My experience at The Picturehouse

Scenes from Nowhere Boy

Scenes from Nowhere Boy

My previous post was about the mini British and Emirati film festival brought to us by British Council in Dubai which was good news to me and many film fans here. I went to The Picturehouse (the arthouse cinema at Reel Cinemas in Dubai Mall on Saturday to watch Nowhere Boy and Solo and left feeling disappointed. It wasn't the films, they were very good, but it was lack of care and attention to the projection quality.

Basically, the top part of the two films were cropped off the cinema screen because of projection issues and bad alignment. I had to take a few photographs as evidence to share with you here and the cinema. (I was the only one there and I normally don't condone taking photos during a screening.)

I complained during the screening to get it fixed. Nothing changed. After the screening, I spoke to the manager and he blamed the distributor (based on the information from the British Council website, I believe the distributor is Front Row Entertainment).

Scene from Solo

I don't know the technicalities of the projection room, but surely this isn't acceptable. It's not like Reel Cinemas just opened yesterday. They have over 20 screens and if this is the standard, I'm appalled. It's disrespectful to the filmmakers and audience.

Dear British Council, Front Row Entertainment, Reel Cinemas - I don't know who is at fault here, but please sort this out to avoid the same problem over the next seven weeks. We struggle to get non-Hollywood movies to screen at our cinemas, and if this is the effort that goes into this mini film festival, we're better off projecting films on a white sheet in our backyards.

More scenes from Nowhere Boy. See what I mean about the cropped parts at the top of the screen?