After gig haunts and late-night bars, the COVID-19 pandemic has taken away another one of our homes: Cinema Centenario.
In an emotional letter posted on Facebook, the iconic microcinema in Maginhawa, Quezon City told a heartwarming narrative about Cinema Centenario’s origins, starting from their very first visitors. “May ganito palang pelikula? Ang ganda-ganda. Babalik kami, malapit lang naman kami. Salamat dito sa ginawa niyo, marami pala tayong magagandang pelikula,” the guests said, according to their story.
Moments like this, said the team, validated the purpose of their existence—to be a home for local films for the development of the local audience. Sadly, they have to close their doors.
“After more than 200 days ng aming pagsasara buhat ng pandemic, nais naming magpaalam dahil tuluyan na naming isasara ang pinto ng ating tahanan sa Maginhawa,” they wrote. The next step is unsure as of the moment since sustainability and safety have become main concerns.
Not only was Cinema Centenario a place to find local indie gems, but thanks to their initiatives like the Never Forget Film Festival, the cinema also screened important films that delve into socio-political issues.
Places like Cinema Centenario have kept us optimistic about the future we’ve been waiting for when all this is over, so knowing that it won’t be around anymore breaks our hearts. Though it’s gone too soon, the least we can do is to keep Philippine cinema alive, just like what they did.
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Photo from NoliSoli