Do You Know? Ancient Cinemas in Indonesia

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Apart from being shown in buildings, it turns out that wide-screen films have also been shown in open fields. Well, here are some cinemas that have been in Indonesia.

The Flying Bioscope

Films began to appear in Indonesia around 1896. At that time, films were known as gambar idoep (live or moving images). At first, the films were shown in theaters, and only Europeans could enjoy the shows. Then, people started to set up gambar idoep companies and made semi-permanent buildings as a place for film screenings or called cinema buildings.

These semi-permanent buildings are known as the flying bioscope. The shape of the building is like a tented ward, the walls are made of wood or bamboo, and the roof is made of tin. After several days of screenings, the cinema building was demolished and moved to another city.

Permanent Cinema

In 1905 at a house in Kebon Jahe, Tanah Abang, Jakarta, there was a silent film screening. The show was hosted by De Nederlandsch Bioscope Maatschappij. The show is considered the forerunner to the emergence of a permanent cinema.

Five years after that, more and more cinemas have sprung up. The buildings were built with a modern impression. Other big cities, such as Surabaya and Bandung, also have their own cinema buildings that can accommodate hundreds of people. Unfortunately, until then, the films being screened were still European films. Indonesian films only existed around 1926.

Metropole, Rivoli and Alhambra

In 1951, the Metropole Cinema in Jakarta was opened. This cinema is quite big and luxurious. The building has 1,700 seats and is equipped with a vacuum and an air blower. The building consists of three floors and is equipped with a dance hall and swimming pool. Oh yes, until now the Metropole cinema building is still there. It is located on Pegangsaan Barat Street, Central Jakarta.

At that time, there were also cinemas that only screened films from certain countries. On Kramat Raya Street, Central Jakarta, there is a cinema called Rivoli which has 800 seats. This cinema only shows Indian films. Then, in the Sawah Besar area, Central Jakarta, there is an Alhambra cinema that only shows films from Egypt.

Baca juga: Do You Know? Filmmaking Development

Plug Screen

In the 1950s there were more than 200 cinemas in Indonesia. Unfortunately, these cinemas are only available in big cities. Because of that, the step-by-step screen appeared. Plug screen is a film screening that is done in an open field at night.

In this cinema, the screen is mounted with bamboo or iron poles. Screen sizes vary, usually 3 x 7 meters or 4 x 9 meters. Oh yes, usually in one show there are several titles of films being screened. The films can come from within or outside the country.

Drive-in Cinema

Like the plug-in screen, the drive-in cinema is also held in a very large open field. The difference is, that the audience is in their respective cars. Every car that comes is parked enough to face the giant screen.

The vehicle cinema was opened in Ancol, North Jakarta, in 1970. The Ancol drive-in cinema can accommodate 850 cars. At that time, this vehicle cinema became the largest in Southeast Asia. The screen is 40 meters long, 19 meters wide, and 27 meters high. Wow!

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