Shhhhhhhhh. This a secret cinema. Dont’ tell anyone.
Secret? Yep. The location changes each time. You’ll only know a few days before the event where to go. The film remains untold until the very evening.
A little risky, I hear you say, given the ticket price: £18! Is it really worth it?
Well, I decide to give it a try for their Halloween session. The tone in the messages was – willingly - military: missions, recruits… We were asked to dress in white. Female recruits were not to wear dresses.
As soon as you get off the tube, you’ll find the others. Smiles are exchanged – we all know, dressed like that, that we’re going to the same place.An incredible white crowd. We’re a thousand, all in white. Add to that Halloween disguises – I’m a zombie/mad scientist. We’re managed, again very army-style. Instructions. Decontamination. Distribution of flashlights and white boilersuits. We all laugh. Imagine all those vampires, ghosts getting fressed in the street, helping each other, queing niceling. Drivers slow down, gasping. A window shows a space team having breakfast, getting ready to go out - white, glossy environment. A spaceship taking off is projected on the walls, sound included. From time to time a jeep arrives, unload more army guys in white suits.
You get in, per group. Sirens call, red light flashing, urgency, attention, instructions shoutes. Get ready. Fog, this si some kinf of adventure. You take steel ladders and corridors, go left, right, see astronauts getting ready on the way. You arrive in a dimmed room, two giant screens on the side, concret walls. More spationauts walking around, helmets on, flashlight in hand. In a corner a desolated landscape hads been recreates, giant eggs moving left and righr. Suddenly a shape appears on the form – greyish and shiny, threatening: an Alien like int he movie! With this glossy helmet trup of head and sharp teeths. All around us, green laser in which you walk in deep.
Further on is a kinf of canteen. Prices are high but profits go a charity. They sold, for the occasion, astronaut ice cream. Scientist work on the side on bloody and blueish pieces of meat. Whind a glass lay a man’s body, his head trapped by an alien. In a corner, the film traitor, a robot, lies in pieces, his head moaning a few words as in the iconic scene of the movie.
People mix - a real babylon tower, you’ll hear French, Spanish, German, Russian… Fab mood – people are happy to chat along, remebering the first time they saw the film, what they thought of the sequels, comparing with other classics of the era.
A few popcorns late – the queue was amazing - the film finally starts. Projection is excellent, the osund a bit too loud at first was quickly fixed. The chairs could be a little more comfortable – we’ll spen two hours there. Good leg room. Time just flies. I’m not particularly an Alien fan, but it also shows a aparticular time – make up, hair style… Classic scenes still get gasps and screams from the audience (me included) to everyone’s delight. The double-jawed monster could stand proud in todays productions – so modern, so convincing still! I wish they had done an Alien night, really, I would have liked to see the other twos in a row.
The screen turns black. The night continues with a DJ, light effects. The public stays quite happily, sit around a drink, dancing around.
Very atmospheric – the next session is on November 26. Just can’t wait.