UA Lynbrook 6

321 Merrick Road,
Lynbrook, NY 11563

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Showing 126 - 150 of 173 comments

dave-bronx™ on March 28, 2007 at 12:21 pm

EdSolero- Re: your 11/24 comments on the marquee, they re-did the marquee at the Criterion on Times Square in the same manner – United Artists across the top and ‘The Broadway’ on the bottom. I never knew what that was suppose to mean as they continued to advertise in the paper as United Artists Criterion.

Vito on March 28, 2007 at 9:21 am

The changeover to managers in the booth is spreading all over the country. IATSE Local 640 of Nassau and Suffolk counties has been able to keep the wolves from the door until now, but it has been common in New Jersey and Westchester for a while now. Only NY Local 306 is able to prevent this, due in part to the requirement by NYC law of an operator’s license. Although I suppose one could argue it’s only a matter of time before managers get licenses or the license is done away with. Optioning a license requires only a written exam; the practical booth exam has been done away with, and costs only$60 every two years. I retired in 2005 but still plan on renewing my license every two years.
Of course the quality of the projection goes down hill with ushers running the booth, but managers in some circuits are receiving projectionist training prior to going into the booth and as a result seem to be doing a fair job. The problems come about when managers are required to perform other duties simultaneous to their booth work, or when union operators are required to operate two locations at a time. I believe the projectionist should never leave the booth.
As for cost, of course it’s cheaper for the exhibitor to employ managers, and they are of the mindset if they lose a show or two it’s still cheaper than having a pro in the booth full time.
So the sad truth is, expect less and less professionals running the show and more and more mishaps on the screen. I do however believe it will be quite a while before you see that in city theatres, I hate to see that change anytime soon.

Mike (saps)
Mike (saps) on March 27, 2007 at 4:32 pm

I saw a movie at the Lynbrook this weekend and when I asked if Tom the projectionist was working that night, I was shocked to learn that they have fired all their projectionists, and now the “managers” are running the show. I spoke to a manager and she told me it happened about a month ago, to save money, and was happening at the smaller UA sites. This was always a union shop and I dread that the quality of presentation will now deteriorate. The night I was there, they couldn’t get the sound to work on the pre-show advertising (a blessing?) and I guess it’s all downhill from here.

Meredith, what say you?

BMitchell on March 2, 2007 at 10:39 pm

Lost Memory … awesome postcard photo. I worked in the Lynbrook quad for a couple of years in the early 80’s. Many, many fond memories. The old stage, and the “elephant doors” opening to Hempstead Avenue are gone I guess (WHAT a pity), but what about the basement changing rooms? I’ve been there since it was six-plex’d and there doesn’t appear to be any use now of the basement, but it is there. And the ghost stories … anyone?

RobertR on January 29, 2007 at 3:42 pm

This Christmas 1954 as lists the Lynbrook as a Century Theatre, was it ever?
View link

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on November 24, 2006 at 7:44 pm

Here are couple of night shots I took recently:

The Lynbrook – long shot
The Lynbrook – tight shot

A few weeks ago when I passed by, the right half of the marquee was dark. Looks like they’ve fixed the lights behind the main panel, but the yellow border lighting on the right side still appear to be out.

Anyway… judging from the signage, looks like the official name of this theater is actually “United Artists Theatres The Lynbrook.”

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on June 12, 2006 at 8:19 am

Thanks Lost… looks almost identical to the postcard I posted from the site back on December 15th. According to the two features advertised on the marquee (“The Nth Commandement” and “Truxton King”) the photo from which this postcard was made dates from 1923. I wonder what is spelled out before the word “Lynbrook” on the front side of the marquee… can anyone make that out or care to make an educated guess?

Nice collection of images on that site… Unfortunately, I couldn’t find any for the Arcade/Studio 1 Theater that was located on Atlantic Ave around the corner from the Lynbrook.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on May 9, 2006 at 12:02 pm

Here’s a new link to my Lynbrook Theater album on photobucket.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on February 27, 2006 at 8:43 am

All the charm and atmosphere of the original interior appointments may be lost, but the exterior is still in good condition and I snapped a few photos of the place last week as I travelled with my camera around this area, as well as Valley Stream, Woodmere, Lawrence and Laurelton, Queens, to photograph some of the old theaters (and sites) I used to attend when I was a kid.

Long shot from the West
Theater facade
Marquee and entrance
Marquee and upper facade
Upper facade detail
Facade detail
Facade corner detail
Corner view from East

As I snapped these photos, I noticed a good number of children and their parents walking in for some matinee (probably Disney’s “Eight Below”). Whenever I stop in at the Cold Stone Creamery across the street, I notice many older kids and adults coming in and out of the theater – and usally adding to the very long Cold Stone queue for an after-movie dessert. From all observation, this theater is still very well attended.

A stage housing w/ fly space is evident in the long exterior shots of the building… I believe someone noted previously here that the former stage area and dressing rooms are still in existence.

I also took some shots of the former Laurelton Theater (including interior shots), RKO Lawrence and 5 Towns theaters as well as of the structures that are now in place where the former Studio 1, Valley Stream and [url=/theaters/8367/]Belair Twin[url] theaters once stood.

Meredith Rhule
Meredith Rhule on January 27, 2006 at 12:05 pm

I believe the place is non-union now.

Meredith Rhule
Meredith Rhule on January 8, 2006 at 3:13 pm

Hi Saps and Ed. Yes, I still pop in and check out the posts, only now I do it from South Carolina. Take Care y'ALL!!!

rbrewer on December 22, 2005 at 6:38 pm

FYI my nephew has taken a new 30 year lease on the former Cuban restaurant. There are no plans to demolish; however it is a separate property from the theater. I have never been in the theater but during my stay on LI (I helped renovate the restaurant) I noticed that it was doing a very enthusiastic business.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on December 15, 2005 at 1:17 pm

The cinematour site has this vintage postcard rendering of the Lynbrook’s original exterior and marquee. I can’t recall if there was ever a structure on the corner to the right of the theater during the days I frequented the place, but the postcard indicates something was there. It’s currently a vacant lot with the full side elevation of the theater exposed to Hempstead Ave. And I believe the current marquee is flat with no canopy over the entrance to the building.

chconnol on December 14, 2005 at 10:25 am

Used to be a grand theater.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on December 14, 2005 at 8:01 am

Yes… that’s right. Each auditorium had two sets of doors – one closer to the center lobby area and the other down the foyer hallway leading towards either side of the theater. I think there used to be benches against the wall near those doors down the hall.

Mike (saps)
Mike (saps) on December 14, 2005 at 7:40 am

I think that you can see the screen from the end (side?) doors, but the center door views are blocked by the booth. Next time I go I will make some observations.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on December 14, 2005 at 7:03 am

Hmmmm. Is the view of the screen through the doors completely blocked or just partially? I can clearly remember being able to see the screen (or part of it) through those windows back in the late ‘70’s and '80’s. I recall the incident I described previously where I frightened my younger brother with a glimpse of the original “Dawn of the Dead” and on other occasions waiting patiently for the end of the previous showing of a particular movie to end – trying very hard to resist the temptation to peak a glimpse at the film’s ending.

Mike (saps)
Mike (saps) on December 13, 2005 at 8:20 am

There is little evidence of the original decor. On the orchestra level the windows are still in the doors, but the wide booth blocks the view of the screens.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on December 13, 2005 at 8:15 am

Saps… just curious. Are there any remnants of the theater’s original decor in its current configuration? It’s been ages since I saw a film here and I frankly don’t recall much detail about the interior other than the windows on the doors leading from the foyer into the original orchestra-level theaters.

Mike (saps)
Mike (saps) on November 28, 2005 at 8:34 pm

I was here Saturday night and was happy to see the place was packed. There’s nothing like the excitement of a crowded movie theatre, everyone there to have a good time.

Meredith has moved on. But I think he reads this page so maybe we’ll hear from him.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on November 28, 2005 at 12:49 pm

Is Meredith Rhule still posting on this site? He is (was) the projectionist here and posted back in 2004 that the only thing holding up the demolition of this theater was the Cuban restaurant that occupied one of the store fronts in the building. While the other retail spaces do indeed seem to remain vacant, I passed by the place the other night and noticed that a new Greek restaurant is now a tenant in the building (to the left of the theater entrance). Is this where the Cuban restaurant was? Is it the same business owner operating under the same lease as before or have plans to demolish the building been scrapped and a new lease written for the Greek place? Just for old times sake, I ought to catch a flick here one day. If nothing else, it’ll be an excuse to grab some Cold Stone Ice Cream across the street afterward!

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on November 28, 2005 at 11:42 am

I remember this theater as a quartet back in the late ‘70’s and early '80’s. I saw many movies here (and snuck around from auditorium to auditorium on a single ticket on more than one occasion). We lived in Laurelton, which is the last neighborhood in Queens as Merrick Blvd crosses into Nassau County and becomes Merrick Road, and we’d often take walk to the Nassau border in Valley Stream so we could take the N4 bus to the Lynbrook. There was another smaller theater on Hempstead Ave just a block or so away called Studio One. I remember one night my Mom took a whole bunch of us out to the movies and everyone wanted to see “Rocky II”, except for me and my friend Mike who had seen it already. So they all saw that movie at the Lynbrook while Mike and I took in “Alien” at the Studio One.

I remember taking my little brother to see “The Muppet Movie” here and the virtually X-rated gore fest “Dawn of the Dead” was playing the downstairs theater on the right. Back in those days (and maybe still today?) the doors to the auditoriums had these square windows through which you could view the screen. My brother was too small to peer in to the theater, but he was curious about the zombie flick – which I had already seen and giddily described to him in vivid detail. I picked him up and let him peek in through the window just in time for him to watch one of the characters in the flick plunge a screwdriver deep into the ear of a zombie in graphic close-up. He was 7 years old at the time and it’s an image that is burned into his memory – as well as a story he still loves to tell to this day!

We used to lie about our ages to get into R-rated movies. Even at 14 or 15 we passed pretty easily for older kids and rarely had a problem. One time, however, we couldn’t convince the cashier that we were 17 and had to buy tickets to a PG-rated movie, when in fact we wanted to see “Dawn of the Dead.” I want to say we bought tickets for “Rocky II” but I’m not entirely sure. Anyway… we snuck into “Dawn of the Dead” regardless and were allowed to settle in and enjoy the flick for about 25 minutes until one of the ushers (a young guy probably college-age) came in shining his flashlight and asked to see our tickets. When he saw the stub, he just looked at us slyly, said “Son of a gun!” and escorted us to the front doors! So, we plopped down on the curb waiting for the bus to take us back to Queens and after a while that very same usher comes out of the theater and sees us sitting there rather dejectedly. He tells us that he was just getting off and wasn’t going to come in after us, but found himself gripped with a strong sense of duty! We certainly weren’t as amused as he so obviously was with himself and sent him on his way with a few choice words. We wound up finally seeing “Dawn of the Dead” at the Rivoli Theater in Times Square, where age restrictions weren’t quite as dutifully monitored.

I also remember having to walk all the way home from this theater after seeing a late show here one week night in the summer. The movie let out around 11pm or so and we didn’t realize that the bus stopped running completely after 10pm! We sat at the bus stop in front of the theater for nearly an hour before an usher exiting the theater informed us that there would be no bus until about 5 in the morning! What a walk that was! I was never so happy as when we finally came to the 7-11 located near the Queens border and realized (a) we could get something to drink and (b) the end of our journey was near! My sides start to hurt me just thinking back on that trek.

The UA Lynbrook was one of my many local cinematic haunts during the time. We also had the little Laurelton Theater on our side of the border, the Valley Stream, Belaire Twin, Century’s Green Acres and Sunrise Cinemas in Valley Stream as well as the RKO Twin and Fantasy Theaters in Rockville Center, the RKO triplex in Lawrence and the discount second-run Five Towns Theater in Woodmere.

DennisLeight on October 18, 2005 at 7:34 am

There once was a small Kimball theatre organ in this theatre. I looked at it once, back in the early 70’s while I still lived on Long Island. The console was intact and the cables still connected to the windchests in the chambers. The blower also still could be started. Unfortunately almost all of the pipe work had been removed. Everything relatively small, from Tenor C up had been removed by someone. The manager, whose name I have forgotten, was surprised to learn this from me. She had no explaination. Systematic vandalism, I suppose.

chconnol on February 2, 2005 at 11:48 am

Ugh! None of the old ornamentation is left? What a disgrace. This place was one of LI’s true movie palaces. If I remember correctly, it was (and pardon me if my architectural phraseology is not up to snuff) done in a “Spanish” style. What a shame.

Mike (saps)
Mike (saps) on January 28, 2005 at 4:04 pm

I recently had the opportunity to meet the projectionist here, a great guy called Meredith Rhule. He took me to all four (!) projection booths (one for the two orchestra theaters, one for the two balcony theaters, one on the former stage and the last in a former commercial space off the lobby) where I watched him run a grade-A show. We talked a lot about the deplorable state of modern movie presentation and had a few laughs at the expense of the dopes at Regal/UA for some of their arcane practices. Meredith was cool enough to show me around the place as well; we poked around the old backstage dressing rooms and downstairs I got a look at the orchestra pit, which really is a pit nowadays. We searched a bit for any signs of the former ornamentation, but little is left. It was a real treat to shoot the breeze with a true union professional, a man with a sense of history (he also worked the Chinese Theater and at private Hollywood screening rooms for many years before moving east). This guy takes pride in his work and it shows, a precious commodity in a world where the high-school usher often runs the show.