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Film Weekly article, 13th June 1931

0. Golf at the Cinema
1. Filmgoing by Air
2. Same Seat for Ten Years
3. At Bargain Prices

At Bargain Prices

Accustomed to sacrificing three-and-six for a poor seat in London cinemas, it seemed incredible to me that I could get a really good seat for a shilling in any Glasgow cinema, and that the highest price demanded anywhere is three shillings.
But this is not all.
A Mr John MacAlister (may his tribe increase) is busy building cinemas over his native land in which the very most the spendthrift Scot will be able to squander on a double-feature, musical interlude, three-hour movie programme is sixpence.

I went to the Astoria, Possil Road, to make sure of those facts. John MacAlister has done the job thoroughly - to avoid any temptation the "automatickets" in the box office don't register a higher figure than sixpence. In the afternoon you can go anywhere in the stalls or "area" for threepence, and 6d. in the balcony. Evening prices are 4d., 5d., and 6d.

Nor has Mr MacAlister provided anything second-rate in the way of cinema at these amazing prices. The Astoria is as luxuriously fitted out as any of our West End London cinemas.
I wish Mr MacAlister would come down south awhile.


A Twopenny Cinema

But in Scotland threepence is threepence for a' that, and some of these kilty lads will go anywhere to save a penny. At all events, the Queen's Theatre, Watson Street, undercuts admission fees at the Astoria. The Queen's advertise pictures and variety for the sum of twopence.
So far I have not found Britain's ideal cinema, but I have learnt one thing at least - that creating the ideal cinema is by no means the easy enterprise that we outside the cinema world would believe it is.
The cinema manager has far more problems to contend with in his endeavours to please the public than I ever dreamed.
When I continue my exploration of the cinema through Britain next week I shall have more respect for the 4,500 cinema managers, each one of whom is sincerely trying to create in his own hall Britain's ideal cinema.

(Next week: "In Sedate Edinburgh.")

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