Walking around Marrakesh we found an old cinema with brilliant retro film posters outside. We stood admiring it and then a guy invited us in to look around. The forecourt was filled with amazing movie posters from many years ago, it had been just 40dh to visit before the place had stopped showing films because of the big out-of-town cinema just outside Marrakesh.
It’s such a shame places like this shut down, but that’s just commercialism isn’t it. Why would you go and watch a film in uncomfortable seats with bad sound when you could go to the multiplex down the road. The guy there told us he was trying to keep it open as a museum, so we gave him a few dirhams towards it.
There had been a campaign to Save Cinemas in Morocco, but it hadn’t worked.
Inside there were two tiers of seats facing the screen. It was lovely and cool in there away from the African sun, but those seats did not look comfortable.
Wouldn’t fancy a three-hour epic sat in those chairs, even if it is only 40dh.
We managed to get in the projection room at the back. It was up some winding stairs and the room was amazing. It was all still in place with the reels of film half in the projector. Waiel is a film buff and was pretty much wetting himself with excitement. The room looked like it came from the ‘Golden Age of Cinema’. It was cool to see how cinemas used to be and to see somewhere other people might’ve missed in Marrakesh. It was also a great way to get out the heat and craziness of the Jamaa el Fna.