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The Ridgewood theatre is in the section of the neighborhhod that is Brooklyn. I grew up going to this theatre as my grandmother lived in Glendale. I remember the Sound of Music played forever and I saw alot of great films there. In the 60’s they used to play childrens matinees on the weekend mornings and the theatre was well maintained even by United Artists the last operators. I think the last film to play there under the UA banner was the Peter Weiler film “The Last Wave”. I was there for the previous engagement “The Wiz” which was double billed in its last week with “Seargent Peppers Lonely Hearts Club band”. The current owners also opearate the Jackson and The Plaza in Corona and previously had The Colony in Jackson Heights, The Community and The Queens in Queens Village and The Deluxe in Woddside. The theatre was triplexed in the early eighties by clsoing off the balcony and making two theatres downstairs. You could not cross over to the other auditorium because it had a wall that divided the lobby and each side had its own bathrooms and candy stand. Around 1990 the balconies were divided into three bringing the amount of screens to five. There is so much wasted space where the huge stage was that could accomidate more cinemas. I last was in the theatre for the first time in many many years for the opening night of “Spider Man” because a friend knew someone there and we were able to get tickets. The theatre is clean but really needs an overhaul. It still has the seats and bathrooms from the UA days. There is a little bit of the old glamour in the first lobby where the original ceiling and showcases remain and in the downstairs theatres you can see the stained glass fixtures that are still intact.
Did this open in 1969 as a single or a 5-plex?
I remember when Cineplex Odeon took over the Fairfax it had either been closed or run into the ground as a $1 house. I think they triplexed it and the last time I was in LA it was a first run theatre. When did it go discount?
It’s hard to believe a twenty screen theatre closed after a year. Someone should try a discount policy here.
The saddest thing of all to me was UA’s moronic closing of Cinema 150 in Syosset. It put the Zeigfeld to shame with a huge dimension 150 screen. It was totally renovated in the early 90’s with all new seats, drapes, carpet, screen and lighting. They never advertised the theatre for what it was. I introduced friends in Manhattan to the place and they used to travel on the LIRR after that to see films there.
A friend in LA saw all of the Cinerama revivials at The Dome some were 3 projector also. New York always seems like a step child for film. When is the last time anyone played 70mm? Although they are not as frequent anymore LA has had a few recent 70mm engagements.
I’m sure there was not. I remember when I was a kid it was a big family outing when we all went to the Rivoli to see “The Sound of Music” with my parents and both grandmothers. How special those roadshows were. The only real place that compares at all is Radio City Music Hall and I cant remember the last time they had a movie or premiere there. I dont know why I missed “This is Cinerama” when the Ziegfeld first opened, I have always wanted to see this and doubt they will ever go to the trouble to run it again.
I drive by everyday and it looks worse then ever. Having attended this theatre my whole life it’s sad to see it end like this. When Loews booked it with the right upscale product the place was always busy. I know its almost impossible to run a single screen theatre anymore but you would think in an upscale are like Forest Hills concerts or another use could be found. SAVE THE TRYLON
I agree 100% not one of the real Broadway palaces survived even though many were open into the eighties or ninties. When you think of what was there and destroyed, The Rivoli, The Warner Cinerama, The Capitol, Loews State, The Criterion, The Paramount and to a lesser degree the Strand and DeMille. I am sure I am forgetting some but unlike other cities that have restored at least one palace, NY tears them down. Remember a few years ago when they had the idea to build above Radio City and keep the theate intact? Why could that idea not have been used for The Rivoli or State?
The Williamsburg was down the street from the Commodore. At one time they had the name Commodore 3 on the top line of the marquee and used to move over films from the Commodore Twin which had the same owners.
I drove by today and it still is there with the same info on the marquee.
The Midway prospers and no area is worse to park in then Forest Hills.
Most of it’s life The Wagner showed German films, since Ridgewood had a huge German population at that time. It is now a community performing arts theatre.
I remember when this was a single screen Walter Reade theatre.
UA had renovated this theatre a few years before closing it. What a shame it was a better place to see a film then any theatre in Manhattan. I miss it every time I look to see an epic. That HUGE screen and the drapes opening was what movie going was all about.
I attended this theatre all my life and it makes me sick to see it sitting empty and rotting. Before Loews had it it was run by Interboro Theatres.
The Marquee has been restored to its movie days glory. It’s worth a drive by to see it.
The last fillm to play there was “The Promise”, starring Kathleen Quinlan.
The owner of this theatre has had it since the early 60’s. It used to play second run double bills. In the late eightys he attempted to play porno by day and second run at night but never cleaned up the place or gave it a chance.
When Loews got rid of the Parsons it was taken over by the owner of The Utopia & Center and was quaded.
It also went through a very short time as i Bollywood theatre at the very end.
I love going to The Manhasset and have never found it to be dirty. I have been seeing alot of improvements made since Clearview took over.
This theatre was opened in the early 60’s and was a D-150 theatre that played films like Sound of Music after the exclusive Manhattan runs.
This was another UA blunder closing this theatre. The Whitestone Multi draws a totally different audience and this theatre could have survived showing upscale fare.
I loved this theatre I have lived a few blocks away from it all my life and was so saddened when they closed it. It always played better films like Woody Allens pics, La Cage Aux Folles ran six months here. It also opened Return of the Jedi when it was still single screen. Its all in the past now just like the concerts a few blocks away at The Forest Hills Tennis Stadium.