City Landmarks – Pepsi, Popcorns & Stairs at Satyam

Checking out a new multiplex in town.

[By Meenakshi Chauhan; she owns the blog Love It or Leave it; picture by Satyam Cineplexes]

Loyalty has no bounds! Since my boss’s son worked on the film Jhoom Barabar Jhoom, panned in almost every newspaper review, I felt I had to see it. Another incentive was that it was directed by Shaad Ali who has made lovely films like Saathiya and Bunti Aur Bubli.

So the other day we decided to invest two precious hours of our lives on it and went to Satyam, a new multiplex in town. Opened this June, it’s a branch of the original Satyam which is in Patel Nagar.

My two friends and I reached Nehru Place, which happenes to be Delhi’s biggest software bazaar, around 6. The show was to start twenty minutes later. Outside the cinema hall cars were parked on both sides of the road with not an inch of parking space available. For any movie-going Delhite this, alas, is a common sight.

With all the confusion and mayhem around this congested part of the city random thoughts of fights with parking attendants, Delhi traffic police, car getting towed and challans came to my mind. But suddenly I saw a sign saying “7 Storeys Parking Available”. A brilliant discovery! Right next to the cinema hall too! The parking plaza was of international standards, with lifts that were playing instrumental music. Of course, it all came for a price – Rs 20 for 2 hours, and a minute longer meant paying Rs 20 more.

Parking problem dealt with, we rushed to the theatre, 1 ticket – 175 bucks. What! In Mumbai it’s the norm but Delhi? The best halls here have a standard ticket for 150/- . Oh well.. It’s for a good cause! We owed it to the boss’s son to see the first film he had worked on.

We finally entered the glitzy complex. There was Pizza Hut and McDonalds on the ground floor while the upper floors, which housed the auditoriums, were stylishly designed and elegantly-lit.

The auditorium itself was well laid out but here are the downsides:

The popcorn was horribly stale and costs too much – think Chanakya cinema popcorn but with double the price! Avoid it.

The Pepsi was in an insanely huge glass – 1 litre no less.

The combo – Popcorn & Pepsi cost around Rs 150 (I don’t remember the exact figure as I was flabbergasted.) It took all three of us to finish the glass.

The seats did not recline. Yes, you could have pushed them back but if you were short in height like me your feet wouldn’t have touched the ground.

The air-conditioning was too Arctic. I had goose bumps because I was sooo cold. But that could be because there were only ten people in the audience.

The stairs were dangerous. The scariest moment came when my pregnant friend went to the loo in the dark. The staircase was almost a straight wall (as against a soft hill incline) and we were seated at the top.

And yes, the film was quite unbearable except for the one song that is presently topping the charts – Jhoom Barabar Jhoom. However this song lasts over half an hour which was a bit too much. Other songs like Ticket to Hollywood and Kiss of Love had a good tempo but with nonsense lyrics and with no relevance to the already weak plot were quite a pain.

In all, the new multiplex was not bad but why pay such an obscenely high price when you can enjoy films in better ones at cheaper rates?

[This article was written exclusively for The Delhi Walla.]