Moviemax Cinemas

9180 W. Golf Road,
Niles, IL 60714

Unfavorite 3 people favorited this theater

Showing 51 - 75 of 77 comments

CinemarkFan on February 9, 2006 at 3:45 am

There was a time in August of 1986 when Plitt had it. The theatre directory had it saying, Plitt/Essaness Theatres. Now that you said CO renovated Golf Glen a little, did CO ever do the same for Chestnut Station? My brother only went there once to see Predator. He said something about that place having gray carpets with black stripes on it, and the theatres themselves having the CO decor, the zig-zag stuff on the auditorium walls like at Burnham Plaza, or Lincoln Village 1-6. Can anyone elaborate on this?

Regarding Glen, I think it might be divided into retail. And, me and my dad plan to check out the new Showplace at Golf Mill when it opens. Let’s hope they play homage to the old 4 plex somehow.

Broan on February 8, 2006 at 11:44 pm

I’m quite sure it will never return. They took the unusual step of removing the signage from the front of the building. And with Kerasotes' new multiplex set to go in at Golf Mill, nobody would want to compete. It’s a little sad, the place had that 80s timewarp character, so few of these early multis are left. The Golf Glen opened Friday, June 8, 1984 with The Natural, Moscow on the Hudson, Beat Street and the other three screens opening shortly thereafter with Pope of Greenwich Village, Karate Kid, Conan the Barbarian, and Bachelor Party. It was touted as featuring Dolby Stereo, Plush Seating, and Acres of Parking. Tickets were 2.25 for matinees. Also, I don’t think that Plitt ever operated this – both Essaness and Plitt were absorbed by CO, not each other. CO also renovated the theater somewhat in 1987-1988.

CinemarkFan on February 6, 2006 at 8:23 pm

I’m putting the finshing touches on it now. It’s a part of my school project. After Essaness, I’ll do M&R, General Cinema, Plitt, Cineplex Odeon etc… It’s about the difference between moviegoing now and moviegoing before I was born. I’m trying to start a theatre corp someday and I’d like to pay tribute to them somehow.

Paul Fortini
Paul Fortini on February 6, 2006 at 3:59 pm

Cinemark Fan,

It’s hard to say. I can’t say whether or not the strip mall this theatre is in is within the Niles City Limits, or if it’s in the unincorporated area of Cook County. There are a lot of ramshackle apartments in that area (and some nice condos too). The strip mall itself is blah. As the Golf Glen theatre was once a grocery store, it would be relatively easy to convert it back to retail use. One thing’s for sure—English is definitely not the first language spoken in this area.

By the way, did you ever do your Essaness Theatres project? If so, how did it go.

CinemarkFan on February 6, 2006 at 3:33 pm

I wonder if it’s headed for the wrecking ball?

Paul Fortini
Paul Fortini on January 16, 2006 at 2:48 pm

I meant to say “for the first time in a long time.”

Paul Fortini
Paul Fortini on January 16, 2006 at 2:44 pm

I was here for the first time recently (on a Saturday afternoon) to see KING KONG. I hadn’t been here in a long time and it reminded me of the Burnham Plaza Theatre—another 1980s theatre, once owned by Village (and many others). While basically clean, it looked a little down at the heels and like the Burnham, there are still Cineplex-Odeon signs.

It was like having a private screening as we were the only ones in the auditorium. It seems to me that Village Theatres tries to make an earnest go with the older theatres they’ve purchased/leased. But Village also seems to lack capital and they should advertise their theatres in the papers. They have, however, recently re-started their website, so that’s a positive sign.

If Keresotas does indeed build a new cinema at Golf Mill, then this places days are certainly numbered.

Paul Fortini
Paul Fortini on December 12, 2005 at 1:32 pm

Cinemark Fan:

Some of the theatres that Essaness opened up immediately prior to their take-over by Plitt (or was it Cineplex-Odeon) include

1) Chestnut Station
2) Forest Park
3) Foxfield
4) Golf Glen
5) Plaza
6) St. Charles

These opened up 1982-1985.

CinemarkFan on December 9, 2005 at 2:20 am

Thank you guys for your help. I’m gonna get right on it this weekend.

Broan on December 9, 2005 at 1:26 am

If you have a Chicago Public Library card, you have access to the archives of the Chicago Tribune from 1853-1985 online. You can use the search function to find any old ads or articles on Essaness theatres. Particularly useful are the showtime listings. Often renderings were published when theaters were announced. If you don’t have a CPL card, some suburban libraries also have access although it may be harder to find out about.

Paul Fortini
Paul Fortini on December 9, 2005 at 1:17 am

Cinemark Fan,

I spoke with a family member who is a retired librarian. In order to get old photos of Essaness Theatres, you should go do the following:

1) Check the list of Essaness Theatres on Cinema Treasures to see where the theatres are/were located.

2) Then go to the historical societies and libraries in the cities that the theatres were listed in. You should go in person and not use the web for these as the people at those places should be able to help you and recommend additional resources.

3) The Sulzer branch of the Chicago Public Library. located at Lincoln Avenue and Montrose, should be able to help you with the Davis Theatre. They maintain an extensive collection of resources on that neighborhood.

4) For the Lake Theatre, contact the Oak Park Public Library and the Oak Park Historical Society.

5) For the theatres that are still extant, (i.e. showing movies or live theatre or concert halls), contact the owners and see if you can take photos inside.

I hope this helps.

CinemarkFan on December 8, 2005 at 9:18 pm

Thanks guys. Oh Brian, I’d like to see that artist rendering of the Lincoln Village. And Paul, I’ve never been to the Lake, but I plan on going there soon.

Paul Fortini
Paul Fortini on December 8, 2005 at 9:01 pm

Cinemark Fan,

I believe that the Lake was also an Essaness. There are abundant photos of that place around the ‘net and in books. You can also get current photos of it yourself.

Broan on December 8, 2005 at 8:38 pm

I have an artists rendering of the Lincoln Village, but as I said, it wasn’t opened as an essaness.

Paul Fortini
Paul Fortini on December 8, 2005 at 6:36 pm

Cinemark Fan,

Photos of some of the theatres you mentioned above can be seen at The Davis is still in business, so (assuming you’re from the Chicagoland Area), you can get photos yourself. If you want the Plaza that was across the street from Lincoln Village, that building still stands, although it had been taken over by a K-mart (which I understand is now closed).

Essaness owned WSNS-TV, channel 44 in Chicago.

CinemarkFan on December 8, 2005 at 5:36 pm

Uhh, you lost me on that one. I forgot Essaness owned a TV station.

Speaking of Essaness, does anyone know where I can find photos of their theatres? I’m doing a school article on theatres and this could be useful. I’m also trying to obtain photos of Chestnut Station, Diana, Lincoln Village 7-9, The Plaza etc… The photos would go in my article. Thanks to anyone in advance.

Paul Fortini
Paul Fortini on December 8, 2005 at 4:31 pm

This theatre was one of a handful opened by Essaness immediately prior to that chain’s being taken over by Plitt/Cineplex Odeon. Some of the others included Forest Park Mall, the Plaza, the Foxfield, and I believe the Chicago Ridge. This is similar to General Cinemas having theatres built immediately prior to takeover by AMC.

Trivia question: Can anyone name the Chicago TV station which was owned by Essaness?

TRAINPHOTOS on July 25, 2005 at 5:04 pm

It is interesting that of all the theatres that were once in the Morton Grove/Niles area, only this one remains.

CinemarkFan on March 28, 2005 at 5:58 pm

Does anybody know what month this place opened in 1984?

Broan on March 28, 2005 at 4:44 pm

I wouldn’t say so. It’s a lot better than i’d expect for the price. It’s quiet, the prints are usually in good shape, popcorn is fresh. Not the cleanest place ever, but i’ve seen worse. Plus hardly anyone is ever there, so you don’t have to put up with a lot of obnoxious people. And with only one or two people working there, it would be quite easy to sneak in were one so inclined. It’s also a great time capsule of 80s cinema.

Field1 on March 28, 2005 at 3:58 pm

What a dump! Famous line applies to this theatre.

billymac72 on September 1, 2004 at 5:24 pm

To think I took dates there in the late 80s & early 90s!!!!!!!!

billymac72 on September 1, 2004 at 5:23 pm

I used to go there all the time with my friends and we never had a problem with the quality of the place. As a preteen and early teenager, it was a good place to scope out girls. I never cared for it much, however, as I preferred the larger theaters at Old Orchard & nearby Golf Mill (both now gone as well. Why did this one last?). By the time the mid-90s rolled around, it looked hopelessly dated. Last time I was there was for “A Very Brady Sequel.” (‘96?) I thought I’d timewarped back to my 80s gradeschool/high school days. The place hadn’t changed a bit, and as someone pointed out, looked pretty ramshackle.