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Albéniz Cinema - Malaga

Malaga’s iconic cinema has re-opened its doors on Calle Alcazabilla to some of the best movies of all time. Four screening rooms with a permanent programme jam-packed with European films, original version movies with subtitles, Spanish cinema, thematic cycles, festivals, retrospectives, and advanced 3D technology. Cinema has returned to Malaga!

By:  Lakshmi I. Aguirre
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Malaga cinema
Birth: 1945
Location: Malaga
Stands out for: a programme of independent cinema
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In May 2009 news reached the streets of Malaga that the Albéniz Cinema was closing due to the expropriation of the cinema by the town hall. “Those who love high quality cinema in Malaga are going to be left stranded as of Sunday,” declaimed the local newspaper Diario Sur. The feeling was felt across the city. Since 1945 the cinema had been a meeting point for film buffs eager to watch the hundreds of independent films that had been premiered on the screens located in this emblematic building on calle Alcazabilla.

There were protests and fans created blogs and forums on the Internet. One of these was the Foro Malagueño por la Cinemateca that started it’s life online with several videos starring people who reached the doors of the cinema only to find that its doors were closed. “We are worried about the recent closure of the Albeniz Cinema. Your audience and your Malaga haven’t forgotten you,” declared several obituaries.

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One year and nine million euros later, the doors of this historic building that was created in the midst of the postwar period, have been opened again under new direction: The Malaga Spanish Film Festival. To celebrate the opening they have new plans for the programme. “We want to ensure that locals get the chance to enjoy the best and most prestigious films in their original version in the centre of Malaga,” explains Juan Luis Artacho, the director of programming and communication at the Albeniz Cinema.

That’s why Wes Anderson, François Ozon, André Techiné, Goran Paskaljevic and Hirokazu Kore-eda are just some of the directors whose films can be seen at the revamped cinema. You can also catch Spanish films (Que se mueran los feos, Rabia, Familystrip, Habitación en Roma, La mirada de Ouka Leele…) and the latest 3D movies. One of the additions to the facilities in the recent refit has been the addition of 3D equipment in the new and improved Albeniz Cinema.

The good news has provoked a bittersweet reaction amongst film lovers in Malaga. Suspicion has been predominant in a city used to cultural disappointment, but bit by bit the audience is regaining its confidence. To celebrate a new era the organizers have tried to implicate locals with the cinema by creating the Club Albéniz: “we decided that it was important to have a direct relationship with film buffs in the area in order to be able to communicate directly and allow them to participate in the programming,” explains Artacho. Feedback? “Our members specifically requested that we screen the 2010 Oscar winning documentary The Cove. We did. As far as possible we hope to bring films that locals want to see,” promises the director of programming.

The first Polish Film Festival in Malaga was one of the first festivals to take place at the cinema and there are plans afoot to include “a cinema and jazz festival, flamenco festival, a Hindu cycle, the Costa del Sol International Fantastic Film Festival and we hope to kick-start several thematic cycles focused on particular directors and countries such as Italy, France, Finland, Brazil and Japan amongst others”. With a bar on the ground floor and a screening room that fits 350 people, the Albeniz Cinema is an ideal venue for such events.

Nearby, the Alcazaba rises magestic over the city, offering a spectacular backdrop for the seventh art. The recently restored Roman Theatre and the reforms planned for calle Alcazabilla augur positive changes for the area frequented by locals who provide ample business for the surrounding bars and restaurants, as well as the box office of the cinema.

Getting there?

Cine Albéniz
C/ Alcazabilla, 4
Málaga, Málaga

Price: €5-€9.
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Members club Club Albéniz
Discounted prices (except for 3D projections), invitations to premiers and weekly newsletter for all members of Club Albéniz. Sign up online.

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1 comment

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El 20 September 2010 a las 4:54 PM, Maria dijo...

En el Albeniz di mi primer beso a mi pareja,cual pareja de los años 70… Asi que es una buena noticia que no tiren el escenario de mi recuerdo
Un saludo!

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