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A basement stairwell lit up with suggestive neon signs.
Photograph: Courtesy of ABC

Melbourne's longest-running adult cinema is closing after 50 years

While the neon-lit basement will no longer be screening porno flicks, it'll have a new life as a retail space

Adena Maier
Written by
Adena Maier

Lit up by lewd neon signs and plastered with suggestive posters, Crazy Horse Cinema is hard to miss. The basement-level adult theatre on Elizabeth Street has been screening pornography for more than 50 years, with many punters taking advantage of its $20 all-day ticket offer. Sadly, its reign as Melbourne's longest-running purveyor of adult movies – and, according to the ABC, our city's longest, continuously running cinema – is coming to an end. 

The cinema, which is located in the basement below Club X sex shop, was previously known as the Star Theatre before being bought and rebranded in 1985. And while it did become infamous for screening exploitation and sexploitation films, it's also recognised by film historians for its historical contributions. Visitors could also catch amateur movies shot on 16mm film of local events like sports matches and news reruns, and a lot of that footage has since been catalogued by the National Film and Sound Archive. 

The exact date of closing has not been determined yet, but Crazy Horse is expected to conclude its screenings in the next month or so. In its place, Club X co-owner Kenneth Hill plans to open an adult shop retail space. 

Looking to spice things up a bit? Here are the best sex shops in Melbourne.

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