Sunshine Cinema

143 E. Houston Street,
New York, NY 10002

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Showing 76 - 100 of 105 comments

William on February 14, 2006 at 11:16 am

Yes, the film is in scope. Most chains stopped installing 2.1 ratio screens instead of a full ratio scope screen. But there are still plexes that still run films to the public that way.

Mikeoaklandpark on February 14, 2006 at 10:56 am

Could it be the film was in scope an they don’t have scope screen? I say that because there is a theater here in Asheville( Regal Hollywood 14 which was oringally independantly owned by a family)that does not have scopr screens. I never liked that theater and Sat night I finally asked a manager if they had capability of showing scope and she said only in one theater. The other theaters were built with flat screens and you really loose the scope effect becuase anything extra is on the side walls and above the screen. I was pissed to say the least.

John Fink
John Fink on February 14, 2006 at 10:25 am

My experiences have been good there, but since its a Mark Cuban owned house…they better be able to do better than watching it in your living room on DVD or HD Net Movies….

I have always liked this house, I ussually go on weekends the crowds are good as are the staff and the seats are comfortable, it’s better than the Angelika (even though i have a soft spot for the Angelika for some reason). Even the most high-end movie houses can have their off days.

hardbop on February 14, 2006 at 7:55 am

I was down at the Landmark’s Sunshine Cinema yesterday and another projection disaster. There is all this hand-wringing in the movie industry about the decline in movie attendance/box office take and here is a reason why. I was in the big basement theatre yesterday to see THE WORLD’S FASTEST INDIAN and they didn’t frame the film correctly so there was about a foot of black at the top of the screen and the image bled onto the masking at the bottom. All this for $10.75.

And they didn’t even put the house lights up before the film so one had to negotiate steep stairs in pitch black to find a seat.

No usher walked through the theatre so to alert someone would have meant leaving the theatre, climbing a flight of stairs and then walking across the lobby to the candy stand, doubled as the box office yesterday because of short staffing. I would have missed too much of the movie to tell them to project the film properly.

I had the same problem at the Angelika last year. You think this kind of thing would occur in the soulless multiplexes, but to have it happen in an art house, it makes my blood boil.

No wonder people are staying at home watching the videos.

Judith Thissen
Judith Thissen on January 28, 2006 at 7:05 am

Charles Steiner and Abraham Minsky — the oldest of the famous Minsky burlesque brothers — opened the Houston Hippodrome in December 1909 as a Yiddish music hall. Minsky’s father and the notorious kosher chicken czar and Tammany Hall district leader Martin Engel owned the building, a former church, which had been operated for some time as prize fight club. In 1910, Yonah Shimmel opened his knish bakery next door. In those days, movies and cheap dairy food went hand in hand (which also explains the location of Ratner’s next-door to Loew’s Delancey Street Theater). The Houston Hippodrome offered a mix program of motion pictures and Yiddish vaudeville for five cents in the afternoon and ten cents at night. In 1912, Steiner & Minsky moved their variety show to the National Winter Garden, the roof top theater above Boris Thomashefsky’s National Theater (at 111 Houston Street)and the Houston Hippodrome was downgraded to a nickelodeon. In those days, the sign of the theater already featured a shining sun. In 1917, Steiner bought the building and after a $25,000 renovation opened it as the 600-seat Sunshine Theater. There was some talk in the Yiddish press that it might become a Yiddish theater, but to my knowledge nothing came of this. It remained a movie theater.

Greenpoint on November 21, 2005 at 4:27 pm

Lets not forget about the delicious Yonah Schimmel Knishes next door, My favorites are the Red Cabbge ,Cabbbage, Sweet Potato and Regular… I remember the Sunshine when it was a wharehouse, often I would pass by the Sunshine on the way to Yonah Schimmels on Chrystie and Houston Street..I’d see the door open up and would glance in. In fact I bought fireworks in there in 1995 (as a wharehouse ofcourse)…its great to see a movie over there.

Garth on October 29, 2005 at 3:14 pm

i recently saw the film “2046” here , the theatre was huge compared to cinema village and the quad. however i was also stunned by the paper receipt, as were other posters….

hardbop on October 3, 2005 at 8:36 am

Kind of weird bookings at the Sunshine this week with three films opening Friday exclusively at the Landmark and all look dead in the water.

The strange opening was CARLITO’S WAY: RISE TO POWER, which wasn’t even screened for the press. It is also not an art film. I assume it has something to do with the digital projection and the fact that the film opened simultanseously with the DVD release. This film is an odd booking for an art house. It is the type of B movie that would have been booked on the old 42nd Street.

Also opening exclusively there was MIRRORMASK and THE WAR WITHIN.

I don’t plan to see any of them.

RobertR on July 7, 2005 at 8:33 am

The Sunshine is running “Psycho” Fri and Sat at midnight this weekend.

John Fink
John Fink on June 13, 2005 at 9:59 pm

I agree, I just came back from the Sunshine, its so weird to have these paper receipts, but I’ve seen other theatres do it (Cinema Village did, as well as Touchstar Southcase in Orlando, FL). I don’t like it, they’re harder to lose and at 10.75, what excuse do they have to be this cheap.

Granted, maybe trying a new technology is bold, but some how I see how Celluoid Freak is offeneded. Barcoding is one thing. A cheap supermarket-like receipt is in some ways unprofessional in the cinema industry. Besdies, I just like having a hard ticket in hand neatly organized. This aproach is wacky.

Maybe I’m just not ready for it. But I’m glad somebody else out there agrees with me.

celluloid on May 28, 2005 at 1:56 pm

They Are Not Tickets! They are Supermearket Receipts!

Ron Newman
Ron Newman on May 26, 2005 at 2:51 pm

Why are bar-coded tickets “stupid” ?

br91975 on May 26, 2005 at 2:42 pm

I suspect the idea of providing receipts as opposed to more traditional tickets is related to Landmark FINALLY getting its in-theatre self-service ticket kiosk system in some semblance of working order.

celluloid on May 26, 2005 at 2:12 pm

As of this past Tuesday the Sunshine stopped sells tickets but instead when you pay the addmission you recieve what looks like a supermarket receipt that gets zapped by a bar code reader carrying usher inside the theatre. Stupid, Stupid, Stupid.

hardbop on May 2, 2005 at 10:21 am

I walked run under the IFC/Waverly’s marquee yesterday and they are getting close to opening. They removed all the scaffolding and you can see the new front of the theatre. It is pretty impressive. I am keeping my fingers crossed that the IFC folks will do a great job, but given that Cablevision owns IFC they’ll find a way to alienate everyone somehow or some way.

celluloid on April 22, 2005 at 3:41 pm

Well, IFC is renovating the Waverly into a three-screener.

hardbop on April 20, 2005 at 3:42 pm

I never knew there was a theatre on this site, though I never spent much time on this stretch of Houston. Agree a great addition to the NYC movie going experience, but it is competing more with the Angelika than the Film Forum, which is a non-profit chartered to present films that otherwise wouldn’t get screened (though I don’t know who closely they follow that mandate).

I am also surprised to learn that it took three years to get this cinema open; it was worth the time because they did a nice job.

One other tidbit, not related to the Landmark/Sunshine, is that The Sundance people were long rumored to be building an art theatre “downtown” and one was supposed to open in Soho, but never did and plans are now defunct. There were also plans for a new art house in that new building that is going up on Astor Plaza, next to the Public Theatre, but I don’t know if they still plan a theatre in that complex.

celluloid on April 11, 2005 at 2:19 am

Compared to the other art movie houses in Manhattan (Angelika, Film Forum, Cinema Village) the film presentation at the Sunshine is by far the most superior. Actually, I’d say it’s on par with the mainstream theatres like Loews or Regal. Also, like many mainstream theatres if you didn’t like the movie you paid to see, it’s very easy to watch something else. Yah, the Sunshine is great!

bamtino on January 18, 2005 at 8:22 pm

One of the theatre’s earlier incarnations, the Houston Hippodrome, was designed by Thomas W. Lamb in 1909 (as a conversion from the Reformed German Evangelical Church, built in 1846).

bamtino on January 7, 2005 at 12:58 am

A murder suspect, later found guilty, used attendance at this theatre as an alibi on January 5, 2005’s episode of Law & Order. He claimed to have been seeing a “French flick” with his girlfriend on the night the murder occurred.

bamtino on November 27, 2004 at 8:19 pm

Jim, the Sunshine was definitely a Yiddish theatre, as were many other facilities throughout the Lower East Side neighborhood in which the theatre is located. However, the Sunshine was a motion picture theatre going by the name “Sunshine” before Mr. Darin was born. The National at 111-117 East Houston was still operational into the 1950s. I’m not sure when the 11 East Houston Yiddish National was operational.

RobertR: Why have you posted the City Cinemas note on this page? The Sunshine has no relationship at all to City Cinemas. (And you didn’t post such a note on the pages of those Manhattan theatres which that company does operate.)

RobertR on November 27, 2004 at 7:03 pm

BOYCOTT CITY CINEMAS- Read the postings on the page for Cinema 1,2,3. They may be pulling another Sutton scam.

macknife on November 27, 2004 at 6:49 pm

Damien…I stand corrected for now…note that I gleamed
that “inaccurate by your reckoning” info from one of the current Darin bio books, and I have no way to verify either point of info on this issue…from the “Sunshine Cinema” website comes this:

“Opened December 21, 2001. Built in 1898, the Sunshine Cinema building was formerly the Houston Hippodrome motion picture theatre and a Yiddish vaudeville house but for over 50 years it had been shuttered serving as a hardware warehouse."
..maybe Mr.Evanier got the name wrong, this info seems to imply that it was a Yiddish theater (Name?) THEN the Hippodrome movie theater..PS neither I nor Mr. Evanier imply that Darin attended any of these venues…just that they were nearby his residence…Jim P

Jim P

bamtino on November 27, 2004 at 3:12 pm

Jim’s comment regarding Bobby Darin incorrectly identifies this theatre as the Yiddish National. By the time Darin was born in 1936, this facility had already been known as the Sunshine for nearly 20 years.
The Yiddish National was located at 11 East Houston Street. There was another, 1500-seat National, also known as the National Winter Garden, located at 111-117 East Houston. (This was also the site of the 299-seat Rooftop Theatre.) These theatres were used for live performances.

mhvbear on November 26, 2004 at 7:54 pm

‘Beyond the Sea" is scheduled to open at the Angelika Film Center on December 17th.