The King’s Speech

This isn’t really a movie review post, but I will say that The King’s Speech lived up to reviews. It was excellent, and despite my fear that I would find it boring or unengaging, there was something about the execution that kept that from happening.

Later, with friends, I joked that in a movie that took place against the backdrop of Hitler’s rise to power and the decision in England about whether to go to war, they could have at least put in one explosion, just to keep the Americans entertained.

The acting was phenomenal, and the film’s score was definitely integral and really well-executed. I highly recommend the movie to anyone. Oh, and perhaps the best part, for me, was the judicious use of Shakespeare – we got some Hamlet, some Richard III, and some The Tempest, and I’m probably missing some in that list. Good stuff.

But no, the point of this post is actually to review Kolga Movies. Kolga operates in a big building across the street from the Rustaveli McDonald’s. Yeah, that means it’s a minute’s walk from the Rustaveli Metro. Very convenient location.

When you walk in, there’s a small entry hall with a desk and a pair of bathrooms. You can buy tickets on the day of the show – although I’m not sure exactly what time the ticket office opens, since the roommate and I were treated by some Georgian friends. The theatre itself is a reasonably sized room, with a projector mounted on a wooden board resting atop some of the seats. The screen is a decent size – it’s no IMAX experience, but it’s respectable and much bigger than a TV, of course. The sound is decent – the volume was good, and there was no distortion of the excellent film score (or the diagetic music in the Hamlet scene, for example). No one was smoking in the theatre, and my allergies were not activated by any dust or upholstery fails (always a potential issue for me in older theatres).

The rake wasn’t really sufficient, so I did have to sort of sit up to see over the person in front of me, but this was a pretty minor issue overall. If you’re a short person, try to sit near the front or behind other short people. Also, there were some technical issues with the movie – basically, it skipped ahead several times (I think at regular intervals, although I could be wrong, but it was very noticeable, and we lost at least several seconds per skip.) I’ve been assured that this was specific to this film and would not be a regular issue, but we’ll see – I’m thinking about going to see The Social Network on Wednesday, so perhaps I’ll post a follow-up. The other potential issue is that the seats aren’t really cushioned – this wasn’t a huge issue for me, and I ended up being quite comfortable, but it’s worth mentioning.

And then there was the crowd. A lot of TLG, but no problems that I could see. It was a good group, actually. One of my Georgian friends commented to me that it seemed like I basically knew everyone there – not exactly, but I did know the people who sat directly in front of us, and maybe another fifteen or twenty people who showed up. So Kolga – especially on Friday nights – is definitely going to be a good place to go to meet up with other English-speakers. I even saw some people from Western Georgia who I have basically fallen out of touch with since orientation, so, that was cool.

Overall, I rate the experience quite highly. Kolga has a very respectable theatre setup – good audio, good video, good atmosphere, and a good crowd, with only a few minor hiccups that could be worked out. They also take requests, provided you can get a group of at least ten people to commit to showing up. Kolga’s good enough that I’ll probably go there pretty regularly even though I can easily download movies for free and watch them at home.

Final thought: I wonder if they’d let us do Rocky…

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