Hermon native Joshua Moulton long dreamed about how he could turn his love of film — cult, classic, horror, indie, you name it — into a full-time job, while staying in the Bangor area.
Opening a little arthouse cinema was too much of a financial gamble for him. But Moulton eventually arrived upon a novel idea, one that combined his cinephilia with the burgeoning popularity of arcade bars and board game cafes.
Queen City Cinema Club, which opens Friday, caters to film fans, video game addicts, board game aficionados and all-around pop culture lovers. Located in the lower level of 128 Main St., across the street from the Bangor Opera House, it’s a new addition to downtown that isn’t retail, or a restaurant or bar: It’s purely for entertainment.
“We have great restaurants downtown. We have great bars. But as for entertainment, it’s all event-based. There’s no place you can go to every night and always have something to do,” said Moulton, who until recently was a bartender at Blaze Restaurant in Bangor. “We’re aiming to fix that.”
Moulton and his manager and childhood friend, Steven “Boss” Bosse have spent the past six months transforming the former gym into a multi-purpose entertainment venue. There are two soundproofed cinemas, the larger of which can seat eight and can expand up to 20, the smaller of which can seat four and can expand up to 10. Both have high-definition projectors, surround sound and super-comfy reclining chairs.
Customers can rent a cinema for $20 for the smaller cinema or $40 for the larger, per two-hour block. The renter chooses a film or TV show to watch — Moulton currently has more than 1,200 DVDs in his own collection, with more arriving every day. Alternately, the renter can bring their own DVD or digital copy.
“We’re just providing the venue. The customer provides the movie. It’s a private screening but with all the trappings of a movie theater,” Moulton said.
Emily Burnham is a Maine native and proud Bangorian, covering business, the arts, restaurants and the culture and history of the Bangor region.
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