The first time I popped up from Notting Hill Gate station, I was disappointed. I had expected to see the market, and the house with the blue door. And maybe even run into Hugh Grant, spilling his orange juice on my Love Actually t-shirt. But then, you might say I am a dreamer.
The first time I couldn’t even find Portobello Road. But on the other hand, I wasn’t really there for the market, I was there for the cinema. And just to kill the suspense right away, until now (and I have seen quite a few London cinemas already) the Notting Hill Coronet Cinema is number one on my list of most beautiful cinemas in London. I like the Prince Charles too, but the Coronet wins on interior, style and charisma (click for a better picture).
It is actually an old theatre, and still looks like as if a Shakespeare play will be performed shortly after you got to your seat. It is simply beautiful, with Stalls and Balcony places. And another good thing : tickets are way cheaper than the overpriced cinema’s on Leicester Square.
The screen is not mega but large enough, and sound is ok. There is one but, you better not sit on a chair in the stalls section, as the chairs are from the time where the word ergonomy hadn’t been invented yet. I tried, but moved after 5 minutes. Pick a seat on the balcony in stead , feel like a royal and watch the film from there.
What I saw ? I saw Mission Impossible III, with the Cruizer. I hadn’t expected that much of it, I just wanted to be entertained. And the film succeeded well in that aspect. One complaint might be that Ethan (Cruise) was on the edge of crying a bit too often, but on the other hand, Philip Seymour Hoffman as the lean, and very mean villain compensated completely for that. He is so cool.
A 7.5 for this film. Also for having 2 Brits in it (Simon Pegg, and Jonathan Rhys Meyers).
I did find Portobello Road the second time I was in Notting Hill. And even though I was there after the market had closed, it appeared to be a very cosy area. It will probably be very busy in the weekends, but that’s London.
I both recommend to watch a film in the Notting Hill Coronet, and also to visit Portobello Road. If only to be able to say that you have been there. I will return there some day, and take some more pictures.