Observations: The cinematic secret that's proving too good to keep

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The Independent Culture

Secret Cinema shouldn't really be a secret, despite the society's website warning attendees to "tell no one". It's the best night out at the movies in Britain, especially now that going to the local multiplex has become a celebration of bland and brand, the same overpriced confectionery and an overdose of adverts and trailers.

Secret Cinema is a gathering of film fans that aims to make movie-watching an "experience". Every month or so, a film is shown at a secret location in one of six cities, often chosen to fit with the mystery movie being shown. These can range from special previews, such as the advance screenings of Gus Van Sant's Paranoid Park, which took place in a disused railway tunnel in south London, or classic films such as the dual screening of Ghostbusters at the Royal Horticultural Halls in Westminster and the Corn Exchange in Brighton last month.

The venues are decorated to fit in with the film. There was a skateboard ramp at the Paranoid Park screening, and for Ghostbusters, venues were dressed in the style of Eighties New York, with actors dressed as characters from the movie spouting famous lines, and the Ecto-1 driving around town with light flashing and smoke pouring out.

The venue is secret until two days before the screening, when an email is sent telling those registered with the site where to congregate. The next gathering is set to take place at the end of this month. Shhh...