Went to the lovely new Curzon Millbank today. It's a pleasant 30 mins walk from home and has a nice shiny, new, black-tiled lobby, flash toilets and a screen that is obviously designed for the day job of business presentations (the cinema only has screenings during the evening on weekdays, during the day it's private hire only).
The seats are lovely, black leather and high-backed which you don't get at the Curzon Soho, where I go most often, but they feel slightly shallow and a little too upright to make for a completely comfortable viewing experience.
Screen 1 at the Clapham Picturehouse still has the best seats because they are deep, don't have flip up seats and actually recline a little, followed closely by the Apollo Piccadilly which also has lovely deep, non-pop up seats. What can I say? I'm a film nerd, I go to the cinema a lot and these things matter.
The staff at Millbank are shiny and new too which resulted in my being overcharged for my ticket. My Cineaste membership discount wasn't given. It was all sorted albeit leaving me feeling like I'd been wrong to point out the error (customer service, come on). But in the course of sorting out the refund I noticed that there is actually a pricing mistake in the Curzon's most recently printed programme.
The film I saw, Fair Game, started at 1pm. Peak ticket prices come into force after 2pm but Early Bird ticket prices are valid before noon leaving a two hour window with no discernible ticket pricing. I was charged a peak ticket rate which I was a little miffed at, as the film started an hour before the peak rate apparently kicks in. The staff's answer? 'Well we only have two prices and it isn't an early bird showing.' But neither is it peak, if I'm going to be picky. 'A printing error' I was curtly informed.
In the whole process there was a cursory 'sorry' but I was left feeling like a nuisance and it did taint my visit somewhat. Come on Curzon, complete the shiny new cinema with happy, shiny, friendly staff.