There are plenty of movie theaters in Panama City. Mostly these are multiplexes showing recent Hollywood spectacles and are generally in English with Spanish subtitles rather than dubbed. Most ticket prices for adults are US$4 or less. Tickets are generally about half price on Tuesday or Wednesday.
Popular, centrally located multiplexes include Alhambra Vía España (Vía España, tel. 264-6585), Extreme Planet (Vía España, tel. 214-7022), and Cinemark Albrook (Albrook Mall, tel. 314-6001). A new Cinemark multiplex in the Multicentro mall should be open by the end of 2010; see www.cinemarkca.com for updates.
The fancy Mexican-owned cinema chain Cinépolis (Multiplaza Pacific Mall, tel. 302-2463) has arrived in Panama, with its first beachhead in the upscale Multiplaza Pacific Mall. It offers two kinds of movie experiences: the usual multiplex theater at usual multiplex prices, or Cinépolis VIP, which allows patrons to choose their (overstuffed, reclining) seat in advance. Moviegoers can order food and drink to be delivered to their seats. It’s pretty posh. Tickets for this cost US$10.50, which strikes the average Panamanian as extortionate, but is of course an unexpected bargain for many first-world visitors.
The Diablo Rosso café/art gallery (#11, Avenida A and Calle 7, tel. 228-4833 or 228-4837, www.diablorosso.com) in Casco Viejo hosts an indie film night on Tuesdays, a welcome addition to the movie scene for culture-starved residents who don’t relish seeing the umpteenth retread of The Fast and the Furious.
© William Friar from Moon Panama, 3rd Edition