Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Les possibilités illimitées

I wrote last month of my chagrin regarding MK2's withdrawal from the fantastic Carte Le Pass scheme operated in collaboration with Gaumont and Pathé. I was worried about having to choose between MK2's new subscription offer and Le Pass, which continues to offer access to a number of independent cinemas in Paris, including two close to my home.

Now that MK2 have announced their new package, to be operational from September, I have no hesitation in choosing my camp. It will be with them, who have returned Pathé's shafting of them in taking their tenancy at Beaugrenelle by hopping into bed with the big boys of European multiplexes UGC, which will surely make Pathé regret their Machiavellian move, which probably seemed a good idea at the time. The new Carte Illimitée is valid at fifty cinemas in Paris, including all the UGC cinemas, all the MK2 outlets and all the independent cinemas, and more, that were covered by the Carte Le Pass. It also works for UGCs around France and in Belgium, Italy and Spain, should one happen to be travelling. All for €19.80 per month. There is, of course a downside to such an agglomoration though the French government stepped in (as French governments are oft wont to do) a few years back and instructed the big chains to open the scheme up to small, independent cinemas, who are reimbursed €4.90 for each ticket bought using the subscription cards.

MK2 also announced recently that they will be opening another multiplex in the 19th arrondissement - the north-east of Paris. Their last three multiplexes at Quai de la Seine, across the canal at Quay de la Loire, and beside the Bibliothèque Nationale, are the greatest of their kind I've ever seen anywhere. The new one should be great too. Now all one asks is that they open up their great new Video on Demand web service to Mac users; if you want to fight Internet piracy, give us the movies, I'll gladly pay!