Monday, April 20, 2009

The Nan Jao Rama Theater - Nan, Thailand

If you were to walk down the little alley where the trees are in the above photo you will find the remains of one of the most awkwardly situated movie theaters in all of northern Thailand. The soi (alley) that the Nan Jao Rama Theater is in dead ends after only about 50 meters. Its lack of depth combined with its narrowness make it hard to imagine crowds ever lined up to watch movies here, but stranger things have happened, I suppose.

Bizarre place for a movie theater.

By the account of the restaurateur opposite the theater, the Nan Jao Rama Theater has only been closed for 5 or 6 years, though it looks like a lost relic from ages ago. It was only built 30 or so years prior, not so long, but just in time to meet the fatal wrath of the home entertainment center.

The same restaurateur said that the owner leased it out to a chicken farmer for a while; an odd industry for being in the middle of the most densely populated area of town. It's now completely vacant, missing its roof and awaiting its complete and total destruction.

Incidentally, the old Nan city wall once passed through this alley, just in front of where the remains of the Nan Jao Rama Theater stand. Of course, the city wall of Nan predated the alley by about 3 centuries and the theater even longer than that, going back to when Nan was the sovereign kingdom of Nantaburi. Kingdom, province, city, whatever unit of administration you want to call it, it doesn't have any cool movie theaters anymore.

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