Havana’s Neighborhood Movie Theaters


Photo Featre by Ariel Glaria Enriquez

HAVANA TIMES — In ruins, like defenseless ghosts in the whirlwind of a city that grew with them, neighborhood movie theaters no longer tell us stories, but they resist being left completely empty inside. Maybe it’s their last attempt to save us from sinking into a dream-void state.

The following photos are dedicated to them, which have never resigned themselves to silence from early on in their heyday, and the inevitable silence that now accompanies them.

NOTE: Many cultural projects, such as art galleries, theater and dance companies and other art forms, have been occupying the spaces of these old movie theaters’ in a slow process that isn’t exempt from bureaucratic hurdles. I would like to thank the representatives from the ARTECONTINUA project, with its base in an old movie theater in Havana’s Chinatown, for the courtesy and kindness I received from them along my tour of these movie theaters for this Havana Times report.



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4 thoughts on “Havana’s Neighborhood Movie Theaters

  • Socialism at its worst!

  • I have always been fascinated w/ these places since I first traveled to Cuba, and regret that they are decaying. However, if they were in the west they would have long-ago been bulldozed for Burger KIngs. You cannot expect a poor country to restore old theaters when housing is a struggle. BTW, does anyone know the history of the old movie theater next to Hotel Lido on Consulado ?

  • I agree. The art deco architecture was once so majestic and beautiful in some of these places that even just a periodic cleaning and a coat of paint would have gone a long way toward preserving the original elegance.

  • The interiors of some of these theatres would just break your heart, the deterioration is beyond ever being fixable. It’s a travesty.

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