Up until 1990, there were approximately 450 cinemas in Romania in the publicly-owned network. After the revolution many of them were closed for lack of funding, their locations were turned into supermarkets or gaming venues, and they started to loose viewers to the recently developed multiplexes inside of malls. Some estimates say less than 30 such cinemas can be found throughout Romania today. Consequently, the distribution of local or independent films remains limited as mall cinemas distribute mostly international releases. Last year the organizers of the Transylvania International Film Festival started the Save the Silver Screen campaign, trying to prevent the further closure of older cinema in neighborhoods and raise funding for their modernization. You can still support the initiative by choosing to see films at any of these non-mall venues, where in most cases tickets are priced about half of what they do at a mall cinema.
Cinema Europa is one of the longest-standing cinema halls in Bucharest, having been built 1935. Standing at 127 Calea Mosilor, the 274 seats cinema is now part of the Europa cinemas network, which distributes European films. The building was refurbished and the viewing conditions have improved with a dolby stereo sound system, upgraded heating system and air conditioning. A Facebook page was recently created to support this place.
Cinema Corso, located close to the Cismigiu park, was also refurbished in 2009. With a 273 seats capacity, it draws an audience looking for a more intimate and welcoming atmosphere. It usually runs local and European films.
The Patria Cinema on Magheru boulevard adds to the list of the traditional cinemas still standing in the capital city. It accommodates 1,014 seats and offers special tickets for the elderly, children under 14 and people with disabilities. It also features a 3D Caffe Cinema and a 50 seats VIP room.
Known as the venue hosting most of the film festivals in Bucharest, Cinema Studio is located in one of Bucharest’s art-deco buildings. It is equipped with a digital projector, a new screen and its surround sound system was also refurbished.
(photo source: Cinema Europa)