How do you like your movies?
Screened under the stars, as part of art festivals or over a casual setting?
How do you like your movies? Yes, that's a question that needs proper self-evaluation. Do you like to slip into pyjamas and binge-watch, with a bag of crisps, on your couch? Or do you like to step out and hit the theatres with a tub of popcorn? Yes, the movie-watching experience has transformed - be it Netflix orAmazon Prime, we've embraced the way films are now reaching us. Fortunately, they're also running in multiplexes, at festivals to promote talent, and more. Let's look at how films are being served in our town.
Last week, a handful of lovers of the classic comedy Andaz Apna Apna got together at Malang Lounge, Business Bay, to share the laughs with those (strangers and friends) who are die-hard fans of the film. The setting was indoors with desi food for company.
Meanwhile, as part of the ongoing Ras Al Khaimah Fine Arts Festival, five productions by local and international filmmakers were shown at Al Hamra Mall's VOX Cinemas. The line-up included Happy Birthday, Temporary, Toshret, Dreaming Fish, and The Helmet. The screenings were part of the organisers' efforts to give everybody a chance to experience independent cinema as a community.
A huge promoter of all things cinema is good ol' Cinema Akil, Alserkal Avenue, Al Quoz. An independent cinema platform, they bring quality films from across the world to audiences here. Starting today, in collaboration with the Spanish Embassy to the UAE, they're running a Spanish Film Week (until February 20), showcasing seven award-winning Spanish films, including classics such as Spirit of the Beehive and The Holy Innocents, and contemporary classics such as Tesis and 7 Virgins. Spanish film director, screenwriter and actor Agustí Villaronga will also be present for a Q&A after the screening (today) of Pa Negre (directed by him).
The presence of the filmmakers and cast for an interaction post-screenings is another new flavour. Last month, a Pakistani crime thriller film, Lal Kabootar, was screened at NOVO Cinema, Ibn Batutta Mall, followed by a panel discussion with Kamil Chima, the co-producer and the female lead star, Mansha Pasha.
Whilst some of these offerings come without a ticket, most come with a price, and that's good for the arts and business, I guess. If you love the concept of films under the stars, head to Outdoor Cinema, Habtoor Grand Resort and Spa Hotel, Jumeirah Beach. On Saturday, you can catch Breakfast at Tiffany's and on Sunday watch A Star Is Born, followed by Free Solo on Monday. Of course, there will be beverages and snacks.
While you're at it, Bollywood lovers can drop by at the Matrix Fight Night 2020, Al Nasr Sports Club, (February 28) to catch up with stars Tiger Shroff and Shraddha Kapoor promoting the film, Baaghi. Or indulge in Roxy Ladies Night (Feb 18), Roxy Cinemas Platinum Plus screens, City Walk & The Beach, to watch Birds of Prey and The Room over mocktails and canapes.
I'm sure liking how the films are reaching us in novel ways, with arty frills. There's a good chance that we'll succeed in leaving the apps behind and share our love for cinema.