Loew's Oriental Theatre

1832 86th Street,
Brooklyn, NY 11214

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Showing 101 - 125 of 250 comments

Bway on June 8, 2006 at 4:28 am

Here’s an aerial view of the massive Oriental Theater building:

View link

verranth1 on June 1, 2006 at 4:11 am

My mother lived on 19th Street between Cropsey and Bay Shore. She went to Lafeyette High School and was very pretty.

Her name was Vivian Gelardi.

She always told a story about this theatre.

One day, in 1959, “Pillow Talk” opened there. My mother went to a Saturday Matinee and loved it so much she stayed till the midnight show.

Now, my mother had told her mother where she was going but when she failed to show up for dinner, my Grandfather beagn to panic.

Within minutes, it seemed, the whole block knew my mother had been “kidnapped” and was out looking for her.

When my mother returned home and explained she had been in the movies all day, literally, 5 minutes from her house, my grandfather took off his shoe and started hitting her with it in the middle of the street.

I only went there once or twice but I loved the feeling of it which never exsisted in the more modern theatres of Central New Jersey, where I was raised.

CelluloidHero2 on May 4, 2006 at 6:42 am

DOn’t forget about the WALKER and further down 18th Ave.(Near MacDonald Ave. under the L) the CULVER.

YMike on March 20, 2006 at 5:21 am

You can add the Marboro to that list.

Theaterat on March 20, 2006 at 5:13 am

East Cost Rocker… Sorry to hear about your mother`s death. On the way you took to the VZ from Luna Park, there were at one time no less than7 theaters there. They were the SHORE, the TILYOU, the STILLWELL, the BENSON, the ORIENTAL, the HOLLYWOOD and the DYKER. Also, not too far away from these were the MERMAID, the SURF, the TRUMP Cinema, the TUXEDO and the DELUXE. Each and every one is now closed, abandoned, demolished, or used for retail. As long as we remember them, they will be , as Neil Young says in RUST NEVER SLEEPS- “gone, but not forgottren”.

EcRocker on February 15, 2006 at 6:37 pm

You know as close as i lived to the Oriental I had never seen a movie there. It was 2 years ago today that my mom died and her funerak was on Feb 18th 2004. She lived her last years in Luna Park. On my way back to Maryland I took my gf through some of the areas i used to hang out in. On the way to the VZ Bridge instead of taking the belt I went straight up 86th st to Ft Hamilton parkway. I wanted to dry when I went by there. I remember all the fights that used to break out on weekends after the last shows let out and people would rush the Vegas Diner. At least the time I passed by the old Lady of 86th street the marquee was not covered over. RIP great Lady.

zomboscloset on January 14, 2006 at 7:19 pm

I saw my first horror film here, The Terror, with Boris Karloff. I forced my parents to take me so I didn’t have to stay with the babysitter. My mom loved horror, but dad hated it. I loved the balcony and dark interior, and it was close enough to walk to on spring and summer nights to catch the latest horror or sci fi flick. I was heartbroken when it closed.

John (http://zomboscloset.blogspot.com)

PKoch on November 16, 2005 at 11:54 am

Thanks, Warren. Perhaps it meant a new Loew’s Twin Theater was about to be opened, or ground broken to start construction of one.

jbels on November 9, 2005 at 5:55 am

That photo is great JohnG, I remember seeing The Deep there. We would ride the bus up from Bay Ridge (The B-13 if I remember correctly, or B-39? Can’t remember and don’t live around there anymore). Saw The Big Bus there, saw Airplane, the Psychic Killer, one of the Friday the 13th’s, Ferris Bueller, etc…Last film I saw there was The Brady Bunch Movie and the theatre was in disrepair by that time.

rigelstar on August 19, 2005 at 6:58 am

From what I remember, the neon signs were working, however, not all of them at the same time. There was always one or two letters out.

PKoch on August 19, 2005 at 6:49 am

My father remembers an appearance by Al Jolson at the RKO Madison Theater in Ridgewood, Queens, almost on the Brooklyn-Queens border, and probably, like the Ridgewood, to this day, listed in newspapers as being in Brooklyn.

My dad remembers that Jolson “brought the house down” with “Mammy” and other big numbers. He also claims to have met Jolson coming out of the subway a block from the Madison Theater at Myrtle, Wyckoff and Palmetto, directing him to the Madison, and getting free passes to the show as a result.

I would have thought a star of Jolson’s stature would have pulled up to the back entrance of the Madison on Madison Street in a limousine and entered the theater that way.

rigelstar on August 19, 2005 at 6:38 am

Thank you SO much for those wonderful pictures. They really sent me back.

Mike (saps)
Mike (saps) on August 18, 2005 at 8:58 am

Warren, PA = Prince Albert? Then the tour should include the Cameo, no doubt.

YMike on August 18, 2005 at 5:29 am

Al Jolson made an appearance at the Oriental to promote his film “Jolson Sings Again”. He also went to other Loews theatres in Brooklyn on the same day.

CelluloidHero2 on August 18, 2005 at 2:44 am

RobertR – I don’t know for sure, however, I wonder if it was a rock n roll show or was he himself just touring theaters to romote “Rock, Rock, Rock”.

RobertR on August 18, 2005 at 2:34 am

I never knew Alan Freed played his shows at the Oriental.

Mike (saps)
Mike (saps) on August 17, 2005 at 8:34 pm

Essentially the same marquee in 1950’s and 1977, but I wonder if all the neon was still working in the latter days.

CelluloidHero2 on August 17, 2005 at 5:29 pm

I found this on the web long ago. Not sure where or who to credit.
A great shot of the marquee.

View link

RobertR on August 17, 2005 at 2:20 am

The marquee still looked great then.

CelluloidHero2 on August 16, 2005 at 5:06 pm

Here’s a photo I took back in 1977.

View link

CelluloidHero2 on August 5, 2005 at 7:21 am

Thanks Lady Rigel. I’ll have to watch the film again and pay close attention to those scenes.

Just as a note Other movies filmed the Bensonhurst area include The French Connection, Dog Daya Afternoon and Sat. Night Fever with it’s classic opening sequence of Travolta walking down 86h St.

Anyone know of any other movies filmed in the area.

PKoch on August 5, 2005 at 6:24 am

That was it ! I cracked up, and COULD NOT take the rest of the film seriously.

PKoch on August 5, 2005 at 6:20 am

It’s called “Out For Justice”. I saw it in April 1991. I don’t recall if the Oriental was seen in it. I remember the el station was in it, and the following dialogue :

MAN : What chick ? (pointing) Her ?

SEAGAL : No, the other one over there, the one with the nipples you could dial a phone with !

rigelstar on August 5, 2005 at 3:45 am

JohnG409-Angie was film on 81st between 18th and 19th Avenues. I think you may know the block.

Also, I remember a Steven Segal movie being filmed at the intersection of 86th Street and 18th Avenue. Has anyone seen it and if the Oriental can be seen?

ERD on August 2, 2005 at 8:11 am

The Garden theatre was demolished in the 1950’s. I went there as
a child. It was called the “dump” in its last years. It was built before World War I. Originally, before air conditioning, the roof opened at night. A supermarket and now a lumber store and yard occupy the site where the building once stood. (The theatre is listed
in Cinema Treasures.