The Golden Age of the Cinemas in Guyana – By Dr. Dhanpaul Narine

  – By Dr. Dhanpaul Narine

Astor Cinema

The music from ‘Jaws’ began faintly. As it reached a crescendo, the great white shark leaped and landed with a big splash. It’s razor-sharp teeth ripped an arm, then a leg that colored the ocean red. A prim and proper lady in balcony screamed, jumped, and landed in the lap of a stranger! It was thrills galore at Astor cinema, in Georgetown.

The cinemas in Guyana are no more. But there was a time, not so long ago, when they were fun, exciting, offered escapism, and became the hub of the community. Many of the buildings were elegant, with pleasing lines of architecture and comfortable seating. The cinemas brought Guyanese of all shades together and the movies left a lasting impression.

READ MORE: Cinamas in Guyana

DEMOLITION OF ASTOR CINEMA – Interview with Dave Martins



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  • Clyde Duncan  On August 14, 2019 at 2:48 am

    Thanks for the walk down Memory Lane, Doc!

    I am a Georgetown Boy; therefore, that is all I know about anything around the cinemas.

    I remember the Empire on Middle Street for the Indian Show with a very young Mathematician – perhaps, 8-Years old? – you could throw any mathematical question at him and he would give the answer. And, I vaguely remembered a Japanese show with a young woman who could not speak a word of English, but sang in English – most of all I remember Jackie Wilson and Sil Austin; and Chubby Checker.

    I am not sure if Chubby Checker was at the Empire or Astor?

    But I did see Chuck Jackson at the Astor.

    To Sir with Love I saw in Toronto, I wanted to be back in Georgetown with my friends ….

    • wally n  On August 14, 2019 at 6:13 pm

      Almost certain Chubby Checker appeared at Metropole, almost. I remember him asking the audience members come up and dance. One guy I actually knew his name, {he was a marathon runner, always came in last, people would come an hour after the race to see him finish} jumped on the stage to a huge applause, then went into action, to even larger applause, Chubby Checker chased him off, with, you trying to put me out of business. That is why I remember….good times good times.

  • mudhead2  On August 14, 2019 at 4:14 am

    Yes as a boy I can remember going to the pictures on a Saturday morning. Sad that they are no more

  • dhanpaul narine  On August 14, 2019 at 1:13 pm

    According to Dave Martins people used to dress up for the cinemas as if they were going to a wedding house. They used to put on their Sunday best! Those were the days; now you could lie on your bed with your smartphone and watch a movie.

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