The NEW New Wave
September 7, 2004 9:31 PM   Subscribe

Underground French Cinema (literally) Three days later, when the police returned accompanied by experts from the French electricity board to see where the power was coming from, the phone and electricity lines had been cut and a note was lying in the middle of the floor: "Do not," it said, "try to find us." A secret underground cinema is found in the Catacombs of Paris, "You guys have no idea what's down there." Perhaps it's the work of a group of cataphiles called the "Perforating Mexicans".
posted by biscotti (17 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Wow! Thanks, biscotti, news doesn't get cooler than that.
For anyone who, like me, won't quite believe that this is a real story without seeing it in French: Un cinéma souterrain a été découvert.
posted by Zurishaddai at 9:50 PM on September 7, 2004

...The Diggers believe," says Mikhailov, "that regardless of barriers one can pass unnoticed under the ground.....Beneath the city are passageways, chambers of torture, and about 150 underground riverbeds lined with bricks and white stone. Studying the masonry and brickwork, the researchers found marks left by old stonemasons; they could even date..... "
posted by troutfishing at 9:57 PM on September 7, 2004

Oh, and wtf is "la Mexicaine de perforation" supposed to mean... "Eardrum-piercing Mexican chick"?
posted by Zurishaddai at 10:05 PM on September 7, 2004

"Do not," it said, "try to find us."

"By the hairless chin of Turkmenbashi," swore the bearded seaman, enervated. "Do you know what this means?"

"WOAH," barked the white airedale, startled by the profanity into looking up from a shoe he was worrying.

"Hello!" exclaimed the youth to his dog. "What's that you've found?"
posted by mwhybark at 10:54 PM on September 7, 2004

biscotti, I kiss you!
posted by taz at 12:34 AM on September 8, 2004

Damnit, I came here to post the same thing!

I love the note they found 3 days later (after the phone and electrics had been cut) which simply says "do not try to find us" in the centre of the floor. How many other hidden gems are there underneath Paris?
posted by BigCalm at 1:09 AM on September 8, 2004


Fantasises about those troglodytes in Delicatessen.
posted by Blue Stone at 4:36 AM on September 8, 2004

Crap. I lived in the 16e for a couple of years when I was ten. Had I only know what treasure lay underneath I would never have wasted my time with mundane stuff like cops and robbers.
posted by smcniven at 5:33 AM on September 8, 2004

Excellent, excellent, excellent post. I especially like this part: »There exist, however, several secretive bands of so-called cataphiles, who gain access to the tunnels mainly after dark, through drains and ventilation shafts, and hold what in the popular imagination have become drunken orgies but are, by all accounts, innocent underground picnics.«

I want in on these picnics. Seriously. I don't know how and I don't know when, but dammit. Maybe I'll have to found my own secret society, after all there are a few unused underground tunnels around my hometown.
posted by soundofsuburbia at 5:59 AM on September 8, 2004

Here's another article about the Mikhailov character troutfishing linked to. This Disused stations on the London Underground thread is also cool.

Great link biscotti. I hope we find out who built and who uses it.
posted by toby\flat2 at 6:12 AM on September 8, 2004

Great link and very neat story, although (and I hate to ask this, but) are we sure there are societies down there, and it's not just a few geeky homeless hooligan dropout types looking to mess with people's heads?

Because there's a few of those in New York. Or so I've heard.
posted by chicobangs at 8:29 AM on September 8, 2004

Some cool urban adventure links: Jinx Magazine, Infiltration (here is their take on the catacombs). And here is a dusty old Salon story on a different kind of subway cinema.
posted by stonerose at 9:04 AM on September 8, 2004

Those damn homeless hooligan dropouts with their underground lairs comprising of fully kitted out cinemas, bars, and security watch posts.
posted by toby\flat2 at 9:16 AM on September 8, 2004

It's the Morlocks. Damn mutie scum.
posted by keswick at 9:20 AM on September 8, 2004

great link.
haven't been in the catacombs for years.
that theater is a great idea.
posted by Busithoth at 9:24 AM on September 8, 2004

Hey, I never said they weren't real inventive, or probably a great bunch to hang and do subversive shit with. I was just asking if anyone knew if it was a real multilayered subterranean society or just a totally cool geeked-out dropout scene.

I'm going to be dreaming about the concept tonight either way.
posted by chicobangs at 9:37 AM on September 8, 2004

what in the popular imagination have become drunken orgies but are, by all accounts, innocent underground picnics

I don't know about you, but I'd be pretty disappointed if I joined the Perforating Mexicans hoping for orgies and instead got picnics. I mean, picnics are all well and good, but they're not exactly orgies. What I'd really like to know is what was on the playbill at this theater, I envision it being things like Godard's Breathless or Truffaut's Jules et Jim, but what if it was more like The Nutty Professor? (and kudos for the link go to my friend Steve)
posted by biscotti at 9:39 AM on September 8, 2004

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