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Jerusalem of celluloidby michael • August 29 2008
Movie lovers cram together at the Jerusalem Film Festival
With the summer excitement of the Jerusalem Film Festival long past, movie fanatics in the city have to look elsewhere for their fix of cinematic magic - and the situation on the ground isn't always encouraging. Jerusalemites love movies (thus the perennial success of the Film Fest), but the number of decent venues in which to see them is on the wane. All of downtown's theaters have been long boarded up. The main first-run theaters, the Rav Chen out in Talpiot and the Globus Theater even further out in Malcha, are thinly-staffed, cramped, ill-equipped and magnets for the worst kind of cinema-goer. If it weren't for the sophisticated offerings of the Cinematheque and the left-field indie flicks screened at the Lev Smadar, local film buffs might just have to - perish the thought - descend to Tel Aviv for decent flicks on decent screens with decent sound.
Even the Jerusalem Post has taken note of the state of affairs, devoting a whole article to the local cinema scene:
Particularly harsh rhetoric is aimed at the Globus Theater in Malcha:
Israelis are notorious for their willingness to embrace mediocrity in certain areas, but there is hope for those who want to see big-name movies in civilized theaters. The Tel Aviv area has seen several American-style multiplexes open in recent years, and market forces being what they are, they'll inevitably migrate to Jerusalem and force out dinosaurs like Globus (although people will still leave their cell phones on). And in the meantime, the Cinematheque and the Smadar should keep you going.
Image courtesy of the Jerusalem Cinematheque.
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