Glasgow Film Theatre

Cinemas, Independent Central Glasgow
0 Love It
Save it
Glasgow Film Theatre

The city’s first – and last – arthouse cinema is the focal point for the annual Glasgow Film Festival

As any film buff in the city will take great pride in explaining to you, Glasgow was once one of Britain’s great cinema cities – by the end of the 1940s it boasted 114 in all, with a total seating capacity of more than 175,000. Glasgow Film Theatre (GFT), originally called the Cosmo until 1973, opened in 1939 as Scotland’s first arthouse cinema, and only the second purpose-built arthouse cinema in Britain after the Curzon Mayfair in London.

Today, it remains effectively Glasgow’s last arthouse cinema – the number of picture houses in the city having rapidly dwindled in the second half of the twentieth century. But it’s in rude health these days, as a non-profit organisation supported by Glasgow City Council, under the umbrella of Glasgow Film. A third screen was added to the GFT in 2013 to maximise capacity, particularly during the booming annual Glasgow Film Festival every February, for which it operates as the main hub cinema and buzzes with premieres and events.

It’s no exaggeration to say that discerning cinema-goers will always find something to see at GFT – from arthouse and foreign-language gems, to independent documentaries, late night cult screenings and classics back on the big screen. More than that, GFT is always an experience to visit purely in and of itself. From the dramatic exterior – a brown brick, geometric, windowless façade inspired by Dutch modernist architecture – to the deliciously retro interior, particularly the sweeping 394-seat main cinema, it’s truly unique. The loss of Café Cosmo, the GFT’s café-bar space, to make way for the third screen was unfortunate, and has left the GFT without a substantial social space. But there remains the smaller upstairs bar – so you can still enjoy a beer while watching cinema at its very finest.

By: Malcolm Jack

Posted:

Venue name: Glasgow Film Theatre
Contact:
Address: 12 Rose Street
Glasgow
G3 6RB
Transport: BR: Buchanan Steet. Underground: Cowcaddens
Do you own this business?
  • Another enjoyable fantasy adventure from Studio Ghibli, the animation house that gave us the delightful ‘Spirited Away’. This is not in the same class, but lovers of Miyazaki’s masterpiece will recognise the same worldview – essentially that of L...
    Read more
  • Is it possible to make a film that evokes both ‘Barry Lyndon’ and ‘National Lampoon’s European Vacation’? Sofia Coppola has had a decent stab at it. Her schtick in writing and directing this dreamy evocation of the Versailles life of Marie Antoine...
    Read more
  • Writer/director Moorhouse's striking first feature deals with blindness, but the opening shot of dark glasses, a white stick and a camera immediately signals its unorthodox approach. Although its main character is a blind photographer, its true su...
    Read more
  • Read more
  • Read more
  • Time Out says
    • 4 out of 5 stars
    Much creepy attention has been lavished on photos doing the rounds of Emma Watson pole dancing (Hermione’s legal!) in ‘The Bling Ring’. But the real story here isn’t the good-girl-goes-bad stunt casting; it’s that Watson can act. Against the odds,...
    Read more
  • Time Out says
    • 4 out of 5 stars
    This carefully crafted concert film plays it pretty straight with Björk’s September 2013 Alexandra Palace gig. That is, apart from the bits where we’re transported to an erupting volcano, the surface of the sun, or deep underwater among weirdly co...
    Read more
  • Margaret, Helen and Tibby Schlegel are bright, beautiful and, compared with most Edwardians, open-minded. The Wilcoxes, with the sole exception of Mrs Wilcox, are not. When Helen (Bonham Carter) carries a torch for Paul Wilcox (Bennett), she gets ...
    Read more
  • The first long shot of Howl’s castle, moving through the fog of an Alpine pasture, is a doozy: its bullfrog-battleship bulk huffing and chunting along on a set of sure-clawed chicken-legs, it’s the sort of organic-hydraulic hybrid at which Miyazak...
    Read more
  • Time Out says
    • 4 out of 5 stars
    You might already know how the evacuation of Dunkirk in May 1940 turned out: how over 300,000 mainly British troops escaped from the beach and harbour of a northern French port while being bombarded by the Nazis. But the power of Christopher Nolan...
    Read more

You may be interested in:

LiveReviews|0
2 people listening