In 1907 , on the ground floor of the building on Falkenwalder Strasse , Otto Blauert presented the cinematograph to the people of Stettin for the first time . The German city called Stettin is now the Polish city Szczecin . Falkenwalder Street is now Wojska Polskiego Avenue , and the theater is still in operation.
Ada and I went over there a few nights ago to see the Woody Allen film Cafe Society . Neither of us was overly impressed with the film . Ada thought that it lacked passion . We both thought it’s characterization shallow . I thought that Woody Allen’s narration was dull and the script of the narration too stilted . Sorry , Woody , we’re not recommending this one .
To my story , however .
Otto Blauert sold the place to the Pietze couple in 1908 . They called it the ” Welt Theater ” , and later the ” Welt Lichtpiele “, a name in use until the outbreak of the war in 1939 . They showed “comedies , dramas , and moral films ” says the pamphlet now available at the theater . I’m plagiarizing from the pamphlet as this post progresses , changing a few words here and there in case the cosmic teacher catches me and I have to talk myself out of trouble .
One further comment on the Woody Allen film , before I continue . It’s set in the 1930s . I like period pieces , but I have one trivial complaint here . In one scene the young man follows the girl toward the elevator . The elevator door opens and she intends to enter , but she doesn’t because she waits outside the elevator to talk to him , a few last words . She reaches her arm out and the automatic door reopens , as elevator doors now do . They didn’t do that , however , in the 1930s .The first patent for safety bumpers on elevator doors came along in 1944 . Later came the infra-red sensors we are familiar with in modern elevators . Where was the film crew person whose job it is to check those details ? I know , I know , it’s a very minor and trivial item , but something is right or it isn’t right . Right ? Henry Ford had a new factory building torn door because it was 1/4 inch off square .
Well , on second thought , I’m thankful that no one holds me to that strict standard .To my story again , however .
And then came the war . When peace finally came , the Germans were moved out of the city and Poles from the east moved in . On 26th December , 1945 , the first film projection in the Polish Szczecin was held . The audience saw Ivan the Terrible by Sergei Eisenstein with music by Sergei Prokofiev . The theater was then called the Odra , but soon changed its name to the ” Pionier “, the name it still has today .
Well , let me simply quote from the pamphlet : In September 1999 , Jerzy Miskiewicz and Waclaw Szewczyk became the owners of the “Pionier” cinema. At the beginning of the twenty-first century the cinema was renovated . On 7th November , 2000 another screen was installed in the cinema in a brand new room called ” Kiniarnia ” . It is a unique place where the audience can sit comfortably by the tables and enjoy a cup of tea or a glass of wine during the projection of the film. In 2003 , the “Pionier” cinema was included into the prestigious Europa Cinemas network . In August 2005 , ” Pionier ” was recognized as the oldest cinema in the world and entered the Guinness Book of World Records .