7 Reasons Why Going To A Trinidad Movie Theater is a Cultural Experience

Sitting in a big room staring at a glowing screen hardly seems like a way to get in touch with the local culture, especially when you’re going to see an American blockbuster film like Transformers.  But Tuesday nights at Globe Theater on St Vincent Street in downtown Port of Spain offers a lot more than the latest flicks. Trinidad’s tourism authority really should put it on the suggested itineraries, because it’s a movie experience unlike any other.

popcorn photo

Globe is about a lot more than movies and popcorn - by Blue Square Thing on Flickr

#1: It’s Crazy Cheap

On Tuesday night, tickets at Globe are just 10 TT for house seating and 15 TT for balcony seating – that’s like $1.60 – $2.50 USD! The movies are new releases too, and not the kind that have been inconspicuously videotaped from another theater either. Where else in the world can you find movie tickets for that price?

#2: Get Local Opinion About New Movies

Ever wondered if you should go see a new movie? If it looks cool enough to put it on your mental to-see list or you should wait for the DVD? Have no fear, because Globe’s Tuesday night crowd will help you decide. The new Twilight trailer comes on, and all the men boo at the top of their lungs while the girls let out high-pitched squeals and make loud kissy noises at the screen. Harry Potter? That got a mixed reaction to the crowd, with the older gentleman behind me shouting out, “Don’t knock it!” in a slightly defensive way. Captain America, perhaps? The mostly male crowd seemed to be feeling this flick, and let out a few whoops and cheers showing their approval.

#3: Unleash Your Emotions

Have you ever gotten so into a movie that you felt like cheering when the good guy defeats the bad one, or whistling when the leading couple has their first kiss? You’ll feel right at home at Globe. Clapping and hollering at a volume normally reserved for sporting events, yelling at the screen chastising the characters, or any other explosions of emotion won’t be met with the hushing prevalent in other movie theaters. In fact, you may look around to find the majority of the other patrons sharing your sentiments. Don’t be shy – just let it out.

#4: Express Yourself When There Are No Words

Maybe most interesting about my Globe experience was the sound my fellow movie watchers made when there were no words fitting for the moment. These were met not with silence, but with a sound like “ooOooOoo”. While similar to the noise that little kids make when they see someone kissing, this tone is more monotonous, like a forceful, noisy breath that’s expelled as a means of tension release.

#5: Avoid Standing In Line

Not in the mood to stand in line? No worries! Your other option is to push through the even bigger crowd hovering around the ticket window, flashing puppy dog eyes at those who did suffer through the wait and asking to buy their tickets as well. If you are feeling nice and decide to buy the 20 tickets that the line skippers will invariably ask for, feel free to solicit a tip – it might work.

#6: Get Second-Hand Smoke

I was more than a little shocked when the two beer-guzzling teens in front of us decided to light up (cigarettes – don’t get too excited). The guy sitting next to them motioned towards the glowing sticks and I thought he was politely asking them to put them out. But alas, he instead wanted to borrow their lighter so he could enjoy his own mid-movie tobacco fix.

#7: Skip Waiting For the Review

Have you ever watched a movie and not been sure how to process it? Was it great, horrible, or somewhere in between? Instead of reading some professional movie critique in Sunday’s paper, the crowd’s reaction afterwards may help you sort it out. The guy behind me offered his personal review proclaiming, “What a great f*cking movie!” and another, “That was rell good boy!”

So you can eat local street food, check out the museums, and play Carnival, but the real cultural insight is served for just $10 TT at Globe Theater on Tuesday nights.

9 Comments
  • TheFather
    July 10, 2011

    NOW you understand your Mother watching movies, sporting events..just about anything!

  • Nomadic Samuel
    July 10, 2011

    I enjoyed this article.  Going to a movie theater in another country is certainly an experience different from back home – more than just a movie.  For example, in Thailand everyone stands & pauses for a tribute to the King before the movies get rolling & in Korea I was once treated to a movie at a luxury theater where we had our own sofa & a basket of dried squid to share – no popcorn in sight! :P

  • Anonymous
    July 10, 2011

    This makes me want to go to Trinidad more then anything else! lol  Is that bad or good???  Love that their smoking it up, yelling at the screen and costs only a few bucks to go.  It’s like the Philippines minus the smoking! :)

  • Megan
    July 10, 2011

    Ha, sounds very similar to the cinema experience in India! Apart from the smoking – you go through several pat down searches in India to ensure you don’t have cigarettes or a lighter on you. 

  • Jasmine Stephenson
    July 10, 2011

    I’ll have to check out a movie in Korea – hopefully they have a vegetarian snack :)

  • Jasmine Stephenson
    July 10, 2011

    Troy, if this sounds good to you, you will LOVE Trinidad!

  • Jasmine Stephenson
    July 10, 2011

    Wow that’s intense – maybe they’re afraid of something catching on fire?

  • Guest
    May 31, 2012

    Wow, ok. I’m from Trinidad but I would never go there to watch a movie. What made you choose that location?

  • Jasmine Stephenson
    June 5, 2012

    Hahaha it was my uncle’s idea…

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