Movies at the majestic Mayfair

There’s nothing better to end a long work week than an easy night at the movies. Here in Ottawa, we’re lucky to have the always charming, highly characteristic, somewhat sticky-floored Mayfair Theatre.

I headed to this independent theatre in Old Ottawa South last Friday night to catch a double-bill with a friend. Our selection that night? Best Worst Movie (a documentary) and Troll 2 (cheesy 1990 “horror” flick).

The Mayfair has been in operation since 1932, making it one of Ottawa's old independent movie houses!

This is why I love the Mayfair.  While these two films go hand-in-hand — Troll 2 had been voted as the “worst movie ever made,” spawning a cult following and the subsequent documentary — the Mayfair doesn’t focus on the latest hits or biggest moneymakers , but rather seeks to offer a unique and memorable movie-going experience.

Friday’s event was a bit special because they had brought in one of the stars from the movie to do a meet-and-greet and a Q&A. Just like the Mayfair, George Hardy was genuine, likable and didn’t take himself too seriously. (Best Worst Movie will confirm that for you!) The dentist-turned-one-time-actor from Alabama had a southern drawl, larger than life smile and earnest charm that can’t be taught.

Me and dentist/one-time actor George Hardy, a star from Troll 2, one of the worst movies ever made.

But it gets better! Hosted by Lee Demarbre, Mayfair co-owner and local director who saved the cinema from near-certain closure in late 2008 ,  the event  served as a fundraiser for community radio station CKCU.

Some other great things the Mayfair has to offer:

  • Best movie popcorn in Ottawa
  • Licensed events
  • Mere $6 standard ticket price for members
  • Kid-friendly matinees on weekends
  • Host to a variety of film fests / filmmaking competitions, workshops and the Ottawa International Writers Fest

By the way, Best Worst Movie comes out on DVD today … Check it out for some genuine belly laughs.

And want your own chance to experience your own BEST bad cinema? The Mayfair’s hosting Tommy Wiseau, director, writer and star of The Room, for three showings in January. Drop us a line, if you’re going to check it out!