“ Address: 10 Pilgrim Street / Newcastle upon Tyne / NE1 6QG / England „
Tyneside is a very special cinema that everyone wishes they had but unfortunately don't. It mainly shows independent and foreign films some of which you might be hard pressed to find a dvd of let alone see in a mainstream cinema. They do occasionally show blockbuster films here, for instance Lord of the Rings, Indiana Jones and Watchmen have all received showings here.
Their prices are about the same as mainstream cinemas except that their student prices are generously about half the price. You get much more for your money here, because their seats are very comfy and in one screen they actually have sofas you can sit on to watch the film.
The Tyneside also runs two places to drink, a stylish bar downstairs that serves cocktails and a cosy tearoom upstairs. The tearoom is a nice place during the day, selling the usual jacket potatoes and what not at cheap prices. The bar on the other hand is a great place to have a drink before or after watching your film in the evening.
10 Pilgrim Street
Newcastle upon Tyne
Tyne and Wear
Box Office: 0845 217 9909
The Tyneside Cinema in Newcastle Upon Tyne is an independant movie house. They specialise in screening movies that won't necessarily be available to see at your Odeon, Vue or Empire cinemas. Foriegn films, independently financed films, locally produced films and arty films that are critically acclaimed although have a reduced commercial appeal are commonly shown. In addition to these the cinema now also usually shows one main movie that will normally also be showing at a local cinema, although this film will normally tend to have some kind of cult appeal. The cinema also occaisonally shows older movies or director cut versions of classic or cult films.
The cinema is conveniently located in Pilgrim's street which is very close to Newcastle's main shopping area. The road is straight up from the main Northumberland Street. Public transport links nearby are the Metro - Monument stop is the nearest and is literally around the corner. There is also Central Station ten minutes away where buses, taxis and trains pick up and alight. Haymarket bus station is also nearby and easiest for those coming into the city from the North. Car parks are also found at New Bridge Street and John Dobson Street.
The cinema has always been a favourite place of mine and given the choice of going to see the same film here or at my local Empire I'd choose this place every time. Why? Well, this place seems to attract a very lively, talkative, intellectual crowd who make the atmosphere that much more comfortable and stimulating. It is not unusual before a movie to strike up conversation with strangers going to see the same film. People seem to want to talk about the films being screened and that is very exciting to me.
The cinemas 'The Tyneside Coffee Rooms' are an intimate, happy place where you feel much more valued as a customer than if you were collecting your popcorn and coke from the counter at the Odeon! There is a 'homely' menu with coffee and cakes a popular choice. It is located on the second floor and has a mix of comfortable plush chairs and streamline tables. There is a kind of quirkiness about the place - the staff seem very chirpy and once again the customers are eager to chat. The cafe also sometimes sell oddities at the till like fridge magnets depicting certain classic movie characters.
There is also a coffee bar on the lower floor, street level, the 'intermezzo cafe' which has a more cosmopolitan atmosphere and is bedecked with high legged, slightly uncomfortable stools. They sell snacks and cakes. It is usually very busy in this area. There is also a third bar where you can get drinks, snacks and listen to live music. I would say as a slight criticism that since the cinema reopened after undergoing development that it looks less like a cinema from the street than it does a large restaurant. Infact it is difficult to access any area where it tells you what films are currently showing.
There are four screens in the cinema, each their own size and with a different style. There is a lift to all floors for wheelchair users. Each cinema space also has automatic doors and designated spaces for wheelchairs inside. The most luxurious screening area is considered to be the 'Classic Screen' which has plush leather, numbered seats which can be reserved.
Tickets cost around the same as they do at your blockbuster cinema chains (£5.75 to £6.70) but is a little more expensive in the Classic Screen Cinema for reserved seating. There is a silver screen club for those who are over 60 years old which awards special discounts. Tickets can be booked online or bought at the office inside the main building.
I would definately reccomend going to this cinema as it is a very different experience to going to well known cinema chains. It always makes me feel like I've come to a place where there are my kind of people, like-minded, with a common interest in films or a particular film.