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[Well-curated] Climbing enters cinemas as movies go outside

Climb at a multiplex, go out for a maskless movie, immerse yourself in history

Jan. 21, 2022 - 09:00 By Korea Herald
Watching movies at theaters without masks now seems a distant memory due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, which still shows no sign of ending. For this reason, you might be more interested in going climbing in your local movie theater than watching a film in it, which is precisely why CJ CGV has turned one of its movie theaters into a climbing venue for health-conscious moviegoers. If you‘re still itching to watch a movie on the big screen, we'd recommend seeking out a drive-in movie theater. If you're looking to spice up your daily routine, perhaps try Getty Image’s Seoul exhibition, which offers viewers the opportunity to see iconic photographs first-hand.

Interior view of Peakers (CJ CGV)

Indoor climbing has begun to ascend in popularity as a perfect beginner-friendly hobby, especially during the winter.
In recognition of this, South Korea’s largest multiplex cinema chain, CJ CGV, has become the latest to venture into the field, having opened its first indoor climbing venue, Peakers, at CGV Piccadilly 1958 movie theater in Jongno, central Seoul. This new venue has been created through an extensive renovation of two of its auditoriums, making full use of the location‘s large footprint and high ceilings.

Visitors try a climbing wall at Peakers in CGV Piccadilly 1958 in Jongno, Seoul, on Jan. 13. (Yonhap)
This indoor climbing location provides users with multiple climbing courses, with five peaks, one island, and one endurance wall. This new space comes in tandem with the opening of a new store within the movie theater, where customers can buy climbing equipment such as chalk and sports tape.

“In line with people’s desire to improve their health and physical strength amid the pandemic, we decided to convert a theater to a leisure facility for the first time. ... We hope the multiplex area becomes not only a place to watch movies but also to enjoy fresh leisure culture activities,” a CGV official said. 

Visitors try a climbing wall at Peakers in CGV Piccadilly 1958 in Jongno, Seoul, on Jan. 13. (Yonhap)
Prices vary depending on the type of vouchers, but it costs 20,000 won ($16.80) for an adult’s one-day pass. If you want to add a trial lesson, it costs 30,000 won. Regular memberships for one month and three months are 130,000 won and 300,000 won, respectively. 

For an opening event, potential users can purchase memberships with a 10 percent discount until Jan. 31. Those who visit the venue before 4 p.m. from Monday to Friday will receive a 3,000 won discount as well.

Peakers opens at 10 a.m. every day and closes at 9 p.m. in line with the government’s toughened social distancing measures. Opening hours may be subject to change depending on COVID-related rules. 

Getty Images exhibition in Seoul 
“Desperation Drives Women to Self Immolation in Herat” by Paula Bronstein (Getty Images)
For decades, historic moments have been captured in now iconic photographs by both photographers and photojournalists. Many of these are held by Getty Images, which was established in 1995 in London, and has grown into a visual media powerhouse, holding the distribution rights to more than 400 million images and 12 million videos.

A new exhibition, “Moving the World with Images,” at the Hangaram Art Museum in Seocho-gu, southern Seoul, celebrates this legacy in an expansive display of Getty Images’ works, with some 330 works curated under the theme “Connect.”

Many of the images on display will already be familiar to audiences, including the world-famous “New York Construction Workers Lunching on a Crossbeam.” This photograph, taken in 1932, depicts 11 construction workers enjoying lunch while suspended 260 meters above the New York City streets.

“Gorillas New Threat of Extinction” by Brent Stirton (Getty Images)
The exhibition also features works by six photojournalists from across the world: Paula Bronstein, Mario Tama, Benjamin Lowy, Brent Stirton, John Moore and Chris Hondros. Among the works on display, “Desperation Drives Women to Self Immolation In Herat,” taken by Bronstein in 2004, shows an 18-year-old Afghan woman suffering severe burns from self-immolation that covered 70 percent of her body.

As a visual prologue, the first room of the exhibition, “In the Dark,” sheds light on Getty Images’ digital archival processes, alongside the history of the visual media company.

“Moving the World With Images” will run through March 27 at the Hangaram Art Museum in Seocho-gu, southern Seoul. The museum is closed Mondays.

Jayuro Drive-in Theater
Jayuro Drive-in Theater (Jayuro Drive-in Theater)
If you want to watch the latest film without wearing a mask, Jayuro Drive-in Theater in Paju, Gyeonggi Province, lets you watch movies on the big screen with family and friends from the comfort of their car.

Popcorn and soda aside, various foods are offered to the visitors, including coffee, juice, ade, hot dogs, cup noodles and more. If you want to eat something different, food delivery services are also available.

The theater has three screens almost 10 meters in height, allowing more than 200 cars to enjoy the film.

After purchasing the ticket, your car will be guided to a space, allocated according to model -- passenger cars at the front and larger vehicles further back.

The sound is provided through an FM radio broadcasting service.

“Special Cargo,” “Spider-Man: No Way Home” and “The Policeman’s Lineage” are available this week.

Entrance is 25,000 per car. The catch is that there are no reservations, so you might have to get there a couple hours early to secure a spot, as the outdoor theaters have become popular during the COVID-19 pandemic.

More information can be found at the official website of Jayuro Drive-in Theater.