Time Out Melbourne

This venue is closed

Film buff Gus Berger is breathing new life into St Kilda stalwart the George cinema by screening old classics alongside new releases

From a post-punk venue to a high-end hotel, the George Building in St Kilda’s Fitzroy Street has had many incarnations. Now the defunct cinema, which shut down two and a half years ago, has been reopened by local cinema aficionado Gus Berger as the George Revival Cinema.

Armed with a six-month lease on the twin cinemas, Berger is giving film fans an eclectic mix of movies. One cinema has retains its original 35mm projector to screen classics, while the other room has a digitised projector, on loan from Yarraville’s Sun Theatre, screening new releases.

Themed nights feature spotlights on actors from Ben Mendelsohn to Ryan Gosling, but also directors, with Sofia Coppola getting a nod in the next couple of weeks with the screening of her latest film The Bling Ring alongside her cult favourites The Virgin Suicides and Lost in Translation.

Music has historically played a huge role in the building – after all, it was where Nick Cave's Boys Next Door were said to have cut their teeth in the ’70s – and the George acknowledges this with a spotlight such as the one on the Rolling Stones in coming weeks. “It becomes like a mini-festival,” says Berger. By becoming a ‘Friend of the George’, you will have access to cheap tickets and giveaways and also get a chance to create your own mini festival by suggesting to Berger what you want to see.

Berger has masterminded various pop-up cinema events around Melbourne. For now, he’s found the perfect place to sit tight until the lease runs out in February 2014. “It's always had a strong connection for me,” he says of the George Cinema. “It just got neglected and unloved towards the end.”

Berger has brought the love back to the space. Images of Melbourne’s cinematic past adorn the walls so punters can sit back with a glass of wine and enjoy visual reminders of cinemas of yesteryear. Even though the future of the cinema hangs in the balance, film fans have been flocking back to the venue, including one movie buff whom it seems never left.

“Well... I was told by one of the projectionists that someone has seen a ghost in the operating booth of the main cinema,” Berger starts, before admitting that he too has had the same supernatural encounter. “It’s a friendly ghost who just wants to see the cinema continue.”

More films & film festivals in Melbourne? Sign up for our Weekend Planner

Updated on 10 Jun 2014.

By Penni Pappas   |  

The George Revival Cinema details

135 Fitzroy St, St Kilda 3182

This venue is closed

The George Revival Cinema map

Report a problem with this page

Restaurants and bars nearby

The George Public Bar

22m - Beneath the opulent Melbourne Wine Room is the George Basement. And it may...

Pizza e Birra

33m - The name translates to pizza and beer. Need we say more? Kids and the...

GB Espresso

57m - Occupying the waning Grocery Bar site, the renovated new café is helping...

Babu Ji

58m - Dhaba at the Mill had people trekking as far as Kyneton for its...

More restaurants and bars nearby

Other venues nearby

The Alex Theatre

 The George Cinemas are reborn as a theatre venue with three...

Palace George

This St Kilda cinema is spread over two levels and three auditoriums – not...

The George Ballroom

21m - It’s one of Melbourne’s fabled venues – a bit like the Flinders Street...


57m - One of the best second hand bookshops in Melbourne (and there are many,...

More venues nearby
Petit Piknic

Petit Piknic

Melbourne's got the most fun, family-friendly Sunday session at Piknic Electronik

Readers' comments, reviews, hints and pictures

Community guidelines

blog comments powered by Disqus

Get the Time Out weekend planner. Straight to your inbox, every Thursday.
Read more