The Shaft Is Gone

Posted: October 2, 2009 in Cinema, Melbourne

Today as I was walking down Swanston Street I saw that the Shaft Adult Cinema has closed. Perverts across Melbourne will be devastated to hear this news but I always wondered how Shaft could stay open with the availability of pornography on the net. Anyway, the reason that I am posting this is not to talk about porn, but to talk about what the Melbourne City Council should do with this cinema. Now I do know what the Melbourne City Council will do, they will get developers in to redevelop the site so that they can charge the next tenant as high a rent as possible, but I think that they could redevelop the site but retain it as a cinema, albeit one that does not show blue movies. I still think that a revival cinema showing old films would be a hit. Unfortunately the ACMI cinemas seem intent on showing only old films that are in foreign languages or are art house films, while the Astor shows a very small sample of classics mixed in with lame arsed newer films. I could see a cinema that could show classic films that could attract the baby boomers and cinema goers after lunch in the city. It could be a place where film students can catch Hollywood classics, or where children can see timeless masterpieces that weren’t designed with the sole purpose of selling toys. I don’t think that I’ve really articulated this well, as perhaps I am someone who thinks up ideas but finds it hard to explain it properly. Here’s a sample example of what a program could be…

  This is what I think could be a popular School Holiday Program with different movies to suit all sorts of kids.

  Mon Tues Wednes Thurs Fri Sat Sun
1pm Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs Pinocchio Fantasia Dumbo Bambi Mickey & The Gang (A Collection of Disney Shorts) Cinderella
4pm The Adventures Of Robin Hood The Nutty Professor (Jerry Lewis) Jason And The Argonauts Superman The Movie ET Best Of Bugs Bunny (A Collection Of

Looney Tunes & Merry Melodies)

The Princess Bride
7pm The Wizard Of Oz Singin’ In The Rain The Sound Of Music The King And I Mary Poppins Grease Willy Wonka And The Chocolate Factory
  11pm Psycho The Third Man  

 * The 11pm session does not have to show kid friendly films.

 There could also be various film festivals celebrating a different director, studio, actor or genre that I think could be popular.

 Alfred Hitchcock Film Festival

  Mon Tues Wednes Thurs Fri Sat Sun
1pm Rear Window Blackmail The Wrong Man Rope Rebecca Foreign Correspondent The Birds
4pm Vertigo The 39 Steps North By North West I Confess Notorious Lifeboat To Catch A Thief
7pm The Trouble With Harry The Man Who Knew Too Much (1930s version) The Man Who Knew Too Much (1950s version) Stage Fright Spellbound Strangers On A Train Dial M For Murder
  11pm Psycho Shadow Of A Doubt  

 Walt Disney Film Festival

(This would be good for school holidays)

  Mon Tues Wednes Thurs Fri Sat Sun
1pm Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs Dumbo Bambi Pinocchio Cinderella Mickey & The Gang (A Collection of Disney Shorts) Best Of The Silly Symphonies (A Collection of Disney Shorts)
4pm Davey Crockett (Part 1) Davey Crockett (Part 2) The Best Of Zorro The Best Of The Mickey Mouse Club Sleeping Beauty Alice In Wonderland Peter Pan
7pm The Jungle Book Mary Poppins The Living Desert Vanishing Prairie Mysteries of the Deep Treasure Island 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea
  11pm Song Of The South Fantasia  


  • Song Of The South – but only if Disney and Buena Vista allows it. (Of course there are very few African Americans living in Australia who could find it offensive!) There would be an introduction prior to the screening explaining the controversy surrounding the film. As the film in a modern context is not really suitable for children, this is why it would be shown in such a late time slot!

 The Monster Movie Festival (This would be good for October in the run up to Halloween)

  Mon Tues Wednes Thurs Fri Sat Sun
1pm Frankenstein Dracula The Invisible Man Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein


The Creature From The Black Lagoon King Kong The Creature From The Black Lagoon
4pm Bride Of Frankenstein The Mummy


The Invisible Man Returns


The Raven


Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man House of Frankenstein


Werewolf Of London
7pm Son Of Frankenstein The Mummy’s Tomb


Murders in the Rue Morgue


House Of Wax The Phantom Of The Opera (Lon Chaney Version) House of Dracula


The Wolf Man
  11pm The Hunchback Of Notre Dame Freaks  


  • This was originally to be a Universal Monsters only festival, but there are perhaps too many classic monsters that are also deserving of a spot!

  I reckon this would be a fun thing to do, but also a lot of hard work. Unfortunately the only cinemas in Melbourne that show classic films are the ACMI and Astor cinemas and they don’t really have that great a variety of films and tend to look mostly to the more arty ones, rather than popular.

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