European and world cinema. It shows both classics and new releases, and regularly holds such special events as premières, retrospectives and themed seasons. Its definitely the place to look out for those slightly more obscure foreign movie releases.



Aubin Cinema

64-66 Redchurch Street, Shoreditch, E2 7DP
Ticket prices – £13 upwards

The impress a date award for this round of Cinematic London goes to……Aubin Cinema is part of the Shoreditch House, but you don’t have to be a member to attend the cinema. The small one screen cinema, located in the basement of the Aubin & Willis clothes store and art gallery, is super intimate holding only 45 people and has a mix of single seats velvet covered seats and 2 seater sofas with pillows and blankets which is what makes it perfect for a date. The bar serves a selection of wine, spirits, beers and snacks that can be taken into the screenings. The screenings are a mixture of modern releases and art house cinema, as its only one screen a single film will normally be played the whole week, being small the cinema is sometimes pretty busy and pre-booking is recommended just in case

Real laid back and super intimate kick back and put your feet up with a date – thank me later.


Cineworld O2 Arena

The O2, Peninsula Square, SE10 0DX
Tickets – £10.20 upwards

I’m not the biggest fan of Cineworld Cinemas, but this one located in the O2 Centre in Greenwich is pretty amazing. Being in Greenwich its pretty out of the way for me. I had basketball practice on Monday nights really close to there so it became my Monday night movie haunt. Let me tell you one thing Monday nights in the O2 Greenwich is like a ghost town there is next to one on there, and this is why I love this place. The main screen in the cinema is absolutely huge – second in size in the UK beaten by the BFI IMAX. The screen has a capacity of about 800, on a Monday evening maybe only about 30 of these get filled which is great – it can feel quite surreal being in a cinema that big and being so empty. There is plenty of leg space on the seats. I’ve only been to the immense main screen – I haven’t been to any of their other 10 screens. I haven’t got a clue what the place is like at any other time of the week, but I can imagine it being pretty hectic. If watching a movie on a huge empty screen is your thing then Monday nights at the Cineworld O2 Greenwich is for you


Thats all for this round of Cinematic London…..there are plenty more cinemas on my hit list and a few I didn’t mention in this issue so Cinematic London Part 3 will come around soon no doubt

By Tendai – Cognitive Space