If the Prince Charles Cinema is cheap and cheerful, then the Renoir is expensive and serious. And rather posh as well. London’s Repertory Cinema’s can be very ra-ra, a place for the good and great to meet up and quaff champagne. Of course, if you are like me, and actually work in the evenings, then you go in the daytime, when the ticket prices are cheaper and the posh bunnies are all ‘working’ trying to dick over the rest of the city in their value-exploiting careers.
You can see that I am a little bit class conscious, definitely coming from the other side of the tracks. But never mind, everyone came to the cinema, and despite being a Wednesday day, the cinema was quite well filled up. Mainly retirees, we all took our seats and watched the crazy antics on the screen.
As I said, the Renoir is very posh. But quite a new cinema. A lot of London’s Cinema halls have a long history, but the Renoir is dated to its surroundings in the Brunswick Centre. A council estate built in the 1970’s, this at one time was not a nice place. Bloomsbury used to be my stomping grounds a decade ago, but this is only the second time I have gone into the Brunswick Cinema. So while I used the facilities of Brunswick. Everything from the old Safeway to the dodgy Chai bar in he corner of the shopping centre. And when I was a young lad, it was a really grotty part of the world. Dirty grey, with the residents, trapped like animals throwing missiles at the passer-by’s below. But the gentrification of the Noghties swept right through this place, and now the Brunswick Centres is one of the more fashionable hang suites in London.
Come in, think about it. In the heart of Bloomsbury, this hip part of zone 1 has the tube nearby and the West End a 15 minute walk away. If there was one part of London that was going to transform rapidly, it would be this part of town. Hey, if I had money at the time, I would not have spent it on exotic holidays and chewing gum to try and impress the ladies. I would have spent it on property!
As for the Renoir itself, it is located underneath the Brunswick Centre. And it has always been a place for high brow cinema. Now part of the Curzon chain, this Repertory Cinema has always been amongst London’s finest for showing the most recent cutting edge films. There is a loyal crowd that venture to the flicks, and to be honest, it does have a nice ambience. Being in the basement, the cinema is unmistakeably dated from the 1960’s/70’s, but the auditoriums are big and spacious, and technically, everything works great. Just got to say that the seats are uncomfortable, but you cannnot have everything. But remember, I do not go to the cinema for the surroundings, but for what is shown on screen.
And what was the film that I saw? Ah, you have to wait until tomorrow for me to tell you that…