Comments from Edward Havens

Showing 51 - 75 of 209 comments

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about Manhattan Village 6 closes on Jun 14, 2012 at 10:54 am

Over 20 years? Try over 30! I remember when I was a kid, I was so excited to have a new movie theatre within biking distance of my mom’s house. But the one and only movie I ever got to see there was the original Raiders of the Lost Ark in 1981, because my mom moved to Santa Cruz a few weeks later. I don’t remember much about the venue, but I was amazed it stayed open as long as it did, especially with the Arclight opening right down the street a couple years ago.

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about Celebrating the Original STAR WARS on its 35th Anniversary on May 25, 2012 at 9:10 am

Grauman’s Chinese. Not opening day, but opening week. Tuesday or Wednesday afternoon. Sat almost on the very end of the left side of the theatre, maybe seven rows from the screen. The greatest movie moment that nine year old boy had to date. Saw it at least fifteen more times that summer.

As chance would have it, one of my friends from school was one of the first families to have a VHS player, and somehow his dad had gotten ahold of a top-quality bootleg tape of Star Wars. He lived right across the street from school, so every day after school for an entire year, we’d rush over to his house and watch Star Wars. We easily watched it three hundred times.

Over the years, I’ve had copies of the original 1984 CBS/Fox VHS release, the 1993 Definitive Collection laserdisc and the 2006 Limited Edition DVD, and I will not be buying the Blu-Ray or any other future edition unless it includes a new hi-def scan of the original movie I saw at Grauman’s Chinese in 1977.

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about Tim League Discusses Texting Debate on CNN on May 6, 2012 at 3:51 pm

“I don’t know.”

That’s the most common answer I get from people I remove from my theatres for texting during the movie, when I ask them why they spent money on a movie and then kept doing something they could be doing for free somewhere else.

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about Century Plaza 16 on Apr 18, 2012 at 10:10 am

The Brenden Pittsburg 16 closed after 22 years this past Sunday. Maya Cinemas is supposed to be reopening the building by Memorial Day.

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about Digital Film switch could signal end of historic movie theaters on Feb 21, 2012 at 9:51 pm

There must be a sponsored fund that pays out to anyone who will write an article about how “The Sky Is Falling!” for theatres that have not yet converted to digital.

The writing was on the wall about digital cinema several years ago, and every theatre still open today that was open then has had the same amount of time to prepare for the inevitable.

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about Laemmle NoHo 7 on Jan 14, 2012 at 10:26 am

Chris has obviously never been to the Royal. :)

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about Del Mar Theatre on Jan 10, 2012 at 7:31 am

When I first started working at the Del Mar in 1986, the theatre’s GM at the time, Joe, gave me a ~80 page thesis paper done up by a UCSC student about the history of the Del Mar Theatre, for its 50th anniversary. I may still have it in storage somewhere, but considering some of my stuff may still be in storage in Los Angeles at my dad’s place, it might take a while to locate.

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about AMC Empire 25 on Jan 10, 2012 at 7:23 am

Except for the fact that, by the time I moved to New York City on 9/9/01 (two days before the original election date for the Mayoral race that would eventually elect Bloomberg), the Disneyfication of Times Square was pretty much concluded.

The Empire 25 as it’s stood for the past dozen years really isn’t much of a cinema treasure. It was an interesting experiment that didn’t work out as well as it could have, aesthetically. As a powerhouse grosser, it obviously has worked out extremely well, and in the end, that’s what a movie theatre is supposed to do. Make money.

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about Majestic Crest for sale on Dec 22, 2011 at 1:47 am

I don’t know if I would call 2.2 miles “practically around the corner,” Chris. But then, I never realized the Landmark is 1.5m from the Crest. I thought a mile was stretching it.

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about Majestic Crest for sale on Dec 20, 2011 at 8:50 am

So let me get this straight… this was purchased only a year or so ago for $4m, was a complete failure from the get-go, and now the new owners want to flip it for a half million dollar profit? In a dying market with many issues related to parking and expansion, and a massively successful multiplex that gets all the best bookings not a mile down the road?

Depending on the interest rate a potential buyer could get and the amount of the down payment, one would be spending roughly $22-25k per month just on the financing, forgetting any other cost related to the operation of a movie theatre. When was the last time the Crest was able to book any movie to cover just those costs, factoring in just how much of the box office is returned to the distributor?

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about Fight for 35mm on Dec 19, 2011 at 9:44 am

Save 1.33:1 silent movies on black and white nitrate film! Let’s not allow these infernal technological advances from the 20th Century destroy the art that Georges Méliès and D.W. Griffith and Buster Keaton lived for.

As for Jay… unless something has changed very recently, the Cultural Center known as New York City does not have a repertory house. Film Forum, Anthology Film Archives, Lincoln Center, BAM Cinematheque and The Museum of the Moving Image regularly show archival titles, but there is no theatre solely dedicated to revival cinema in The Big Apple.

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about iPic Westwood on Dec 19, 2011 at 1:33 am

The problems with motion picture exhibition in Westwood have nothing to do with parking, and anyone who tries to tell you otherwise has never done anything more than look at the surface of the issue.

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about TCL Chinese Theatre on Dec 13, 2011 at 11:41 pm

Someone needs to pay for that $2m upgrade, and it’s sure not going to be the owners.

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about Sittin' in the front row on Dec 8, 2011 at 9:43 pm

In a theatre with 140 or more seats: Center, 2/3 of the way back.
In a theatre with less than 140 seats: Center, very back row.

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about Culver Plaza Theatres on Dec 6, 2011 at 6:11 pm

Let’s just keep speculating every couple days until it finally closes. That’s always fun!

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about Regency Village Theatre on Nov 25, 2011 at 12:12 pm

Comparing movies theatres to amusement parks is like comparing apples to legumes. Both of the latter provide sustenance, but that’s about where the comparisons end.

An amusement park does not soly rely on product produced outside the environment on a daily basis in order to entertain its guests, nor does the amusement park need to hand over up to 90% of its revenue with the producer of said outside entertainment provider. The amusement park may entertain, but it entertains in a quite different way than a movie theatre, and that’s where the comparisons end.

Ask yourself this… why does the Landmark just one mile down the road often do 8-10x the business with the same movie as the Village? The Landmark does not offer season passes nor free wi-fi, and their ticket prices and snack bar items are more expensive than the Village. It’s because there is no one single factor that makes people change their habits.

We are cinephiles, and we care about the overall presentation. Most people don’t. They don’t care about the history of the place they are going to. They don’t care about what’s available at the snack bar. They don’t care if it’s a massive auditorium with a 60' screen and THX-approved sound and picture, or if it’s a thirty seat house with a 10' screen and sofas instead of seats. They don’t care if there is a wine bar. They don’t even really care if you have to pay for parking. All they want is a clean place to see a movie that has other things to do before or after the movie, in a convenient setting. Westwood isn’t all that convenient for most anymore, while the Westside Pavilion is. And that’s what makes all the difference in the world.

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about Limited patience for limited releases on Nov 16, 2011 at 10:57 am

In 1988, my friends and I drove from Santa Cruz to San Francisco (roughly 75mi) in order to attend the first showing of The Last Temptation of Christ at the Cineplex Northpoint Theatre. We arrived around 5am, and there was already a half dozen people in line ahead of us, and by 10am, there was easily a thousand people in line behind us and another two or three thousand protestors, counter-protestors and press people covering the sheer madness of it all. When we got in to the theatre, the first four rows of the auditorium was blocked off across the entire length of the theatre, and several armed guards posted between the front row and the screen, lest anyone follow through on their threat to slash the screen.

Great movie (still own the Criterion DVD), great theatre (shame it’s no longer an operational movie theatre) and a great experience I will remember for the rest of my life.

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about Crest Theatre on Oct 25, 2011 at 10:44 pm

Danny, the problems with parking for movies in Westwood have been like that for decades, at least since the mid-1980s, when I moved back to Los Angeles after graduating high school and started going to movies in Westwood.

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about iPic Westwood on Oct 25, 2011 at 10:40 pm

The AVCO won’t work for this concept, but taking the Festival and the spaces next door would make more sense. Not that a single screen dinner theatre is all that smart either.

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about Sash Mill Cinema on Oct 23, 2011 at 4:43 pm

Please do, Titus. I wish I still had all my Sash Mill calendars.

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about Galaxy Glendale Marketplace on Oct 13, 2011 at 6:49 am

Don’t worry Danny, you’ll see it again twice more… when you document the closing of the Westlake 8 and the Janss 9. :|

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about El Rey Theatre on Oct 13, 2011 at 6:47 am

Going back to the pictures from Roger Rabbit, that is not the real El Rey. In the second linked photo, one can clearly see the One Wilshire building in the background, which puts this location somewhere downtown.

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about Lumiere Theatre on Aug 22, 2011 at 9:11 am

Bagdad Cafe opened in 1987, for the record.

The one and only time I’ve ever been to the Lumiere was to see Sling Blade in late 1996 or early 1997. Don’t remember much about the theatre, other than it felt quaint and antiquated at the time.

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about Theater owners too obsessed with home viewing? on Jul 11, 2011 at 10:58 am

The biggest problem with the article is that it was written by someone who has no experience in exhibition, and has only tangental and anecdotal “facts” to form their worldview.

Edward Havens
Edward Havens commented about Movie 1 & 2 on Jun 19, 2011 at 1:09 am

The Movies was where you ended up if you wanted to see a movie that was so bad, every other theatre in the area decided not to play it. If it played at The Movies, it didn’t play at any of the UAs, or the Skyview Drive-In, or Scotts Valley. And if you went to The Movies, you were subjected to the worst cinema experience possible: extremely long and narrow “houses” with screens probably less than ten feet wide, with poorly maintained mono sound and a “I think we can fit this here” mentality when it came to the box office and snack bar. This theatre was so bad, even Troma wouldn’t play their worst dreck here. It was about the only place one could see the late 1980s output of Cannon and Empire Films. It is surely not missed.