Nottingham has a wealth of fantastic cinemas, from the tiny to the megaplex. From stadium seating to a small living room. From nachos and cheese [sic] to fresh baked brownies. Check out Impact’s authoratative rundown.
Location: Broad Street, near Market Square, Hockley
Student Ticket: £4.20
Broadway LogoAccording to its website, the Broadway is ‘the home of Independent and world cinema in the East Midlands’, a modest claim – the Mansfield Odeon or the Stafford Cineworld don’t put up much of a fight – but one the place takes very seriously. With educational courses schooling in everything from Auteur directors to Woody Allen films back to French Political Cinema, retrospective documentaries on eminent twentieth-Century philosophers and a real active commitment to showcasing the great and the good of low-budget high-ambition movie-making across the globe, the Broadway is no dumb multiplex.
But don’t worry, it’s not all about discriminating between Truffaut or Godard, (although pretentious fun is to be had at the monthly film quiz), the Broadway also tussles with The Social as Nottingham’s hippest hotspot. Its two bars (the downstairs one spilling outside into a continental-style outdoor bistro) shimmer with filmic cool – Quentin Tarantino even chose to premier Pulp Fiction at the … film festival here, immediately after its winning of the Palm D’Or at Cannes. Two things that come with heavy Impact stamps of approval are the weekend matinees where kids classics such as the Goonies or the Witches are revisited and the sophisticated date’s meal+film eight quid deal.
The Broadway Cafe Bar is a popular place with students, with a relaxed atmosphere and friendly bar staff serving a diverse range of local and worldwide beers. The main menu changes daily to incorporate fresh and seasonal ingredients and there are vegetarian and vegan options available. Regular theme nights are held, serving up a specialized food and drinks menus and the Electric Lounge events provide live music and a great excuse to party!
Currently undergoing redevelopment Broadway will re-launch in October with two new screens (making four in total), two digital projectors for higher resolution print of film (one of the first cinemas in the country to use this technology) and a glass front that will host digital art projections, making Broadway an essential venue to visit during your stay in Nottingham.
Location: Broad Street, Hockley
Student Ticket: £4.10
On the same road as the Broadway Cinema, The Screen Room has just the one screen and plays similar films to its larger neighbour. Independent films often have a shorter run than mainstream movies and by the time you read that killer review or word of mouth has reached your ears, your chance to see the next Donnie Darko or Brick at other cinemas may have passed. The Screen Room can act like T4 Sunday, a second chance to see what you were too busy to see first time around. You save 50p each time you go if you become a member, which costs £2.50 for the year. The well received, Penelope-Cruz-starring Volver will be showing the first half of October and Terry Gilliam’s Tideland, in which Alice in Wonderland meets Psycho (apparently), will take us up ‘til November.
Location: Derby Road, next to Texaco
Student Ticket: £3.50
The best thing about the Savoy is that it’s in Lenton, ideal for off-campus students in the area. However this is also its worst attribute as you’re likely to bump into someone you at least vaguely know on every visit – not ideal for romantic dates. The cinema itself is rather simple, sporting an old-school design both internally and externally. There’s no desire to blow the audience away with booming speakers or overwhelming screens, making the experience stripped down and basic. Yet this is where its appeal lies – the Savoy is popular for those interested in seeing films locally and cheaply. While its drawback may be its restricted selection of new releases due to only having 4 screens (meaning films do not show for long periods), the cinema is famous for featuring ‘oldies’ that students are likely to have grown up with. Overall the Savoy is perfect for students living in Lenton yet everyone else may as well stay on the Rainbow 5 for an extra 10 minutes and get the luxury of the in-town cinemas.
Location: The Cornerhouse, off Market Square
Student Ticket: £4.30
Situated in the heart of the city centre, Cineworld boasts 12 massive screens spread over 2 floors of the Cornerhouse, Nottingham’s leading leisure and entertainment centre. The cinema shows a wide selection of the new releases at varying times to suit your schedules and epitomizes the familiar cinema experience – long queues, expensive confectionary, cup-holders between every seat, the lot. Cineworld’s location allows access to Nottingham’s vast array of restaurants, bars, and pubs, handy to go to before and/or after showings. It’s also visited by pretty much anyone – something to consider if you want to temporarily escape the on-campus student bubble. The high capacity means that you’re unlikely face sell-out showings providing you pre-book or arrive early, particularly on Wednesdays with a well-known mobile promotion. Being about a 15 minute walk from Lenton and a 15 minute bus ride from University Park it’s easily accessible, just don’t sit at the front!
Location: Clifton Boulevard, opposite ISIS
Student Ticket: £4.00
The best cinemas offer three things: comfy seats, tasty snacks, ace movies. Five minutes mosey from the South entrance of campus, on the same industrial wasteland as the now mythical meat-market megaclub Isis, the Showcase Cinema actually chooses to offer none of these. Instead its charm lies very much in its squalor.
The Delia Smith of Nottingham’s movie theatres, it possesses a homely feel which the UGC (Ainsley Harriott – popular but annoying), Broadway (Heston Blumenthal – sophisticated but snobby) and Screen Room (Anthony Worrall-Thompson – small, orange, unsightly, but well-meaning) can’t match. The choice of film runs from cheap schlock-horror, Tom ‘I like women. Women smell good. They look pretty’ Cruise blockbusters to frat-pack Ben Stiller/ Owen Wilson/Vince Vaughn/ Will Ferrell comedies.
Showcase is by far the least popular cinema for Nottingham students. Returners who have already sampled the legendary ISIS will know it’s a trek to get to – you can’t walk there and taxi rides seem to drag on a tad too long for liking. Moreover it’s not next to anything other than the A52. On the plus side viewing times and dates seem to extend slightly later and longer than most other cinemas, meaning that you won’t necessarily have to wait until the DVD comes out to watch a film you’ve missed it everywhere else. If you own a car there’s nothing stopping you from going here, but if not there’s no reason you’d choose this over the others.
Tom Peck and Paul Cooney with guest humour from Noel Titheradge