City Organizer: Jose Marques Carrico
Walk Leader: Jose Marques Carrico
Text by: Jose Marques Carrico
Photographs by: Miryam Regina D’Almeida
From the 1950s to 1980s, Santos was the city with the highest number of cinemas per capita in Brazil. The theme of our Jane’s Walk, on May 6, was to uncover the history of some now-closed movie theaters. We took a two-hour walk, stopping in front of 11 old movie theaters in the Gonzaga neighborhood, which has the highest concentration of projection rooms of the city.
Participants took turns telling stories of the golden age of these theaters. During the walk, we discussed the urban quality of the now-closed movie theaters, with their generous privately owned public spaces, and the loss of these spaces in the buildings that have replaced them.
We also took the opportunity to discuss the walkability problems of the neighborhood and the city, and the need to ensure larger, more comfortable and safer spaces for pedestrians and cyclists.
Near the end of the walk, we went into a movie theater that has been turned into a parking garage. It was exciting and sad.
We ended the walk by watching Cinema Paradiso in the only remaining street cinema. At the end of the movie, a cinema is demolished to make way for a parking lot. Life imitates art.