I went to the pub on Tuesday night, and I didn't go for a pint. No. I went to watch a film. For free.
Granted, it's not the usual choice of activity in a pub, but it was by no means less fun. On Tuesday nights, the Newtown Hotel (174 King Street) screens films for free in their cosy top floor cinema. Don't expect to see any current releases as these are strictly cult classics. Having said that, It's a good opportunity to catch up on films that may have passed you by, and re-watch favourites on a big screen.
This week's flick was 70's action thriller The Warriors where a New York gang is framed for murder, and has to escape the city whilst being pursued by every gang and cop in the metropolis. Next week's choice (as at the time of writing this) is Escape from New York, continuing the theme of antiheroes escaping the nefarious New York. Upcoming films for the month can be seen on a blackboard outside and on the website.
Due to the cheap ticket and a mere 18 seats, I recommend you arrive early to guarantee a good spot. Not that there are any terrible views. The seating options range from sofas at the front to repurposed classic cinema chairs in the middle, to a row of elevated bean bags at the back.
A free cup of salty popcorn was available, and whilst there was mention of choc tops, they were (sadly) nowhere to be seen. Films are screened on a projector from DVD which still look surprisingly great when blown up with a decent sound system to boot.
When I think about seeing a film in a pub I'd expect a load of drunk people chatting and shouting throughout. I couldn't have been more delighted to find the crowd a quiet bunch of film buffs. You don't need to know your Ridley Scotts from your Spike Jonzes to enjoy the films as the selection appeals to a wide range of tastes. The films, however, are not kid friendly - therefore it is inadvisable to bring companions under the drinking age. Except for an unfortunate hiccup with a scratch on the disc that was soon rectified, the viewing experience was far better than I ever expected.
For the price and the quality of films, I know I'll be back to see plenty more. As for you, I propose one question in the words of Cyrus, the leader of the Gramercy Riffs in 'The Warriors': "Can you dig it?"
Where: Newtown Hotel - 174 King Street
Newtown NSW 2042
Why: Good, free films in a decent space.
When: Tuesday Nights at 19:00