Comments from Zappomatic

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Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Cineworld Cinema - The O2 Greenwich on Jan 31, 2018 at 11:14 pm

Foyer refurb update: shiny plastic strips have been fixed to the ceiling, mirroring the pattern on the floor below. I’m now wondering if we’ll see the usual big red star on the ceiling after all, given there’s one on the wall by the escalator. LED screens appear to be complete but aren’t active yet.

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Cineworld Cinema - Leicester Square on Jan 31, 2018 at 5:41 pm

Looks like some renumbering of the screens is going on, as The Greatest Showman Sing-A-Long is now bookable from 23 February in screen 5 except the seating plan matches the layout of screen 7. I guess with a clean slate there’s no reason to keep the Superscreen and IMAX as screens 1 and 3 respectively.

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Cineworld Cinema - Leicester Square on Jan 29, 2018 at 11:16 pm

I wonder if there will be a 4DX version of Fifty Shades? ;)

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Cineworld Cinema - Leicester Square on Jan 29, 2018 at 9:40 pm

Fifty Shades Freed is bookable in the Superscreen (shudder) from 9 February and Black Panther in the IMAX from 13 February. No obvious changes to the seat maps in these screens.

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Cineworld Cinema - The O2 Greenwich on Jan 29, 2018 at 7:49 pm

Visited the O2 again today. Installation of the LED displays in the foyer is almost complete but they’re not switched on yet. Ticket machines and Unlimited kiosks still not installed. Access to the upper level isn’t ideal at the moment – with both escalators out of action.

I saw Coco in screen 6 which due to the shape of the building is a reasonably wide but relatively shallow auditorium where the steeply raked stadium section starts fairly close to the screen (three rows at floor level which I think are far too close to the screen). In common with most of the screens here it’s not a curved screen, which combined with the silver coating makes for noticeable hot-spotting. Great sound though and really manages to hit some very low frequencies.

It would seem they’ve have been listening to the complaints about light levels, as the auditorium was suitably dark. The white strips in the floor at the entrance are nicely dimmed during the feature with no light spilling up the walls or onto the screen, and the ceiling lights have honeycomb baffles which completely cut out glare and keep light levels sensible. Even when the lights were brought up to mid-level during the credits they didn’t affect the screen. Also pleased to note that the illuminated fire exit signs don’t cast their green glow on the screen which has been a problem at this cinema in the past.

Screens 6-10 were refurbished after 1-5 and the Superscreen so I’m not sure if this is something that they’ve gone back and changed in all the screens or if they changed the specs and design before the work was started. Certainly an improvement on my visit for Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.

Regarding Vue West End, the foyer looks nice but the exterior work looks shoddy and half-finished, particularly the canopy over the exit in Leicester Court which last time I passed through was dented, with flaking paint and parts missing.

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Cineworld Cinema - Hammersmith on Jan 26, 2018 at 11:14 pm

And some more https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7dYGIl8b1Yo

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Cineworld Cinema - Hammersmith on Jan 26, 2018 at 11:06 pm

Footage from the MGM Hammersmith in 1995 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Rs3RhrGyqE

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Cineworld Cinema - Chelsea on Jan 26, 2018 at 11:18 am

A rare photo of the cinema as an MGM: https://rbkclocalstudies.files.wordpress.com/2017/08/kings-road-south-side-mgm-cinema.jpg

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Odeon Luxe London Leicester Square on Jan 25, 2018 at 10:14 pm

Nope. I’m not going mad! http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/first-night-disney-genie-conjures-a-childrens-delight-aladdin-odeon-leicester-square-1505204.html

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Odeon Luxe London Leicester Square on Jan 25, 2018 at 10:12 pm

I remember being taken to see Disney’s Aladdin as a pre-Christmas treat in 1993 and there being a brief stage show before the film. From memory it was mostly a costumed cast dancing to songs from the film (or am I going mad?)

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Odeon London Covent Garden on Jan 25, 2018 at 2:31 pm

The condition report is an interesting read – love the photo of the abandoned bar area looking very 1960s/70s!

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Cineworld Cinema - The O2 Greenwich on Jan 18, 2018 at 5:12 pm

Installation of the LED ribbon display in the foyer continues at a glacial pace… as of last night there were power cables hanging out of the wall where previously there were none! Ticket machines and Unlimited kiosks still not installed.

Coke dispensers have now been replaced by Pepsi, rolling out across the chain. Lavazza replaces Coffee Republic and the cups have shrunk drastically, for which Cineworld are rightly getting a pasting for on Twitter (I had an interesting email exchange with their customer services department where the agent denied that the new cups are smaller).

In screen 3 last night, three out of the eight obnoxiously bright and glaring LED downlights in the ceiling were off – not sure if this is a response to complaints about light levels or if they’ve just died a premature death.

The refurbished corridors feel wider than before. It took me a while to work out why – the old curved wood effect door surrounds stuck out a lot more than the new ones, which are incredibly brightly backlit in red. Slight design flaw in that the screen number is only on the outside of the enclosure, but some of the screen entrances are side by side eg. screen 2’s number is obscured by the entrance to screen 3.

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Cineworld Cinema - The O2 Greenwich on Jan 13, 2018 at 6:24 pm

The Superscreen at the O2 certainly sounds good, but it’s not quite on a par with its counterpart in Leicester Square (not helped by the acoustics). My point of reference is the Dolby Atmos “Unfold” trailer – the larger room means the separation is a lot more effective at the O2 but it lacks the sheer depth, warmth and immersion achieved in Leicester Square.

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Cineworld Cinema - Leicester Square on Jan 11, 2018 at 11:10 pm

I saw a film in screen 4 on 30 December (side masking not used, grr!) and hadn’t been back until 7 January (The Greatest Showman, Superscreen), so some time between those dates.

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Cineworld Cinema - The O2 Greenwich on Jan 11, 2018 at 11:07 pm

Fortunately the backlit panels by the escalator look a bit more evenly lit in person, but they’re not perfect.

When the lights are dimmed for the main feature, the hula hoops near the entrances to the screen remain quite visible thanks to the bright white lights in the floor shining up and casting shadows. It’s not particularly distracting but doesn’t seem intentional! More positively the downlighters under the balcony are all fitted with honeycomb baffles.

Zooming in on my original photos the sidewall speakers appear to be JBL.

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Cineworld Cinema - Leicester Square on Jan 11, 2018 at 9:45 pm

On the Cineworld website I’m seeing a banner stating that the cinema is closed and to visit Picturehouse Central. It’s served as an ad so if you’ve got an ad blocker running you probably won’t see it.

They had Tensabarriers in front of the doors to screens 4 and 5 and had moved the saggy leather sofas from around the foyer to be in front of them just to drive the message home! (Made the mistake of sitting on one of those a few months ago, was very hard to get back up again)

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Cineworld Cinema - The O2 Greenwich on Jan 10, 2018 at 8:04 pm

Refurbishment still ongoing! In the foyer the power bus and fixings for the LED displays have been installed, totally surrounding the whole space. Ticket machines have not yet been installed and thereMs still an absence of seating.

In the Superscreen they’re installing what look like giant hula hoops on the side walls, presumably these will light up once this work is complete as they take the place of the wires previously hanging out of the wall. (Photo added). They’re not perfectly round so look a bit shoddy!

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Odeon Luxe London Leicester Square on Jan 9, 2018 at 1:30 pm

Today is Odeon Leicester Square’s last day before closing for refurbishment. Kind of surprised they’re not keeping the Studios open as they’re pretty much self contained and were refurbished fairly recently. With Cineworld also closed, Vue must be rubbing their hands with glee at a whole month without any competition on the square (nearby Odeon Luxe Haymarket and Empire Haymarket notwithstanding)!

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Cineworld Cinema - Leicester Square on Jan 7, 2018 at 5:32 pm

Noticed in the cinema state that it’ll be closed from tomorrow until 6 February. The doors to screens 4 and 5 have been blocked with sofas and the foyer generally feels tired and ready for the refurb.

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Cineworld Cinema - Leicester Square on Jan 4, 2018 at 1:24 am

Contrary to the email I posted above, this cinema’s last day before closing for refurbishment works will be Sunday 7 January.

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Empire Cinemas - London Haymarket on Jan 2, 2018 at 7:40 pm

Licensing variation application made to serve alcohol from two additional locations (presumably main kiosk and upstairs kiosk), and also to allow alcohol to be consumed in all screens.

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Cineworld Cinema - Weymouth on Dec 26, 2017 at 2:13 pm

My post last month has an error in it… adults are £6, not £14!

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Cineworld Cinema - The O2 Greenwich on Dec 20, 2017 at 12:31 am

Just back from my first visit here in a while. The disruptive part of the refurbishment work seems to be over with toilets and the usual access routes to the screens reinstated.

Barring some cladding to the outside of the lift all traces of the previous decor have gone from the foyer. In common with other new or refurbished Cineworlds it features a glossy, sparkly red and black floor (which must be fun when wet!) and dark grey walls and ceilings. Lighting is by way of red and blue spotlights in the ceiling which interesting seem to use a coloured filter glass rather than a coloured or colour changing LED. Previously round pillars have had their cladding stripped back so they’re now square and much more compact, and their corners are lit with incredibly bright cyan LEDs (which burn into your retina when leaving a dark screen). The wall behind the escalator is lit with backlit coloured squares plus a red star. So far no sign of the typical ribbon of LED display or ceiling-suspended red star but it’s obvious where these are going to go.

Brand new concessions counter with Blockbusters style red, white and black hexagonal tiles at the back and a very bright and colourful internally lit counter. All menus etc are displayed on a continues strip of LCD displays. The standalone Baskin Robbins ice cream counter has been removed and integrated into the run of the main counter, freeing up circulation space in the foyer.

What was once the bar is now yet more circulation space and there’s wiring and signage ready for a long row of ticket machines under the escalator. Clearly this is an exercise in preparing for greater volumes of people passing through once the extension opens. Hopefully they’ll add some seating as at the moment there is nothing to sit on whilst waiting.

Toilets have been refurbished to a good standard with a similar layout to before however they now have a door at the entrance – you did sometimes get toilet whiffs in the corridor previously!

Tinkering with the Superscreen continues – the Dolby Atmos installation sounds good however there are still random white wires hanging out of the walls at high level so maybe more to come? The original blue ribbons of light across the ceiling have gone, replaced by red-lit troughs containing speakers. The 2007-vintage plethora of cold white LED downlighters has been replaced by a smaller number of more modern warm-white ones. Surprisingly given Cineworld’s apparent mania for over-illuminating screens, these are an improvement: under the old set up most of them would stay on during the film at a very low level, including a row right in front of the screen. With the new ones only the spots above stairs and walkways stay on, dim enough so as not to have any negative impact. Stair edges are well lit in red.

I’ll reserve judgement on how I feel about the refurb when the extension is done. At the moment in its unfinished state it feels like a cheapening of the space, because the unusually plush bar area added a more grown-up feel to things. But I guess it would be fair to say that the main foyer area was becoming a little stale.

Photos added.

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about ABC Westover Bournemouth on Dec 14, 2017 at 11:50 pm

That would be Score by Richard Myhill. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bnqhK9ZwY2E

Zappomatic
Zappomatic commented about Cineworld Cinema - Leicester Square on Dec 14, 2017 at 9:34 pm

Cineworld sent out an email to Unlimited members with Leicester Square set as their favoured cinema. Text below:

Dear Zappomatic,

We are contacting you because you have Cineworld Leicester Square listed as your favoured cinema.

Exciting news! Cineworld Leicester Square will be undergoing a refurbishment in the new year, so you’ll be able to enjoy all of your favourite films in our new look cinema.

So that we can look our best as soon as possible, Cineworld Leicester Square will temporarily closed from Wednesday 10th January 2018 until early February for some of the works to take place. We’re sorry for the inconvenience this will cause, and to make up for us being out of action in January, we would like to let you know that your January Unlimited membership is on us!

If you pay annually, we will credit your account with an additional month of Unlimited membership. If you pay monthly we’ll apply a one month credit to your account in January.

We’re looking forward to welcoming you back to Cineworld Leicester Square soon. In the meantime, our other London cinemas at Cineworld Fulham Road, Cineworld The O2, Cineworld West India Quay, Cineworld Wandsworth, Cineworld Enfield, Cineworld Ilford, Cineworld Wood Green, Cineworld Bexleyheath, Cineworld Feltham, Cineworld South Ruislip and Cineworld Wembley will all be open as usual.

Thank you,

The Cineworld Team