The Cliftex Experience

The movie theater has long been an American staple. The movies offer an escape from the stresses of everyday life, and during summer they allow one to get away from the hot Texas sun and cool down with an iced soda. The movie theater has evolved as time has passed since they have gotten bigger, more complex, and more expensive. These modern theaters are a great feat of modern engineering, but they also lack much of the character of the theaters from yesteryear.

The Cliftex, located in Clifton, Texas, is the oldest continuously operating movie theater in Texas. Opened to the public in 1916, it offers a throwback to simpler times. The cinema plays a single movie at one time since there is only one screen in the theater. Admission is affordably priced, and five dollars will buy you popcorn and a drink. The interior and exterior of Cliftex reflects its rich, nearly century long history with many original art deco features. Interestingly, Cliftex still embraces the use of intermission in their showings. Before April 2011, 35 mm film was still in use at Cliftex, and therefore intermission was necessary for reel film changes. Although 35 mm film is no longer used today, the tradition of intermission is still maintained.

This charismatic movie theater keeps many Texas and cinematic traditions alive and accessible to the public. Located only about 45 minutes from Waco, it is well worth a trip down to Clifton to get a genuine 20th century small town Texas cinema experience.  

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