Tuesday, June 21, 2016

A visit to the cinema

Finding these two photos of the old alhambra cinema brought back early memories.  My parents took me to see  Fall of the house of Usher (see poster) with Vincent Price of course. Scared out of my shell, my love for the horror genre was born.

The Alhambra and Malboro theatres were two cinema halls in Beach road. After changing ownership several times finally The Cathay organisation took over post WW2.


The evening I was taken to the Alhambra was in 1960, a bridge partner (of my parents) failed to turn up so a visit to the cinema was suggested. The Cinema was already old and badly in need for refurbishment. I recall the sound of peanuts being cracked open, and the sound of presumably rats, too dark to see, scurrying on the floor amongst the rubbish left overs from  earlier screenings.
    I believe that 9 years old me was holding on to my mother the entire film, with its visit to coffin laden ancient crypts and sadistic cackling around every corner.
 The final denouement of a swishing pendulum blade swinging ever lower to the naked belly of a whimpering heroine.
   My mother said she would never return, the cinema was in a disgraceful condition.
   I have recollections of visiting The Cathay, The Pavillion and Capitol cinema end 50s and early 60s. Perhaps another day there will be room to discuss the visits to local cinemas. That might well be an entertaining project.


  1. I think if I am not wrong, the original satay stalls were by the Alhambra Cinema?

  2. The original (?) satay club was in a side lane off Beach road, where the buses performed smoky turn arounds. I have vivid memories of happy family moments spent there. We kids were competing over the sticks consumed and with "mamak" mee as well. When the stalls moved to esplanade was totally different.