Comments from Cinedelphia

Showing 76 - 100 of 106 comments

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about UA Grant Plaza on Jan 17, 2010 at 1:23 pm

The two large auditoriums (approx 450 seats each) have decent size screens and very good digital sound and were as nice or better than anything else in the area when they first opened. The rest of the auditoriums feel crampted and are nothing to write home about. The worst two rooms are at each end of the complex, facing the parking lot…narrow, two sections of seats split down the center, screens with verticle masking, reminds you of something from the 80’s. Beware, the boxes of candy they sell are a complete rip-off (big boxes with a much smaller cellophane bag inside holding a paltry amount of candy)…it’s bait and switch as far as I’m concerned.

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about Roxy Theatre on May 25, 2008 at 7:38 pm

This may clear up the mystery. Look up the Stanley Theater in Atlantic City. There is a link to a picture. Looking at the picture and the other buildings surrounding the “Stanley” I’m almost certain that the Stanley became the “Roxy” we are discussing here. The “Stanley” is listed as having over 1900 seats, which seems about right from my memories of the “Roxy” in the 60’s.

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about AMC Neshaminy 24 Theatres on Oct 29, 2006 at 3:04 pm

With regards to the old Premier Twin at Neshaminy – I only saw films there after it had been twinned and it was nothing special. It sounds like it was a much better theatre pre-twinning.

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about AMC Neshaminy 24 Theatres on Oct 29, 2006 at 3:00 pm

The two largest rooms at the Neshaminy 24 (#1 & #24)are IMO the best
theatres in the Phila area, especially for event or big action films.
The screens are very large and have horizontal masking with (most of the time) very good projection and sound. A question for Steve Marcus:
How big are the screens in auditoriums 1 & 24 and do they have the capacity for 70mm projection ?

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about Leo Mall Twin on Sep 14, 2006 at 6:06 am

The Leo, Colonial, and Premiere were all single screen theaters originally and were all twinned by the time I moved to Philly in 1979. I am guessing they were all pretty nice theaters before being
twinned. The Leo wasn’t too bad as a twin, but I don’t recall movable
masking, etc. The Premiere was actually located inside the Neshaminy
Mall and closed to make way for the AMC Neshaminy 24. The Colonial
was also located inside a mall and I remember always having to sit
fairly close to the screens as they were relatively small. All these theaters, if my memory is correct, were twinned by dividing down the
center, creating relatively narrow auditoriums. Would love to hear
about how they were pre twinning.

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about Beach Theatre on Jul 3, 2006 at 6:31 pm

The Beach was operated by Charles Tannenbaum who also had the Charles
and the Tilton Theater (in Northfield). The Beach was a great theater
with a good sized balcony. I probably saw more movies at the Beach than any other theater. During the 60’s and 70’s the Beach mainly booked films from United Artists and Columbia. I recall the screen being pretty large and flat but do not recall details such as movable masking, curtains, 70mm capacity, etc.

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about Towne Cinema on Jul 3, 2006 at 6:20 pm

The “Town Cinema” was originally “The Astor”. It was renamed “The Town Cinema” after it was taken over by Frank Theaters in the 70’s. I recall the Franks ruined the marquee by covering it with what appeared to be cardboard with name “Town Cinema” on it. I lived in the neighborhood where the Astor was located until I was 12 but never attended the theater so I have no idea what the inside of the theater was like. My parents wouldn’t let me go there because it attracted “a rough crowd”. Ironically my grandparents used to go there. The Astor was considered a neighborhood theater and generally played 2nd run and double bills of B movies.It was located one block below the Capital Burlesque on the north side of Atlantic Ave, in what was known as the “uptown” area of AC.

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about Virginia Theatre on Jun 16, 2006 at 5:02 am

I recall the Strand Theater, which was located between the Virginia
and the Apollo, remaining open through the winter in its' last year of operation as a second run house. I saw an odd double feature of
“The Last Detail” and “Lightening Swords of Death” there during what I am sure was not the summer season. I believe the Strand may have been the last of the boardwalk houses to close in AC. The Apollo may have lasted a little longer as a burlesque/porn house. Man I miss those AC theaters. Grew up in AC during the 60’s and 70’s and attended those theaters on a regular basis. AC was a small town with
nine large theaters (plus two on Steel Pier) five of which would qualify as palaces. They were not always the most well maintained places, but they all had “charactor”.

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about Boyd Theatre on Apr 12, 2006 at 4:59 am

Regarding the size of the screen at the Boyd after restoration-
As long as the new screen fills the arch, it will be at minimum, more than adequite; with state of the art sound and projection it has the potential to be breathtaking. As far as I can see based upon the many knowledgable posts on this site, the screen in front of the arch was installed for Cinerama. A screen that size, unless being used for large format projection (Cinerama, 70mm, etc)would have to be masked down for other formats (including 35mm scope) or the projection might appear grainy blown up to that extreme size and ratio. I have seen 70mm blow-ups presented at the Boyd on the flat
screen (Indiana Jones and The Temple of Doom, Empire Strike Back)and the screen size was fine, however the projection and sound were not
always up to high standards. I hope the restored Boyd can bring back those high standards of presentation we saw in days gone by.

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia on Feb 11, 2006 at 3:29 pm

I am looking at the photo on the link to the Stanley Theatre and although it is not clear, I am wondering (based upon its' proximity
to the Apollo Theatre in the photo if the Stanley eventually became the Roxy? If anyone knows please comment.

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about Charles Theatre on Dec 15, 2005 at 9:08 am

Mikeoaklandpark
Thanks for the info. I know I saw alot of movies at the Charles that were filmed in scope (Cromwell, The Getaway, Bridge At Remagen, etc)
but it was a long time ago and my memory is a bit hazy regarding
presentation details and at that age I really didn’t know much about
scope, masking, etc. I’m glad to hear The Charles had proper presentation as the theatre was a class act for most of it’s life.
Also, Charles Tannenbaum, the owner of the Charles, also owned or
co-owned the Beach and Tilton theatres.

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about Roxy Theatre on Sep 3, 2005 at 4:44 pm

I was pretty young when I went to theatres such as the Roxy, and my technical knowledge of presentation was slim at best. I really did not truly appreciate these palaces until they were all gone. I really regret not photographing these treasures for posterity. I was recently in one of the two big auditoriums at Neshaminy 24 with my 13
year old son and he was pretty awed when I explained to him that most
of the theatres I attended at his age or younger had twice the number of seats (600) that the two big rooms at the 24 have. By the
way, if you live in the area, auditoriums 2 and 24 at Neshaminy are probably the best places to see an “event” type film. Really large screens, good sound, 600 seats and not too many projection screw-ups even though it does appear that the boothes are “manned” by teenagers.

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about Roxy Theatre on Aug 31, 2005 at 4:51 pm

Ken, I may be wrong, but you probably saw Jungle Book and Charlie The
Lonesome Cougar at the Center Theatre on Atlantic Avenue (that’s where I saw them). Oliver to my recollection never played at the Roxy, but did play at the Shore Theatre, also on Atlantic Avenue.

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about Capitol Theatre on Aug 31, 2005 at 4:39 pm

I only remember this as a Burlesque theater in the 60’s and 70’s.
In the summer they had live Burlesque (we are talking baggy pants comics and strippers like Blaze Starr, Busty Russell, etc). In the fall through spring they showed the grind house porn of that era. The theatre was owned and operated by Al Baker, who also operated the Troc Burlesque in Philadelphia. The only time I recall a regular movie playing there was in 1965, when Thunderball moved over from the Beach Theatre, which was very unusual.

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about Apollo Theatre on Aug 31, 2005 at 4:29 pm

I am almost positive The Dirty Dozen was 1.85
There may have been some 70mm blow-ups in big markets like NYC and LA
The Dirty Dozen was directed by Robert Aldrich and I recall reading somewhere that he preferred 1.85 and never shot in scope. Flight of the Phoenix (the original), Longest Yard (the original)and Baby Jane were all 1.85 to 1 . Vera Cruz was 2.0 to 1, but was in the short lived “Superscope” format which was a process done in post production to films shot Academy Flat (1.33 to 1) as a cheap alternative to Cinemascope.

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about Apollo Theatre on Aug 12, 2005 at 4:19 am

I saw the Dirty Dozen, The Odd Couple, Operation Grandslam, and Shaft, among others that I’ve forgotten when I was a kid growing up in AC. 2001 also played there, but I don’t recall if it was in 70mm (don’t recall if the theatre had 70mm capacity). It was a beautiful theatre with images of the Roman gods on the walls of the auditorium. I remember seeing Shaft there after the fire (the Franks
operated the Apollo by then) and part of the screen was burned and nothing had been done to repair or conceal it. Fortunately Shaft was 1.85 to 1 and basically what was left of the screen fit that ratio.
It was very bizarre to say the least(the first flame masked screen!!).

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about Benner Theatre on May 31, 2005 at 8:51 am

I saw “The Empire Strikes Back” on a second run at this theatre. It was one of the better old Oxford Circle neighborhood theatres, second only to the Orleans (before it was destroyed by twinning). A wide theatre with a real large wall to wall Cinemascope screen but no Dolby Surround or stereo capacity.

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about Roxy Theatre on May 31, 2005 at 8:41 am

I think the Hollywood had a balcony and the best marquee and front(it looked amazing all lit up). The Beach definately had a balcony, but the Center did not. The Hollywood was big and beautiful also, but from a strictly movie viewing standpoint, the Roxy ruled (bigger
screen, better sight lines, etc.).

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about Point 4 Theatre on May 30, 2005 at 6:51 pm

Small theatres, small screens, no masking, poor projected image quality …. this poor excuse for a movie theatre sent more people out to buy a Sony Betamax than Sony’s own advertising campain.

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about Gateway Playhouse on May 12, 2005 at 8:58 am

The Point 4 was built and operated by Frank Theaters and was a converted bowling alley. The theater was very cheap and austere looking. I always got the impression that they put as little money as absolutely possible into the conversion into a theater. It wasn’t the worst place to see a movie, but it was pretty lame even compared to most contemporary multiplexes. I recall that Frank Theaters had some problems with local business licensing ordinances and fees because they were operating an ice cream parlor on the premises of the theater. The Gateway would be missed, the Point 4 won’t.

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about Gateway Playhouse on May 11, 2005 at 5:53 pm

I saw “Kelly’s Heroes” at the Gateway when it was a movie theatre.
What I remember was that it was a small(for that time)maybe 300 plus
seat theatre. The theatre was pretty plain, but very clean and well maintained. The most striking feature I recall was the screen, which was very large relative to the size of the theatre. It was slightly
curved with a full 2:35 to 1 scope ratio and stretched almost wall to wall. I don’t recall curtains or movable masking, but it was a long time ago. The people who worked at the theatre were also very nice and friendly. It would be great if it could be restored as a movie theatre again, it would make a great repertory/art house

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about Boyd Theatre on Apr 18, 2005 at 7:23 pm

I’m really thrilled that the Boyd is going to be saved and restored.
I also understand that it would not be able to survive only showing film. One of the things that the Boyd has going for it as a multi purpose venue is the width of the auditorium and proscenium. I would think that a very large movie screen would still be able to be maintained for screenings and would do justice to scope and 70mm films. The screen at the Prince (formally Midtown) is small for that size theater as it must be able to be pulled up for live events. I am
guessing that at least a 60 foot wide screen would be able to fit
within the arch and still be able to be pulled up for live shows. It may not be a 76 foot wide, deeply curved, Cinerama screen, but with good projection and sound it potentially could be far and away the best movie experience in the area. A note about IMAX as a venue for seeing mainstream films: it stinks. The scope and 1:85 to 1 movies are cropped to be shown at 1:33 to 1 and also the IMAX versions are many times edited and shortened. I’d love to know more about the plans to restore the Boyd’s capacity to show film. If anyone knows, please feel free to comment.

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about Tilton Square Theatre on Mar 11, 2005 at 7:13 am

It’s interesting to see that “Thunderball” was the premier attraction
at the Tilton when it opened in 1965. I was living in Atlantic City
at the time and saw “Thunderball” at the Beach Theatre which was also owned by Charles Tannenbaum (and for many first run “A” pictures
would share bookings with the Tilton). It’s funny, back in the mid 60’s when most of the big palaces in Atlantic City were still open,
the Tilton with its' huge screen, etc., did not quite stand out as much (I don’t think I ever saw a movie on anything less than a 50 foot screen until the original Town Twin opened at the Shore Mall in the 70’s)so I consider myself fortunate. I am glad to hear from Mr.Appenzeller that the Town 16 has been well renovated and if what he says is true, I look forward to seeing films again there this summer.

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about Tilton Square Theatre on Mar 11, 2005 at 7:13 am

It’s interesting to see that “Thunderball” was the premier attraction
at the Tilton when it opened in 1965. I was living in Atlantic City
at the time and saw “Thunderball” at the Beach Theatre which was also owned by Charles Tannenbaum (and for many first run “A” pictures
would share bookings with the Tilton). It’s funny, back in the mid 60’s when most of the big palaces in Atlantic City were still open,
the Tilton with its' huge screen, etc., did not quite stand out as much (I don’t think I ever saw a movie on anything less than a 50 foot screen until the original Town Twin opened at the Shore Mall in the 70’s)so I consider myself fortunate. I am glad to hear from Mr.Appenzeller that the Town 16 has been well renovated and if what he says is true, I look forward to seeing films again there this summer.

Cinedelphia
Cinedelphia commented about Tilton Square Theatre on Mar 9, 2005 at 8:47 am

The original theatre, before it was twinned, was a nice place to see a movie. The screen was very large (I don’t recall if it had movable
masking or not)and a good 60 feet in width. I also remember there being “surround” type speakers mounted on the walls of the auditorium
which leads me to believe that there was multi-track stereo and 70mm
capability (if anyone can confirm this, please feel free to comment).
When the Tilton was twinned, it was a typical “dark ages of twinning"
wall down the middle job, basically destroying a nice example of a
large, modern for its time, suburban movie house. The present Tilton
9 is a mixed bag. The original auditorium remains in its' narrow twinned state with the addition of digital sound (shrill and crackly w/ less than steller projection the last time I was there)the newer
stadium auditoriums are decent with good sound, projection, and acceptable size screens for their moderate size; as far as the remaining small auditoriums go, other than barely acceptable digital sound, the less said the better. I find it amazing that this place continually is awarded best theatre in the area by the AC Press. The Regal Hamilton Stadium 14 is pretty much a nice modern megaplex with
excellent sound, big screens in all the audtoriums, etc. Also, if anyone has been to the Town 16 at the Shore Mall since it was refurbished after a fire, I’d love to know if the place has gotten any better (it had become a real dump while run by Hoyt’s).
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