11 May 2012

MS Ali Road

Love, Sex and Multiplex. Now showing at single screen theaters of old Mumbai.

"Love, Sex and Multiplex" announced the glossy poster in a decaying single screen movie theater on Maulana Shoukath Ali Road. If you are the owner of one of these screens which has seen "those" days of the filmi magic, the detached, packaged and sterile movie going experience of the multiplex that's killing his business must look like an idea that must be demonised.

When I lived in Bangalore between 2007 and 2009, and I first started shooting streets, one of my favourite places to shoot was Kempegowda Road (images here), named after the founder of that city. I used to go there every Friday, in the morning and walk around the single screen theaters there because that was the day the Sandalwood (Kannada film industry) movies would release. There, the movie halls retain a small piece of the magic of the days before Television knocked the movie screening business down. (See the Sandalwood Friday Morning Release Story here and Black Market ticket sellers of Majestic)

Like Maulana Shoukath Ali Road and surroundings, the Kemepegowda Road area (popular called as the Majestic Area, after one of the many theaters that existed in that area), had a few dozen theaters. Unlike MS Ali Road, Kempegowda Road still maintains to survive, for now. I don't know which area had more theaters - this one in Mumbai, Bangalore or was it in Hyderabad or Chennai?

I had clicked this images when I had gone for a walk with Rafiq, who conducts regular walks here. His father used to work with one of the Film Studios of the 40s and 50s and told us stories about the many theaters that existed here and some that still exist. The ones that showed Hollywood films in the mornings and in which movie hall, he saw what iconic movie.

Meanwhile here are the images of what's hot here at the moment. These are for people who, if they see the price of fresh pop corn (Rs 5/- only on our station platforms and single screens), will agree with the title - Love, Sex And Multiplex.

"Love, Sex and Downloads". Outside a theater for the single screen theater in your pocket.

The list of movies here for those who can't read Devnagari:
Maidan-e-Jung (battlefield),
Mr. Badmash (Mr. naughty (?)),
Jung (War),
Prem Jung (Love War),
Kranti (revolution),
Nageen Ka Inteqaam,
Meri Maa Ko Bachao (save my mother - the cow in this case)
And that gentlewoman showing off her brassiere is screaming -
Ma Kassam! Sabse badla loongie (I swear on my mother that I shall  have my revenge against everyone)


Marijke said...

Imnot that smart whats a single screen???

Gopal M S said...

Single screen movie theater as opposed to a multiplex with multiple screens.

Anonymous said...

Love the gentlewoman!

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