AMC Loews Uptown 1

3426 Connecticut Avenue NW,
Washington, DC 20008

Unfavorite 54 people favorited this theater

Showing 351 - 375 of 487 comments

rcdt55b
rcdt55b on January 2, 2007 at 4:39 am

Unfortunately, They will not get it fixed. The problem is film handling. The so called projectionists that they have now do not know how to handle film. Once they got rid of the union, the presentation went downhill. It will continue to suffer until the place closes.

JodarMovieFan
JodarMovieFan on January 2, 2007 at 3:25 am

This past Saturday, 12/30, we caught the 7:20pm show of Dreamgirls. I timed my arrival to park my car in a space, in front of the theater, just as patrons were leaving :) Given the success it has had in limited runs, I had expected a greater turn out at the Uptown. There was a line that stretched the block, but was not enough to fill the house. The film was warmly received but not lively and somewhat restrained given some of the production numbers and standout performance by Jennifer Hudson. Probably the make up of the patrons had something to do with it. A good decision by the manager to tear stubs while we were in standing line to get in made theater entry and seating much faster and efficient.

The presentation, itself, was good up to a point. The curtain was opened wide enough at the beginning to facilitate the preshow ad slides. Then it was closed and opened wide before the movie started, which was an unexpected surprise! The sound was good with decent surrounds. Midway through the movie, there was that annoying black line that ran down the middle of the screen, which I recall seeing when I saw the last Star Wars movie there. On a screen as tall and wide as the Uptown, such a prominent black streak is especially annoying and irritating. If they had had digital projection here as they did at NYC’s Ziegfeld, I’m sure the presentation would have been far better. But I’m curious as to how, or even if DP projects on the curved screen at the Arclight in Hollywood, as it would need to here to fill the screen.

Overall, my experience for this show was better than the last several times. I am perplexed as to why there was that seemingly same black streak during the movie. Is it part of the projection system maybe? If so, they need to get it fixed. If its due to print handling, then they need to do a better job at taking care of their prints. If they can fix that problem, then catching event films here would make me a regular patron again.

JohnMessick
JohnMessick on November 23, 2006 at 5:26 am

Besides going there and seeing what the interior looks like. Does anyone have pictures of the interior or the exterior of the Uptown at night?

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on November 23, 2006 at 4:20 am

Well, it wasn’t a huge crowd because Flags of Our Fathers wasn’t popular nationwide. It was in its 4th week at the Uptown and had already been dropped from whatever multiplexes likely had run it, such as the Georgetown and downtown.

If people want to see the Uptown survive as a daily movie house, you need to go to the Uptown and see them there!

longislandmovies
longislandmovies on November 22, 2006 at 5:08 pm

HOW MANY PEOPLE WERE IN THE THEATER WHEN YOU WENT?

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on November 22, 2006 at 3:14 pm

You didn’t seem to realize the attraction is the Uptown’s giant screen, and the balcony. That’s why it has survived all these years. It won’t be twinned.

I started attending when it was the Circle Uptown. Circle, Cineplex Odeon, and Loews all respected the house. Loews closed the Avalon and the Cinema, and wasn’t keen on full time projectionists, but they had excellent staff. They were polishing the brass on the doors, and using the curtain at the screen.

Two Saturdays ago, I enjoyed Flags of the Fathers. The presentation was excellent- projection, sound, and the curtain was used before and after the movie. The staff however, did appear and act underwhelming. This was the first time in 21 years that I’ve been attending when there wasn’t a professional staff. AMC can do better.

MikeRadio
MikeRadio on November 22, 2006 at 2:24 pm

HowardBHaas…

I go to the Uptown OFTEN.. why do you ask??

I am looking forward to see Bobby again this weekend…. Being in media, I saw a press showing several weeks ago, and found it to be a VERY good movie… maybe not everyone’s cup of tea, but definitely entertaining if you want a true feel of the country during the time.. A true period piece with a real all star cast…

Despite what people have said here about projection and whatnot, the Uptown is still the best in DC and is a place to take people from out of town since single screen large houses are so rare.

I hope AMC holds on to it.

DKR
DKR on November 16, 2006 at 9:48 pm

This could be truly bad news. Although I’ve lived in Seattle all my life, I did have the opportunity to see a film at the Uptown back in 1985 (I don’t remember what I saw) and the theater (if not the film) provided me an unforgettable experience. Here’s hoping that a responsible exhibitor such as Landmark is able to take over operation should AMC pull out. The demographics of Northwest Washington would be a perfect fit for them.

Here in Seattle, AMC manages our much-beloved Cinerama Theater. Unlike the Uptown’s experience, they are doing a credible job here despite the fact that they got rid of the union a couple of years ago. The difference between the Uptown and the Cinerama as far as operations go probably lies with the owners of the two theaters.

I have no idea who actually owns the Uptown, but the Cinerama is owned by one of our resident billionaires, Paul Allen. It was he who saved it from being razed and sunk 15 Million of his own money to upgrade it to perhaps the finest theater in the country. I have a feeling that he and his associates keep a pretty tight rein on AMC and their antics. Case in point: The Cinerama looks as new today as when it first reopened about six years ago.

I had to laugh about the post questioning why there is a “1” after the listing for the Uptown. This happens at the Cinerama, too, and I’ve often wondered why. A little trivia: Before the Loews merger, the Cinerama was the only theater in AMC’s portfolio that was a single screener. And the only reason they got it was because of their buyout of General Cinema after that circuit tanked.

rlvjr
rlvjr on November 16, 2006 at 7:10 pm

One indication of AMC’s intentional running of the UPTOWN into the ground was the newsmaking World Premiere of Kevin Costner’s THE GUARDIAN. A big event, financed by Disney, the picture was shown on prime digital projectors —– ONE TIME ONLY. AMC re-installed the older substandard equipment the very next day.

Washingtonians love the UPTOWN and have supported it with huge box office for decades. The ONLY reason for its decline is AMC —– booking substandard movies, using substandard equipment. Employees used to be well dressed and speaking English as a native tongue. Now the staff is 100% foreign, and the manager hangs around with his shirt unbuttoned to the waist, showing off his oversized belly and chest hairs. STANLEY WARNER and later CIRCLE THEATRES, still later CINEPLEX ODEON prided themselves in maintaining the UPTWON as DC’s finest. AMC, in contrast, is working toward failure.

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on November 4, 2006 at 3:10 pm

Some exhibitors like AMC place a “1” after any single screen they operate. Especially with the merger, AMC is operating other singles like the Tower East (72nd Street) in NYC.

The magnficience of the Uptown is its huge screen and its balcony. It won’t be chopped up.

Whether AMC cares or not, the Uptown is still viable for movies, mainstream issues as well as classics. Whether under AMC operation, or another operator, let’s hope the Uptown survives so the people who want to see a movie on a huge screen in a movie house with a real presence can do so!

JodarMovieFan
JodarMovieFan on November 4, 2006 at 1:59 pm

I don’t understand why the listings for this theater, both in the newspaper and online, have it listed as the Uptown 1. Why bother putting in the 1? If you leave it off and look at the listings, you know it is just a single screen theater. Washingtonians know it is a single screen theater, so its of no use to anyone unless you’re looking at showtimes and are outside of the area. On the other hand, maybe there are plans to carve up the theater????

teecee
teecee on November 4, 2006 at 3:56 am

I just went to this theater on 10/30/06. What an experience. Glad I got to it before any rumored closing. The screen is immense.
What a shame if she closes.

JodarMovieFan
JodarMovieFan on November 2, 2006 at 11:09 am

Just read the posts above as to why people don’t travel to see movies at the Uptown, or downtown for that matter. The quality of projection and sound, as well as the programming choices just plain suck. They should be booking classic movies ala NYC’s The Ziegfeld and make use of that wonderful 80' screen to show 70mm movies during the slow period such as now. Or, offer them during the weekdays and the traditional Hollywood fare on the weekends, maybe even mix it up!

Even Wisconsin Ave had 70mm projection in #4 and 5. They could offer counter programming to the traditional fare. How many screens do you have to have to show Saw 3, or similar garbage anyway?

If you offer something that you can’t see in your neighborhood multiplex, or even at home in HD, and drum it up, people will come, which includes myself and, I’m sure, many others in this market.

Giles
Giles on November 2, 2006 at 6:07 am

according to Washington Post’s Marc Fisher:

“Posted at 07:39 AM ET, 10/31/2006
The Tragedy of the Dying Movie Houses
The roster of Washington area movie theaters shut down in the last few years is already depressing: the Biograph, Key, Cerberus, Fine Arts, Janus, Visions, Inner Circle, Outer Circle, Cinema, Jenifer, MacArthur, Paris, Studio, Tenley, and West End theaters closed, most of them to make way for CVS drug stores or to sit empty for year after year.

Now add two more to the list of the lost: In the suburbs, one of the last of the second-run theaters, the Premier Cinemas at Jumpers in Pasadena in Anne Arundel County, shut its doors on Sunday, a victim of changing moviegoing habits and an inability to afford the new digital screening technology. And in the District, the Loews Wisconsin Avenue in upper Northwest is next to go, a victim of the merger between the Loews and AMC chains. Insiders say it will shut its doors at the end of November.

And while there’s no official word, projectionists and other local movie industry workers are hearing more and more gloomy rumors about the future of the region’s grandest remaining movie house, the Uptown in Cleveland Park. If its days are numbered too, that calls for a popular uprising even more vociferous than that which eventually saved the Avalon in Chevy Chase.

The culprits for all those losses: Home video, the multiplexing of American movie houses, the insatiable spread of CVS, and the decline of the second-run and repertory formats.

The replacements: The AFI Silver, the Landmark art houses on E Street and in Bethesda, and the Loews complex in Georgetown.

Net loss: Huge, especially in Dupont Circle, the Wisconsin Avenue corridor in upper Northwest, and Georgetown.

Moviegoing at the 4000 Wisconsin was never a spectacular experience; the place is among the better of the 1980s theaters, but that’s not saying much. The walls are too thin, the sound bleeds from one theater to the next, several of the boxes are way too small—but there are decent-sized screens and even advanced sound and projection systems in the two largest theaters in the multiplex. But this is a case of Loews wanting to push business to its new Georgetown complex and of the landlord, Fannie Mae, never having been all that thrilled about having the unwashed public wandering through its corporate headquarters, according to workers at the theater.

Can and should the Uptown be saved?"

The thought of The Uptown closing is and would be truly terrible loss for the city. If and when AMC closes the theatre I hope there is enough public/private support to continue this theatre as Chevy Chase did with the Avalon.

bufffilmbuff
bufffilmbuff on October 23, 2006 at 3:38 am

Does anyone have any new news about AMC possibly closing the Uptown?

Bill Huelbig
Bill Huelbig on September 28, 2006 at 3:07 pm

One of the greatest movies ever made had its world premiere here at the Uptown – April 1968:

View link

carolgrau
carolgrau on September 12, 2006 at 4:46 am

Jesus Steve this is so depressing to read. I just got out of the hospital, and was catching up on things and I read this. I just had another heart attack and had triple bypass this time. You are right, I remember when we worked there it was fun to go to work and run perfect shows. Even though I messed with you allot I always said you were a great projectionist, and a damn good tech. Say hi to all for me, I miss you all allot.
Mungo
Norelco

My e-mail is

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on September 12, 2006 at 3:00 am

If the Uptown ceases to show movies, that would be tragic! For decades it has been the greatest theater to see movies on the East Coast!

SWATMAN
SWATMAN on September 11, 2006 at 11:56 am

I would like everyone to know that the 4000 Wisconsin theatre will close on November 30,2006. Someone who works for Donohoe show me a letter that AMC sent to Donohoe. Also I heard that AMC will close the Uptown soon, no date on when.

JodarMovieFan
JodarMovieFan on September 7, 2006 at 5:11 pm

Tonight the Uptown hosted the world premier of the Kevin Costner-Ashton Kutcher film “The Guardian.” The local news here reports that Disney spent $1 million on the premier event this evening. I suppose the Uptown still has some meaning to some even though AMC seems to be neglecting this theater.

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on September 5, 2006 at 4:24 pm

MikeRadio, have you ever been to the Uptown?

Regarding the Tivoli, you might want to read a bit about the effects of 1960’s racial rioting in American cities.

MikeRadio
MikeRadio on August 21, 2006 at 3:32 pm

rivjr

What do you mean by the Tivoli was doomed. Do you mean people stopped going to the theatres or they closed??

I think what he was saying about 300 stadium seats is that they were not stadium before the renovation.

Also I am sorry that II said it may be twinned. Someone bit my heard off. There are plenty of old houses that are chopped even now like the Pavillion in Brooklyn.

rlvjr
rlvjr on August 20, 2006 at 12:46 pm

For decades The UPTOWN functioned simply as a neighborhood theatre, one of Washington’s best, where admission prices were 10% higher than the norm. They catered to adults and would play serious adult movies on Friday and Saturday when most theaters played action films. In the 1950’s Warner Bros. Theaters got the idea to remodel the Uptown and play first run movies —– a big success —– often the special reserved seat attractions such as “2001, A Space Odyssy” as well as Cinerama (“How the West Was Won”).

Their greatest success was in 1977 with STAR WARS which opened here and played in excess of a year. After the initial 6 months they got a 70 MM print and kept it going for many months more.

This was the only Washington theatre which was spared ill-effect of the Martin Luther King Riots of 1966. Being in a “safe” neighborhood, it thrived, compared for example to the ultra-beautiful TIVOLI just a mile east which was doomed.

The UPTOWN is THE place to see a movie in Washington, DC. There are often World Premier events in the Nation’s Capital, and more than 90% are at the Uptown. Although current ownership seems indifferent, and has changed a few times in recent years I’m hopeful the Uptown will thrive.

Two corrections: The introduction says 300 stadium type seats were added in 1997. Nonsense! Those seats were there in the 1940’s and ever since. Also, the theatre does not “suffer” from lack of parking. Although parking is tough, people come anyway. The long lines you see curving around the block are people who came anyway.

rcdalek
rcdalek on August 11, 2006 at 7:21 pm

AMC will not twin the theater, they dont operate twins either. What they will do is operate it at what they think will generate the highest profit until the lease runs out. At that point they’ll either choose to leave or renew the lease. I do believe that this is the only single screener that they operate courtesy of the loews cineplex merger/buyout. The twinning of theaters is not the way things are done anymore. It’s brand new stadium complexes, and that’s what American Multi Cinema is building. They are just plain closing what they call non-strategic assets they’ve been doing that for the last 6 years.

MikeRadio
MikeRadio on August 6, 2006 at 6:00 am

I am surprised AMC hasn’t decided to close or twin this… They are not known for single screen theatres like this…