Cuncolim’s dash with nostalgia via the revival of a Cinema hall
A cinema hall - Paradise Talkies Theatre, which was started soon after liberation in 1962 is back in Cuncolim in its new avatar and it’s creating a buzz amongst locals from Cuncolim and surrounding areas
Cuncolkars’ long wait for an entertainment centre has come to an end with the Zantye Group of Companies opening their Zee Square Paradise Talkies Cinema Hall. The people of Cuncolim and surrounding areas had been waiting for Paradise Talkies to open since the last one year. On June 30, 2018, the Cuncolim Zee Square Paradise Talkies Cinema was inaugurated at the hands of South Goa MP Narendra Sawaikar along with Cuncolim MLA Clafacio Dias, owner of the cinema hall and Bicholim MLA Pravin Zantye, Chairperson Lavita Mascarenhas and other dignitaries. Hindi film ‘Sanju’ was screened on the first day.
Zee Square Paradise Talkies is not a new cinema hall nor are Cuncolkars new to cinema entertainment. In fact, the Paradise Talkies Cinema theatre was started in Cuncolim soon after Liberation, in 1962. The cinema hall had created many records in its time. Tickets at that time were priced between 30 paise and 60 paise. It was the only entertainment centre in Cuncolim and a draw for cinema lovers not only from the village but also from nearby villages like Velim, Assolna, Betul, Chinchinim, Fatorpa, Balli, Morpila and more distant areas such as Quepem and Canacona. Films like ‘Sholey’, ‘Deewar’, ‘Andha Kanoon’, ‘Disco Dancer’, ‘Rocky’ and ‘Tarzan’ attracted hundreds of cinema lovers. People used to be lined up to buy the tickets and some films remained for over one month with all shows running houseful. Cuncolkars and cinema lovers even experienced the black ticket tamasha in this cinema hall. Paradise was like a meeting point for the youth as youngsters use to frequent the place, making a day out of the outing. From 1962 till 2002, that’s almost forty years, Paradise Talkies was, in a true sense, the paradise of entertainment for this area. But after that period, the field of entertainment experienced the bad recession. It was the time of the advent of television entertainment. Cinema lovers stop going to the theatre because they could access entertainment on their TV sets and many cinema halls were forced to shut down; Paradise Talkies was one such cinema hall. Zantye Group closed down the theatre and it was turned into a party hall. Cuncolkars and cinema lovers were not too happy with this decision and the demand for a theatre was a long standing one. Now finally, many of these single-plex cinemas are being reopened with a new face lift. Pravin Zantye, the owner of Paradise Talkies, has renovated the film theatre under the banner of Zee Square Paradise Talkies. The theatre has been upgraded with all modern facilities. It has two screens – the mini hall has the capacity of 80 seats, while the bigger hall can hold 125 viewers. Both theatres are equipped with Dolby sound system and the place is fully air-conditioned. There will be five shows every day, on both screens. Both screens will show different films. There are two categories in each hall – Lower seats will coast Rs 120 while upper seats are priced at Rs 130. The big hall also has a Family Box. Other amenities such as sanitation, canteen and parking have also been taken care off, and the movie-goers will play an important part in the smooth maintenance of the same. In addition to cinema, the hall owner has also started a fresh vegetable and fruit centre called Tokri. So you can catch some entertainment and do your grocery shopping at the same time. This endeavour will hopefully be well received by the public as it offers them a great solution to catch the latest films without making the commute to Margao or Panjim.
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