Cinema Ruskin looks to startle in its latest movie season

Dr Crippen, Mr Scrooge, Jekyll and Hyde: the Cinema Ruskin film club is back with more black and white movie classics

A strange bedside manner: Donald Pleasence as Dr Crippen

A strange bedside manner: Donald Pleasence starring as Dr Crippen

Bella Bartock, our tireless arts correspondent, now in her ninth decade but still dipping her nib in vitriol, was visiting Inside Croydon Towers the other day. Amid all her usual grumbles, about her heart burn, her haemorrhoids and bunions, she registered a different complaint.

“Surely, I can’t be the only one who regrets the absence from our television screens… ” she said, in that slightly quaint, high-born Austro-Hungarian accent of hers, “… of the Sunday afternoon matinee? Especially on these dark, dank English winter afternoons of yours…

“Instead of being able to enjoy glorious old Ealing comedies and John Wayne Westerns, all we seem to have served up now after our Sunday lunch are dreadful repeats of that spiv, Simon Cowell, or yet more self-congratulatory natural history programmes, in which the BBC cameraman tells us how clever he’s been to film the sex life of the bonobos. It does nothing for my reflux.”

And with that, Bella flounced out the Poor Door, which we have had specially constructed in our luxuriously appointed iconic office block just in case #WadGate Fisher or Tony Soprano visit.

But we suspect that Bella will be at the front of the queue at Cinema Ruskin on Saturday evening, and not just to get to the Ruskin House subsidised bar when doors open at 7pm.

The epitome of Tory "values": Alastair Sim as Scrooge

The epitome of Tory “values”: Alastair Sim as Scrooge in A Christmas Carol

Because in Cinema Ruskin’s latest season of movies, compiled by Mike Carter, there’s a whole raft (not, though, George Raft) of old classics, starting this Saturday with Dr Crippen, starring a particularly creepy Donald Pleasence. There was once a rumour that Bella Bartock was actually the fiendish doctor’s young lover, but no one has ever dared ask.

The monthly movie programme is particularly Christmassy on Saturday, December 20, with another screening – by special request – of Alastair Sim as Scrooge in A Christmas Carol.

And on January 17, movie buffs will be taken back more than 80 years, for a showing of Frederic March in the 1931 version of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hide.

Admission for all the screenings is a mere £2, which will again get Bella all nostalgic.

Ruskin House is at 23 Coombe Road, Croydon, CR0 1BD. Contact Mike Carter for further information – 01959 576271

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News, views and analysis about the people of Croydon, their lives and political times in the diverse and most-populated borough in London. Based in Croydon and edited by Steven Downes. To contact us, please email
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1 Response to Cinema Ruskin looks to startle in its latest movie season

  1. davidjl2014 says:

    Dr Crippen, Mr Scrooge, Jekyll & Hyde. All past and present Croydon Councillors surely!

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