Movie theaters are heart of downtown
HOLLISTER, CA — In this story from the Gilroy Dispatch, the writer looks back to childhood memories of going to the nearby State Theatre. He also discusses the importance of the ritual of going out to the movies.
There’s a ceremony involved with “going to the movies” that TV can’t duplicate. You buy your ticket at the little booth under the marquee overhang, bending a bit to place your money through the little window. After stepping into the lobby, the uniformed usher takes your pass and tears it to show you are among the elect allowed to pass into the cinema sanctuary. Buttery popcorn, Junior Mints, Jujubes and Raisinettes – the holy communion of movie-goers – are displayed behind glass. Coca-Cola pours forth from the sacred soda machine. After buying your sacrament snacks, you proceed into the holy of holies … the darkened movie theater.
In the State Theater in Hollister, a heavy black curtain hid the screen before the show. When the theater dimmed to darkness and the drapes parted, the projector revved up and cast its image-filled light in a dust-mote beam over the audience. That night when my dad introduced me to the magic of movies, I found myself transported to another world where the drama of a duck that laid golden eggs unfolded before my eyes.