Best Source of Nostalgia for Visions
West End Cinema
2301 M St. NW, (202) 419-FILM
For Washingtonians of a certain age, the hoopla over the opening of the West End Cinema last fall was a bit of a mystery. That age, in this case, is somewhere in the mid-to-late-’20s—it was only a little more than six years ago, after all, that the city bid farewell to Visions, another independent theater specializing in arty movies that served beer and wine. And it didn’t just serve beer and wine; Visions, at 20th Street NW and Florida Avenue, reveled in it. There was a bar in the lobby that was always packed, no matter what movies were showing on the two screens in the building. The theater used to hold “Kick the Keg” Friday night screenings, where 10 bucks bought you a movie ticket, a plastic cup, and all the beer you could drink from a keg in the front row. On Christmas, Visions showed Jewish-themed movies in the bar, free of charge, and served latkes. Worst of all, since Visions went out of business in 2004, nothing’s taken its place. Obviously in this age of overpriced Hollywood crap (and even better, endless sequels to overpriced Hollywood crap), the opening of a new indie theater last fall was good news. But it sure did make some of us miss the old one.