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Cinema has always held a special place in my heart. Back in Kerala, India where I spent most of my life, going to the movies twice a month was a cherished routine. I relished the aroma of Tapioca chips and popcorn, the excitement of sitting in a dimly lit theatre, and the thrill of watching stories unfold on the big screen. So, when I moved to the Third, specifically Sydney, Nova Scotia, last year, I was naturally eager to continue this tradition. Little did I know that my expectations would be met with a dose of reality that left me pondering the stark differences between the cinema experiences in these two worlds.

My first visit to Cineplex Sydney was quite the eye-opener. To say I was taken by surprise would be an understatement. In Kerala, a trip to the local theatre was a budget-friendly affair, with ticket prices that allowed you to catch the latest blockbuster without breaking the bank. The facilities were clean, the seats comfortable, and the screens, clear and vibrant. I remember being able to treat my family to a movie night for the same price I'd pay for a single ticket here in Sydney.

Moreover, the comforts offered at theatres in India far surpassed what I encountered at Cineplex Sydney. In India, plush, reclining seats with ample legroom and state-of-the-art screens have become the norm. The immersive experience of watching a film is heightened by the quality of the facilities, making every visit to the cinema a memorable one.

To be fair, I must acknowledge that Cineplex Sydney had its advantages. One of the most pleasant surprises was the presence of international movies, offering a diverse selection. It was heartening to find a slice of the world's cinema right here in Cape Breton.

In India, going to the movies is an event. It's an outing, a celebration, and a communal experience, whether you're sitting in a plush multiplex or a charming neighbourhood cinema. It's not unusual to witness a packed house, with people of all ages, backgrounds, and walks of life coming together to be moved by the magic of storytelling. Back in Kerala, my cinema outings often felt like a cultural celebration. The theatres buzzed with energy and enthusiasm, the audience's reactions were spontaneous and genuine, and the overall experience was a lively one. While Sydney's Cineplex was undoubtedly a comfortable place to watch a film, it didn't quite capture that same sense of shared excitement and fervor that I had grown accustomed to.

Of course, comparing these two worlds is not entirely fair, as each has its own unique charm. In Sydney, the cinema is a part of the larger entertainment experience, while in Kerala, it's woven into the very fabric of life. I find myself appreciating the best of both worlds now, cherishing the accessibility and international selection of movies in Cape Breton, while still yearning for the bustling atmosphere of a Kerala theater.

In the end, as I continue my movie adventures in Sydney, I've learned to appreciate the diversity in cinema experiences. While it may be more expensive and less communal than what I was accustomed to, it offers a new perspective on the magic of the silver screen. After all, the universal language of cinema transcends borders and brings us all closer together, regardless of where we are.

Photo by Felix Mooneeram on Unsplash

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