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Le Beverley, The Last Porn Cinema in Paris to Close Its Doors

Photographer: Christophe Petit Tesson

 

In a tiny alley of the Grands Boulevards in the heart of Paris' entertainment district, the French capital's last porn movie theater has been proudly displaying its pink neon tubes since 1975.

 

Its projection room, seats, posters, and cash register are all originals from the 70s.

 

A few years ago, “Le Beverley” was just one of many others in the neighborhood, but now, at a time of fierce competition from easy-to-access pornography available for free on the internet, they have all closed down, one by one.

And while the cinema’s 74-year-old owner Maurice Laroche is holding out for a few last showings,Le Beverley will also drop its final curtain and close its doors in March 2018.

 

Public screenings of X-rated movies were authorized in France in 1975 during the sexual liberation movement. Laroche remembers the golden age, when his theater was almost more popular than his iconic neighbor: "Le Grand Rex." At that time, he was only the projectionist, and had not yet bought the cinema.

 

During a time when there were few taboos, men and women came without shame to see the Xrated blockbusters of the moment. One of Laroche’s friends even worked as an assistant to the famous director Jean-Luc Godard before going on to become a porn movie director.

 

Laroche has aged a bit, the world has changed, and there is no one to take over from him. He yearns to place his treasure—more than 150 copies of his beloved 35mm films from 1970-1990—in good hands.

 

Some of them are masterpieces of a genre that, apart from his loyal clientele of older men, can also be of interest to younger viewers, curious to see what actresses looked like before surgery and minimalist body hair became the trend.