THE Hackney Picturehouse opens on Friday 28 October in a handsome building opposite the town hall and near a plethora of bus and railway stops, potentially delivering plenty of customers.
Inside are four theatres with big screens, although none is 70mm wide, a café-bar providing chef-directed meals and locally supplied beer.
The conversion from the failed Ocean music venue, into which Hackney council sunk millions of pounds, never to be hooked back [cut the line; this metaphor is drowning], cost City Screen, owners of the Picturehouse cinema chain, £3.5 million.
The decor, by the West End architect Fletcher Priest and BW Interiors, of Borough, is funky enough with its fashionable lighting, brightly upholstered sofas, slightly worn-looking armchairs and Eames-style café chairs to appeal to Rio fans. But it is not so overpowering as to deter the kind of audiences attracted by the Stratford Picturehouse.