The curtain falls

Dubai's recently closed Golden Cinema. Navin Khianey / The National
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The demise yesterday of the Golden Cinema in Bur Dubai is worthy of lament. For a start, it has been in business since 1972, making it nearly as old as the UAE itself. Its single large theatre is also capable of seating 1,500 cinephiles, in contrast to the way most modern multiplexes feature many screens showing movies to only a few hundred people in each.

But what many will lament most is that it was the last independent Indian cinema in Dubai. In a world dominated by mainstream cinema of either the Bollywood or Hollywood variety, this class of theatre offered an alternative to the latest blockbusters.

Based on the runaway successes of the film festivals in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, there is clearly an audience that seeks independent arthouse movies on the big screen. While most people are happy to watch the big big-budget releases, there ought to be room for a cinema offering something a little different.