Hi, Indie Film Lover! Black Maria Cinema here.

Posted on Posted in Lifestyle, Philippines, Uncategorized

Liking the kind of films that mainstream wouldn’t dare does not make you a film snob. You would still fall for the rom-com of Star Cinema, but Cinema One Originals and Cinemalaya films would sure hit you with much more realism. And Black Maria Cinema knows that.

Black Maria Cinema is a microcinema screening local and international indie films. Here, indie films are meant to be screened for a long while so you don’t have to worry that the indie film you’ve been waiting for would be moved out of the mall theatres due to low profit. Because here at Black Maria Cinema, film appreciation is not dead.


Movie Experience

With the Netflix and iFlix taking over us on our couch, it’s still nice to sit in a dark room with like-minded strangers.  Black Maria Cinema has 30 seats in front of a 20ft screen with 2K digital cinema projection and 7.1 Dolby Digital Surround Sound. Owners are producers themselves so they know how important it is for the filmmakers to see their movie on a big screen. They allow alcohol inside but drink moderately or you don’t want to lose yourself in a micro cinema, pretty please.

Black Maria Cinema



Black Maria Cinema is owned and managed by Angelo Santos, his wife Sarah, and sister Pat. It is once a final screening room of films produced by SQ Film Productions which is owned by Angelo’s grandparents, (SQ stands for Santos and Quilatan). SQ Film Productions produced movies such as Joey Gosiengfiao’s Kambal sa Uma and Carlo Caparas’ Ang Huling Lalaki sa Baluarte. As they moved from celluloid to digital technology, they have renamed their production company into Black Maria Pictures and the once private screening room is now offered to the public as microcinema namely, Black Maria Cinema.


Santiago’s Cafe

Santiago’s Cafe is a flamingo themed restaurant beside the microcinema. It serves as a waiting area of the moviegoers and a restaurant where you can ponder on the subliminal meaning of the movie afterward.

 Black Maria Cinema

Black Maria Cinema
With one of the owners, Ms. Patricia Quilatan Santos.

Related Article: Dreamy Unicorn Cafe | Why It’s For Nostalgic Millenials

Black Maria Cinema for Indie films.

With the 2016 Metro Manila Film Fest issue of “profit over art”, we can’t deny the struggle of indie films vs mainstream. And how we hate it when business wins over film appreciation. Hail to the artistry of filmmakers who transcends ideas given the limited budget. Hail to the ideologies they want to convey that the mainstream would not dare. Hail as to how they continue to fight the battle that the audience deserves mind-awakening stories.

This article is also seen on https://www.wheninmanila.com/5-reasons-why-black-maria-cinema-should-be-your-next-beshie-date/


Facebook Page: facebook.com/BlackMariaCinema

779 San Rafael Street, SQ Film Laboratories Building, Plainview (0.99 mi)
Mandaluyong 1550

(02) 782 4566

9 thoughts on “Hi, Indie Film Lover! Black Maria Cinema here.

  1. That surely looks like a happening place. Especially loved the idea and the quirky decor. Im sure you had a good experience!

  2. Oh I have never heard of this kind of cinema before but what a great idea for those who want to see films that are a little outside main stream movies! Great idea!

  3. What an innovative movie experience where folks can watch indie films without going to large mass theater chains. I love the history of the theater and the owners and of course, the flamingo inspired restaurant, Santiago’s Cafe.

  4. I love supporting Indie films and this is a nice move to have an entire place solely dedicated for the showing of these films. Young moviemakers are given the chance to showcase their works. But I am careful with the Indie films that I watch. A lot of them have so much rage, violence, darkness, and sex. I want to see more happy themes in Indie films.

  5. Black Maria Cinema looks like a wonderful place not only to enjoy Indie movies but as a way to build community. I love how comfortable it looks and its amenities.

  6. That sounds like a wonderful experience! I’d love to visit there! The decor of Santiago’s Cafe and delicacies look just amazing!

  7. Black Maria Cinema sounds like an amazing experience. I love the fact that the owners are producers themselves.

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