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Personal bias ;)
They should have a 70mm retrospective. I’m not a fan of silent films. I appreciate their history and place in cinema, but thats it. I remember seeing Metropolis on TV with modern music years ago. For its time, it was quite imaginative.
Justin, let’s just say that you’d forget your favorite AMC Rockaway and its stadium seating, non-curtain rising/falling cookie cutter screen plex. Maybe you’d be daily blogging about the Ziegfeld here as well. :D
On my infrequent visits, I do have to say that its hit or miss presentation wise. Sometimes the curtain is used, sometimes not. Sometimes the sound levels and overall experience is stupendous and then not.
Interesting proposals. I am glad they are not shrinking or otherwise carving up the main auditorium. I wish/had hoped they could build a little balcony in theater 2. Its about the same size, if probably larger, than the old MacArthur theater in DC had when it had twins during its ‘83 remodel.
I’ve never regularly frequented a theater that served alcohol. I just hope the booze (as I’m a non-drinker) doesn’t lead to loud and obnoxious patrons during the shows. Its one thing to have college aged patrons when the big blockbusters are booked to full house..just imagine what it would be like if these kids are boozing.
How about an espresso/high end pastry/bakery bar? If you’re going to serve alcohol, how about some decent coffee and/or baked goods aside from the usual popcorn, candy and soda fare?
As long as they don’t touch the main auditorium, I’m fine. Nicer and larger restrooms. Fine. It was my impression that the Cusacks had plans to maintain the big screen but shrink the main auditorium. Hopefully, I am wrong. As far as the holiday releases, I do not know what is coming that I want to see on the Senator’s larger screen aside from Harry Potter.
Great job as always! This movie came out way before I was born, but I have been to the Warner Theatre for live shows and the inside is quite ‘small’ compared to say, DC’s Uptown.
Baltimore’s Town Theater is relatively nearby but its boarded up. I am curious to know if their screen and theater was more similar to our Uptown or more like the Warner, which, come to think of it, is like the Hippodrome in Balto.
My prayers and sympathy to the family. You’ll be missed. I wonder if they’ll have movie theaters in heaven…if they do, they’ll need a darn good projectionist like you, Norelco. If St Peter tries to give you a harp as you pass the pearly gates, ask for a darn good movie projector, instead. :D
I saw Star Wars: Episode One The Phantom Menace here way back in ‘99. Like similar Hoyt multiplexes of this site, they had 2 BIG theaters and several smaller ones. The BIGGER auditoriums..some (I’m guessing 400-500 seat capacity with the bigger 50-60 ft screens) had Dolby EX.
When my friend passed away, I seldom, if ever went back to this place. The proliferation of gang-type crowds were a turn off.
I just read today that the place is for sale, along with its Hunt Valley counterpart. This facility supposedly is 75,000 sq. ft.
Gotta love living near DC and having the Smithsonian and all its historical artifacts available to be seen in the various museums for FREE. 70mm would be nice, maybe they could upgrade in the future?
How about showing 70mm movies, or better yet, a 70mm festival in the near future..like before the end of the year? :)
Its got to be before 1999. I thought there was a listing for this venue. I’ve been here before probably the first time being around 2001 for the showing of Moulin Rouge. The auditoriums are all about the same size, with stadium seating. Nothing is remarkable about them that I can recall. At least one auditorium is 3D capable and at least two for DP.
I think Summer BO got off to a wrong start by the greed of certain production companies with the release of Shrek and a few others in May. You can charge only so much no matter how enthused your audience is about your product. What did it go up to..$17 or so until it retreated back?
I was being flippant, of course, about the DVD sound level problem. You’d think as a viewer, more so the Manager of a Movie Theater, you would want to see/experience movies as optimally as you can, which means decent sound levels to create that immersive experience. You’d think AFI, of all places, would be more concerned to not show movies at conversational levels. If I managed the place, I’d make sure sound levels are up even if I have to create some of my own.. :D
I wrote back to the Manager I emailed before to see what response I get. I’ll post it when/if I receive it.
Last week, I happened to catch two movies that were part of the 80’s film retrospective. Specifically, the Richard Donner cut of Superman II and Star Trek III. A few months ago, I had written and requested if they could show at least one known 70mm print of ST3 in circulation and shown recently at the Laehmle Theater in LA. Initially, I received a response, from the webmaster, saying to look at the website again. DUH. Its not in 70mm. I replied and received another response stating that the 70mm print they could get was not as highly rated as the one shown this past week. Hmmm.
Superman II on the bigscreen was a welcome, if disappointing experience. The movie was advertised as being in Blue Ray. That may not be such a bad thing as the movie looked good in the Historic Auditorium. Unfortunately, the volume was played too low with barely discernible surrounds. I’d have to say the movie sounded better on my Sony system at home then it did here. Unfortunately, I do not have a 40 ft screen to myself to enjoy…
Star Trek III was also a disappointment. Its ironic that the movie played here over 26 years ago but not in 70mm. Apparently, they got a 35mm print that I’m reasonably sure was a mono print. There was no stereo sep/surround at all. As many times as I’ve seen this movie both in 70 and 35mm and in stereo at home, I know what parts are supposed to deliver when it comes to sound. Background chatter was not distinct, nor separate, or altogether non-existent during the bridge scenes and as the Enterprise enters and leaves Spacedock.
I had complained about the sound level being too low and the manager on duty and he said the film would be played loud. The reason for Superman II being so low in the sound department was that “it was a DVD.” I was about to say to him “so that means you can’t increase the sound playback on DVDs in your multi-million dollar theater?” The Manager had warned the 20 or so patrons in attendance that the film had scratches in some places and would be granting refunds prior. I did not notice anything that detracting to warrant a refund, other than the lack of SURROUND STEREO.
If the prior two lackluster presentations are indicative as to how they do retrospectives, then whats the point of having them? The awful presentations are more worthy of a Regal or AMC, not AFI.
Lastly, once again they ran out of my favorite pretzels. Is it my bad luck, or do they just don’t stock them anymore. Take them off the menu then. :P
Summer is almost over. Who needs AC? It can’t get that cold in theaters during the fall months. I’ve actually been inside the theater and you’d think with the proximity to the university, an ice cream/sandwich shop inside and arcade games, you’d have some hope.
Those “living room sized auditoriums” aren’t exactly living room sized. At least compared to the one my home has or most people I know of..its more likely steeply raked, stadium seating with wider and comfortable chairs of a standard sized multiplex auditorium.
I also saw Inception in the IMAX-lite theater. Unfortunately, I was up late the night before, so the AM showing I saw caused me to sleep during the middle of the movie. Its funny though that I thought I was actually “in” the movie going in and out of consciousness and felt I was in certain scenes and that I was actually talking to Leonardo diCaprio. :D I hope to see it again before it goes.
Piranha, Giles? PIRANHA???? In 3D, no less and paying $14.50 for XD???? I thought you were better than that :P :)
I want to see Avatar, again, too. Maybe tomorrow. My first experience was less than pleasurable given the fact that I had eaten some bad potluck food… The special edition should be worthy of the admission price.
I meant to say that there was an existing page for this venue already on Cinema Treasures because I had made an entry about my experience here but its nowhere to be found. :P This isn’t the first time. Not sure if its a server issue when they migrated to bigger one. No replies were ever received to my queries.
Sounds exciting. How about opening a plex like this in the Washington DC market. LA has enough first rate venues to see movies. We could use at least one or two. With youth predominately employed in movieplexes these days, I am curious how your superior customer service is going to work out given the fact most are apathetic to work, much less know the meaning of ‘good’ customer service. :P
Sounds exciting. How about opening a plex like this in the Washington DC market. LA has enough first rate venues to see movies. We could use at least one or two. With youth predominately employed in movieplexes these days, I am curious how your superior customer service is going to work out given the fact most are apathetic to work, much less the meaning of ‘good’ customer service. :P
Wasn’t this listed under National Amusement? I thought I blogged about my first (and probably last) encounter about their ‘reserved’ seat selection in the Director Halls and the mall-type fast food fare. Nothing exists under the city. I recall seeing the previous Shrek movie, not this summer’s one, the sound and picture were okay, not worth driving into Virginia though. :)
I forgot to mention that it was nice they had their free screening in Bethesda and not at the sister plex on E St, like they usually do. Parking is much easier if you drive. Attendance for the screening seemed to favor the older (50s and older) crowd with many seats to spare in Auditorium 6.
I had the privilege of seeing a sneak preview of the upcoming release (8/20) Mao’s Last Dancer, tonight. The movie is a biopic of the Chinese ballet dancer LiCunxin, who created an international incident after leaving his native China for the US in 1981. Performances are great all around, including its star and Bruce Greenwood as Li’s mentor/sponsor, Ben. You will appreciate the ballet backstory and leave the theater without a dry eye at the end.
As of today, should the theater’s current status be changed to ..closed? I am surprised no one has posted anything from the last movie showing. I had work conflicts and couldn’t make it.