Paris Theatre

4 W. 58th Street,
New York, NY 10019

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Showing 76 - 100 of 347 comments

cmbussmann
cmbussmann on September 5, 2019 at 7:27 am

Am upset that this closed, despite it feeling inevitable. Saw many great films here but my most-cherished memory was the recent 4K restoration of Howard’s End. It was so beautiful. Another real loss for the cinephile community.

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on September 4, 2019 at 4:50 pm

I saw the 4 digital restoration on a movie screen- it looks great. No matter what disc version you have, it is not the same as looking at 70mm film. If it is shown again somewhere….

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 on September 4, 2019 at 3:12 pm

Hello-

to Howard B.–

the Blu-ray disc I have of LOA which is !!! WOW !!! in both picture and sound was mastered from a 4K restoration. so do I have a Blu-ray disc of the restoration to which you referred?

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on September 4, 2019 at 3:02 pm

What I saw, was that the original colors were restored. I wrote this in 2017 for the 70mm newsletter after seeing a brand new 70mm print (at the Museum of the Moving Image) made from the 2012 restoration of Lawrence of Arabia:

Visually, this 70mm new print was astonishingly beautiful. The sharp 70mm resolution and the 70mm details were stunning. The restored colors were truly vibrant. The awesome 1989 restoration had looked good, with a beige colored dessert, but that same desert was often glowing in orange now in this restoration. Every frame of the movie popped in glorious color and detail. The sound was excellent. Surround sound was strong, from the “echo chamber” in the mountain valley to battle scenes. This screening of this epic film was exhilarating.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 on September 4, 2019 at 1:30 pm

Hello-

hey you learn something new everyday. what exactly is the difference between the 1989 Katz/Harris restoration that played he Ziegfeld and the 2012 one you mentioned?

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on September 4, 2019 at 12:33 pm

Sept 1997 was the Lawrence of Arabia 70mm, thanks to Al Alvarez earlier posting- I wish Al would post from the year 2000 to now. The Harris restoration was originally shown in 1989 at the Ziegfeld. The most recent restoration in 70mm dates to 2012 & is glorious!

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 on September 4, 2019 at 12:29 pm

Hello-

the Paris had a 70MM showing of the restored Lawrence of
Arabia? when ? I thought the Ziegfeld ran the 70MM release
of the Katz/Harris restoration of LOA?

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on September 4, 2019 at 6:04 am

To be accurate “Lawrence of Arabia” was not a Hollywood classic, it was a United Kingdom classic.

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on September 4, 2019 at 5:18 am

August 29, 2019 Spectrum News NY1 article has a video & a wonderful recollection! (I myself was lucky enough to have seen Hamlet in 70mm at the Paris, and wish I would have the chance to see L of A in 70mm there)

“The Paris Theatre was the last single screen, jewel box movie theater in Manhattan. It had a balcony, it had a purple curtain that opened up with the little ripple as the light of the projector hit it,” said Joseph Fusco, former Paris Theater manager. Fusco managed the Paris from 1997 to 2000. He shared pictures of the interior of the 581 seat theater with NY1, even a program from its opening night in 1948.His favorite memory? The re-running of a true Hollywood classic film.“We showed the restored 70 millimeter print of ‘Lawrence of Arabia’ which in this room was absolutely stunning and we had lines down to Sixth Avenue everyday," 

DavidZornig
DavidZornig on September 3, 2019 at 8:17 pm

February 21, 1969 photo added credit Walter Leporati. Courtesy 70s/80s New York City Facebook page.

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on September 2, 2019 at 5:12 am

The Jewish Voice 9-1-19 article “iconic Paris Theatre in NYC Closes Its Doors After Seven Decades” finished with “The theater has been a destination for many of the city’s intellectuals and movie connoisseurs, as motion pictures by directors including Federico Fellini and Franco Zeffirelli have been shown.”

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on September 2, 2019 at 5:06 am

Seth, I’ve seen movies at London’s Gate Notting Hill & agree it is a wonderful “cinema treasure.” Thanks for mentioning the 45% decrease article, which I just read. I also saw a Twitter feed of comments to the NYTimes Paris article with, again, many people upset at the theater’s closing and also like me upset at the article, some of those posting blaming backbiting in the NY arts community for the negative quotes. Last week, there were many other articles online about the Paris closing, many which I agreed more with. I loved the Town & Country article which included a photo of “Romeo & Juliet” on the marquee & many great quotes- here’s a couple- “It didn’t matter what decade we were in,” recalls Bryan Bantry, an entertainment industry polymath. Bantry’s offices were in a penthouse above the Paris for two decades, and he frequently rented it out for screenings. “Real New Yorkers who loved cinema” were always keen to see the single-screen theater’s latest. (also) In addition to hosting many a New York film premiere and serving up expertly-curated programming, the Paris was a center of gravity for a certain set. “It was a happy place for many people, and we’re always looking for happy places,” Bantry says. He describes the theater’s balcony, which boasted great sight lines; people in the know, he says, always went straight up the stairs. (from Howard- after my 1st several films there, I too, always sat in the balcony!) 

SethLewis
SethLewis on September 2, 2019 at 1:02 am

Well said Howard…The Paris like the Gate Notting Hill in London (now over 100 years old) is one of those theatres that appeals to people who don’t go to other cinemas but enjoy the diversity of programming. Distributors will miss it for the exposure that there movies had and film lovers will miss it. The other article in today’s NYT is that speciality box office is down 45% this year and filmmakers will want someplace to show their films beyond streaming We live in hope!

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on September 1, 2019 at 8:11 pm

Today’s NY Times article has one wonderful quote: “That’s terrible,” said Duncan Hannah, a painter who loved the theater on 58th Street by Fifth Avenue for the French movies and the quality of New York gossip you could overhear in the plush seats.

“It looked like the fancy cinema on an old ocean liner,” Mr. Hannah said. “I crossed the Atlantic to France when I was 14, in 1967, and they had a cinema that looked like the Paris.”

Unfortunately, much of the rest of the focus of that one article is by people questioning when we who loved the Paris actually last saw a movie there? Well, I not only saw Pavarotti there this year, but also enjoyed Never Look Away and Sunset, both subtitled foreign films. Last year, I saw Mary Queen of Scotts, Colette, Gauguin: Voyage to Tahiti, and Lean on Pete, in 2017: Victoria and Abdul, Paris Can Wait, Their Finest, and so forth, I saw movies every year for a quarter of a century! I saw my 1st movie at the Paris in 1989 (Crusoe) then in 1995 resuming visits to the Paris (as I don’t live in NYC but in Philly) to see the movie Jefferson in Paris, I saw movies every single year, for a total of 85 movies seen at the wonderful Paris. And, despite the snarky focus of the NY Times, I read the comments of actual film goers online, and understand there were many others who saw every movie or many movies at the Paris. I met some in person while attending movies there & know others here who have. Often those movies that I saw at the Paris were my favorite movies of the year.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on September 1, 2019 at 8:23 am

Village East probably in the best position to survive for a while – not that I know anything about it’s profitability. I’m just thinking in terms of having a historic theater with its original auditorium still intact, while having the support of 6 other auditoriums within the facility to compete with today’s multiplexes. Also has the advantage of being in an area of Manhattan where geological conditions do not lend themselves to the development of high rise towers. I would imagine the locals also reasonably support the theater.

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on September 1, 2019 at 6:46 am

Posters here need to remember (and realize when comments are deleted) that this website is not about politics or matters that stray from discussing the movie theaters. If the Paris is gutted or demolished for higher economic returns, that would be a tragic loss of a wonderful, movie theater that properly showed films, and a theater that is a cultural resource for New York. I am heartbroken by its possible loss, as are many other people from comments I read at news stories online of its closing. We must enjoy other historic movie theaters while they last, such as City Cinemas Village East and City Cinemas 1,2,3. I can’t quickly think of other commercial (daily movies, for profit) movie theaters in Manhattan that are historic? other than 42nd St’s AMC Empire using a historic theater as a lobby.

ridethectrain
ridethectrain on August 31, 2019 at 9:42 pm

You might want to add to description on September 1, 1990 the theatre was renamed the Loews Fine Arts when they operated the theatre when they took their short control of the theatre. On August 31, 1990 was the last day Pathe (City Cinemas was also doing the booking then). See my photos I just uploaded

vindanpar
vindanpar on August 31, 2019 at 9:07 am

Terrible terrible terrible. Even if the movie wasn’t good like some bad artsy French film it was always a pleasure coming here. Still remember those long weekend lines from decades ago. One of the last remaining signs that New York was once a great city.

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on August 30, 2019 at 4:15 am

Curmedgeon, I agree totally with your description of the Paris. If you google “Paris Theatre NYC closed” as of yesterday, there’s many new articles & at least a couple TV news videos. In those articles & comments to them & the articles earlier this summer, there are many people upset. Many like me who viewed the Paris as their favorite! There’s also movie distributors upset because the this theater produced a significant percentage of their revenues on a film- the Sony guy said up to one third, and for Pavarotti, 9% though the movie was in 300 theaters! And, there were many special events at the Paris, so more who will be upset. As to the Ziegfeld, it was beloved but often dark (closed) as it was huge & the mainstream movies played everywhere & mainstream movies are not so great anymore. The Paris was never closed (except for transitions to new operators such as more than 2 months in 1997 after Loews/Sony departed and briefly for seat refurbishment 2 years ago). And the movies at the Paris were always worthwhile!

curmudgeon
curmudgeon on August 30, 2019 at 3:21 am

This is an absolute tragedy. During my visit to NY a decade ago The Paris was a glorious reminder of what cinama once was. Atmosphere, friendly and efficient staff, true showmanship presentation, screen masking, screen tabs that were actually used, and a wonderful indie movie that would probably never have received a theatrical release elsewhere. By comparison, my visit to the so-called “iconic” Ziegfeld theatre was a souless experience of less than a dozen audience members, screen curtains open to greet the audience with a blank screen devoid of any showmanship whatsoever. Can’t believe the outrage that was posted on CT when the Ziegfeld was facing imminent closure as opposed to the whisper of sadness of this magnificent cinema that brought such impoertant films to NY audiences over the past 70 years.

SethLewis
SethLewis on August 29, 2019 at 3:15 am

A great festival of Paris classics including Romeo & Juliet, Merchant Ivory would have been a way to send it off

xbs2034
xbs2034 on August 28, 2019 at 9:47 pm

Indeed, I went several blocks out of my way going home this evening to check out the theater, and there is a small sign on the front door saying it is now closed due to the lease expiring. I have not liked the abrupt way City Cinemas handled these closures, particularly with the Paris which opened over 70 years ago, they could have made an announcement in advance and provided more than a hastily put together note that gives no sense of the cinema’s history.

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on August 28, 2019 at 5:37 am

As of yesterday morning, Pavarotti was listed at the Paris as “sold out” at every screening today Wed & tomorrow Thursday, which would not be accurate since it has been showing for more than a couple months. I could be wrong, but my sense was that yesterday were the last screenings.

xbs2034
xbs2034 on August 28, 2019 at 5:28 am

There are showings listed through Thursday for Pavarotti on Fandango, but they don’t seem to be selectable. I thought this might be the week the theater closed with Labor Day/end of Summer movie season next, but seems like it would be another abrupt closing a couple days early if that’s it.

Can’t say I’m surprised if the Beekman is closing, I went there maybe once a year and crowds were always small. Though if City Cinemas is indeed losing three of its locations in such a short span, it begs the question if the entire chain is in trouble.

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on August 28, 2019 at 4:03 am

As of this morning, the City Cinemas website does not list this theater or its sister theater (as the building is owned by the same landlord) the Beekman (the twin that was renamed the Beekman). I do not know whether or not either theater will be reopened by a different theater operator, or not. I hope so.