Comments from BrooklynJim

Showing 126 - 150 of 432 comments

BrooklynJim commented about Ridgewood Theatre on Dec 7, 2006 at 1:23 pm

My son, daughter and I met Julie Newmar at a convention back in ‘99. She even gave my daughter a personally autographed pic at no charge.

BrooklynJim commented about Ridgewood Theatre on Dec 6, 2006 at 12:59 pm

Best Buy, Wal*Mart, Tower (about to go belly up) and others have the Universal Legacy collection of the early Frankenstein movies, plus 2 separate collections of Karloff movies, all for under $25 each. Not a bad deal for up to 5 movies per package.

BrooklynJim commented about Ridgewood Theatre on Dec 4, 2006 at 4:03 pm

Thx, JKane! I looked up the “Space Children” cast on Imdb and spotted an original Mouseketeer: l'il Johnny (“Rifleman”) Crawford. Neat-o! Hope someone will release a DVD print in the not-too-distant future.

I agree with you, mikemovies, that $45-$60+ is usually way too much for most DVDs, but depending on who signed it, that copy (not this one, perhaps) could double in value within a year or two, sooner if the person/people involved happen “to go horizontal permanently.”

B-I-G $$$ in autographs out here in La La Land. (Sold my autographed color 8x10 of Sandra Bullock last year for $150.)

BrooklynJim commented about Ridgewood Theatre on Dec 1, 2006 at 2:58 pm

‘Tonino, agreed on “Babel.” I went into an instant coma during the trailer! If you want to try a good foreign film with Hitchcockian-like suspense, rent “Cache” (Fr) instead.

Go to eBay, mikemovies, and enter a search for “Forbidden Planet” DVDs. Just re-listed is the 20th Ann. Ed. signed by 6 people associated with the film. If you’re gonna spend $45+, this will probably appreciate far better than a small repro of Robby.

Appreciated all the comments on the “Watch the Skies” documentary which is included in the 2-disc “FP” edition. It does hold up over repeated viewings, except for a pair of George “Bad Haircut” Lucas comments in which he’s thoroughly full of it – or himself. (You’ll have to figure out which ones. LOL!) And I must get a copy of “Space Children” (1958). Looks decent and I didn’t even know it existed!

BrooklynJim commented about Ridgewood Theatre on Nov 29, 2006 at 3:34 pm

Don’t get burned, mikemovies. What’s selling on Deep Discount for $15.96 is an 11"x17" masterprint poster, suitable for framing. There may still be time to catch the mail carrier with your order! ;)

Peter, didn’t know the 50th Anniversary of “FP” had been out since Father’s Day. Perhaps that’s why I got it for the price I did. It should be 10 bucks higher.

None of us mentioned the TCM special, “Watch the Skies,” which is included in its entirety (55 min.). Great to listen to the various directors – Spielberg, Lucas, Scott, etc. – reminisce about what scared them and what didn’t ‘way back when they were kids. SS was totally disappointed that he never got to see any of the Krell. We kids in Brooklyn never gave them a thought as we were under the seats hiding from the ID Monster at the end. Never heard my heart hammer away that loud and hard since…

BrooklynJim commented about Loew's State Theatre on Nov 29, 2006 at 3:20 pm

Thx, Jerry & William. I had forgotten to mention that the late 1952 U/I Newsreel clip of “Thunder Bay” featured the marquee of Loew’s State in the background, clear as day. Stereophonic sound, as noted elsewhere for the “GWTW” re-release, was new for the ‘53-'54 era.

Will check further on “The Robe.”

BrooklynJim commented about Norwood Theatre on Nov 28, 2006 at 10:54 am

Hard to imagine that the single-story Hale Bowling Alley was once the Norwood Theatre! Wow! My dad (born 1911) lived in ENY at that time and had never once mentioned its existence in conversation, so I’m totally clueless here. (Dad did attend the Embassy Theater at Fulton & Richmond and bowled at Hale – “Go to Hale and Bowl” was their famous slogan – and at Halsey Lanes, replete with pin boys, on Broadway under the el.)

And mind you, I’m not disputing in any way that the Norwood did not do business briefly in the silent movie-era. Wish someone could unearth an old-time pic just for posterity’s sake. Lost Memory? RobertR? Tapeshare Rick? Bway? Anyone?

BrooklynJim commented about Ridgewood Theatre on Nov 28, 2006 at 10:21 am

Well, we’re back to Marie Callendar’s frozen meals following T-Day…LOL!

For the benefit of mikemovies and any others ordering films by snailmail, hit Google – or – to view varied places for prices. “Attack of the Crab Monsters” seemed to be going from $16.88 to over $25.

Turner Classic Movies has just released a superb 2-disc widescreen DVD of a movie that played at many a Brooklyn & Queens theater in 1956, including the Ridgewood: “Forbidden Planet.” A ‘50s sci-fi classic! (Roddenberry and Lucas have both admitted to being heavily influenced re transporter beams and people-as-holograms.) Bonuses include the complete WS version of “The Invisible Boy” (1957), a TV “Thin Man” episode from '58 featuring Robby, and some well-done and informative featurettes. Got it at Target for $19.99, a steal.

BrooklynJim commented about Loew's State Theatre on Nov 28, 2006 at 10:08 am

Catching up on a pair of August posts…

1) EdSolero, based on your 8/6 post, I viewed a newly-acquired DVD of Universal-International Newsreels last evening. One dated 7-17-53 gave us an answer to your “Kill the movie tax” query. Following headline coverage of the Korean War Truce, this particular segment had to do with the repeal of the movie tax by Congress. The repeal bill was introduced by Rep. Noah Mason, and the whopping 20% tax (!) was dropped as harmful to the financial well-being of small- to medium-size theater operations throughout the nation. In the filmed interview, Mason went on to state that the loss of the tax was in no way harmful to the U.S. Treasury.

2) 42nd Street Memories * Jerry Kovar mentioned James Stewart’s “Thunder Bay” in his 8/15 post. This movie showed up on an end-of-1952 U/I newsreel clip which credited it as being the first movie produced in CinemaScope. Here on the pages of CT and also written elsewhere, that distinction always seemed to go to “The Robe.” Is there somehow a very fine line between production and release? Which debuted first?

BrooklynJim commented about Update on site performance on Nov 22, 2006 at 10:43 am

There is very little I can add, except to echo Patsy’s (and others') positive sentiments. CT is truly one of the best retirement perks I’ve had the pleasure to enjoy. Happy T-Day to all!

BrooklynJim commented about Ridgewood Theatre on Nov 14, 2006 at 2:19 pm

Oops, I severely overestimated: It’s titled “Beast With 1,000,000 Eyes.”

BrooklynJim commented about Ridgewood Theatre on Nov 14, 2006 at 2:17 pm

To Peter’s “Surf ‘n’ Turfers” ~

Whenever I watch Corman’s “Attack of the Crab Monsters,” I start to salivate. That’s from too many King Crab buffet dinners lately at Valley View Casino – and for less than Roger’s budget. (Your estimate was much too high, Ed – under $9.99, and all actors involved donated their time!)

Can’t help you on “Liane,” mikemovies, but contact the Ridgewood and see if the owners will run a German-language film in a still-German speaking neighborhood. ;)

Don’t know if this 1953 Corman flick ever ran at the Ridgewood, but I did view it at the Peerless: “Beast With 100,000,000 Eyes.” Gasp!
Starred Paul Birch. Eventual “monster” alien at the end was depicted by a coffee percolator. [This bottom-of-the-barrel low-budgeter is available in DVD format only from the bootleg pirates mentioned in every FBI warning. I have a copy. Dum da dum dum…]

BrooklynJim commented about Ridgewood Theatre on Nov 7, 2006 at 1:38 pm


BrooklynJim commented about Ridgewood Theatre on Nov 6, 2006 at 5:52 pm

“The Dead Zone” made for some good post-Halloween fare: one of Christopher Walken and Brooke Adams' excellent performances, one of Steven King’s better stories (IMNSHO) and one of director Cronenberg’s more restrained films. And considering Martin Sheen’s role, it was an all-too-chilling preview to Election Day tomorrow!

BrooklynJim commented about Ridgewood Theatre on Nov 2, 2006 at 2:13 pm

Whenever a certain cranky PITA* is ignored lately, it seems that his equally crabby alter-ego (or toady) is never very far behind. Check his profile. His comments, restricted to only 3 theater pages since August, will give you a strong whiff of this clown’s negative scent. Has anyone else besides EdS and me noticed this predictable pattern? My Rx for this guy/these guys is a daily double nightcap of vinegar and water, followed by mainlining some extra-strength Geritol. Get a “reel” life!

Looking forward to attending some flix at the Ridgewood this winter. Find out if they can still get the heat up. Hope some of you kindred spirits and fellow travelers can cut corners on your social calendars and hang out, too. ;)

*Obvious acronym, used by permission

BrooklynJim commented about 'Death of a President' struggles to find exhibitor support on Oct 30, 2006 at 5:35 pm

One reviewer indicated that the director chose to treat Georgie as a sympathetic character, not as a lying, power-grabbing monster. He also said the film had merit, a surprise to him.

Still, I believe I’ll pass on this one and re-watch Stone’s “JFK” – at least until the Dixie Chicks' “Shut Up and Sing” documentary opens in my area.

BrooklynJim commented about Silver Star Playhouse on Oct 28, 2006 at 11:40 am

The Silver Star Theatre, as it was also known at some point in the 1940s, specialized in Chinese films. The theater name and marquee were written entirely in Chinese characters, translated this week by a lady friend of mine. (Thank you, Linlin!)

It is not listed in my 1944 redbook edition of the “Complete Street Guide to Manhattan and the Bronx,” but for whatever reason, many other prominent NYC theaters were omitted. The Park Row address above agrees with its proximity to Chinatown: Pell, Mott and Doyers Streets are all within rock-throwing distance. Silver Star was accessible by two elevated lines which shared trackage in lower Manhattan from South Ferry to Chatham Square, the station closest to the theater – the 2nd Ave. El (until 1942) and the Third Ave. El (until it, too, ceased NYC operations May 12, 1955).

A brief shot of the Silver Star Theatre – in color – is available on Mark1Video’s VHS tape, “New York Els Vol. 1.” (It also has one of the Variety Photoplay Show Theatre on 3rd Ave. & 14th St.) I plan to obtain the DVD version in the near future and hopefully can transfer a pic of each to their respective CT pages. Stay tuned…

BrooklynJim commented about Maplewood Theatre on Oct 26, 2006 at 10:02 am

Excellent shots, LM. I informed my Maplewood cousin about them.

It’s funny, tho, regarding the foibles of my “lost memory.” The ‘68 shot is far more vivid in my mind than the one from '73 – and my cousin didn’t actually move there until 1978 or so! Hope to snap a new pic soon…

BrooklynJim commented about RKO Madison Theatre on Oct 25, 2006 at 2:26 pm

Whitaker IS Amin. Chilling!

The ‘99 remake’s main character was named Price, too. What’s neat about this 2-movie WS package is that it includes some promo clips of Castle for several other flicks, such as “Homicidal” & “Macabre.”

[“…a regular RIOT, Alice!]

BrooklynJim commented about RKO Madison Theatre on Oct 25, 2006 at 1:58 pm

I majored in gratuity, so if I may…

With Halloween/Dia de los Muertos right around the corner, I just picked up a reasonably-priced reissue: Both versions of “The House on Haunted Hill,” ‘58 B&W & '99 color, both widescreen, for under $10. The first showed at the RKO Madison, Bushwick and Embassy, as I recall. (Peter will remind me that the floating skeleton over our heads was Castle’s newest gimmick at that time, “Emergo.” Watch.) The remake has Robert Zemeckis’s hand on it, so it shouldn’t be tooooo too bad. Special Feature extras showed that it, too, had some gratuitous nudity woven into shadows and other strange creatures.

mikemovies, beware of that Oldies site, a.k.a. Nina’s and/or Alpha in Norbert, PA. Prices are good. Quality is marginal, at best.

And for anyone wanting a recent movie of quality to sink yer mind and eyeballs into, try “The Last King of Scotland” w/ Forest Whitaker & Gillian (“X-Files”) Anderson. Lots of fiction re the young Scot doctor, but a most absorbing and riveting look at the dictatorship of Uganda’s Idi Amin.

BrooklynJim commented about RKO Madison Theatre on Sep 29, 2006 at 2:11 pm

Got my copy of “This Island Earth” earlier this month. Best feature: the (restored) color is the most vivid I’ve seen since the original release in ‘55. Worst feature: only available in full screen format.

As much as I like this movie over the aforementioned FP & WoW, I can no longer view it without hearing the witty, acerbic and often insane dialogue inserted in the “MST3K: The Movie” version. Tom Servo or Crow commenting on the initial appearance of Brack, Exeter’s assistant: “He’s president of the Buddy Ebsen Fan Club.” LMAO!

And for those of you who’ve patiently been waiting…

5 movies previously unavailable on DVD have been released by Universal last week and are available only through Best Buy franchises at the present time under the title of Classic Sci-Fi Ultimate Collection, and I believe every one played at RKO Madison matinees 1955-1958:

Mole People
Monster on the Campus
Incredible Shrinking Man
Monolith Monsters

I loved the $19.99 price tag, too. ;)

Can Gog (1954 in EastmanColor) be next???

[“If it’s ‘Universal,’ doesn’t that automatically make it ‘International?’” – Crow at the outset of MST3K’s “This Island Earth” parody.]

BrooklynJim commented about Ridgewood Theatre on Sep 28, 2006 at 5:15 pm

Back on 9-9-06, I posted about contacting Diaz & Mendoza, as there had been rumors about them wanting to sell. Always felt that this was a significant first step. Horse before cart, as it were. And despite my enthusiasm, I also added a caution on 9-11-06.

Since then, the page has been buzzing with many a good-intentioned preservationist, including references to pols and reporters. But it was Nicholas Hirshon’s latest article that threw me for a dizzying loop: Diaz raised his price from 3 to 7 million a few years ago, but doesn’t wish to sell now? That he wants to upgrade the Ridgewood, but doesn’t want (or understand) the potential tax breaks?

Something’s starting to smell long about now – and it stinks as much as the negative posts by one “Art Theatre.” Guys, take a step or two back and analyze the facts as to what we have now re this landmark situation. Please, before you commit any additional energies. Thx!

BrooklynJim commented about RKO Proctor's 58th Street Theatre on Sep 21, 2006 at 10:15 am

BILLY Ed Sol? Think I have a song or two of yours on the old Ero label. I’m Brook Lin Gim Yung. My pappy was a Chinese railroad builder and my mama from the coal mines of Wheeling, West Virginia. She, too, was a Billy Ed Sol fan. Small world. Dang me!

[“He is a self-made man and worships his creator.” – John Bright]

BrooklynJim commented about Sunrise Drive-In on Sep 19, 2006 at 4:26 pm

EdSolero, while I still have a copy of Jay Allen Sanford’s “Intermission” handy, I thought I’d post several generic excerpts here for the Drive-In aficianados and perhaps whet your appetite for the complete timeline:

1932: Richard Milton Hollingshead Jr., a chemical engineer and oil and grease salesman, conducts his first experiment in outdoor viewing by nailing a bedsheet between two trees and putting a 1928 16mm movie projector on the hood of his car. He designs a ramp system to angle parked cars upward and tests the effects of rain on the windshield by using lawn sprinklers. By August, Hollingshead is ready to patent his idea (#1,909,537).

1938: Hollingshead sells his patent to Willis W. Smith, who franchises it and requires drive-ins to pay royalties. However, Loew’s Theaters (owned by MGM pictures) convinces a Boston circuit court that a ramp built into the ground isn’t an invention, it’s landscaping, and Hollingshead’s patent becomes unenforceable. With drive-ins now public domain, the industry now undergoes a growth spurt.

1955: RCA sells a complete drive-in package (with its own financing), including a sound system, projection equipment, and lights to mark the parking-lot pathways.

1957: Concession stands generate important revenue, as do “free for children” admission policies (the latter heavily protested by the film industry, which feels this “cheapens” their prestigious product). Most drive-ins utilize fondly recalled intermission films featuring singing snacks, dancing hot dogs, and countdown clocks, popularized by filmmakers at the Filmack Company.

1958: The U.S. has approximately 4000 drive-ins, while Canada has around 40. Quebec has none because the province has banned them on the advice of the Catholic Church, which calls ozones “pits of iniquity and sinful excess.”

1960: In Texas, a few drive-ins have horseback hitching posts. The Theater Motel in Brattleboro, Vermont, rents rooms facing the screen and wired for sound.

[Lots more through present day. Enjoy! Thx, Jay!]

BrooklynJim commented about State Theatre on Sep 19, 2006 at 3:15 pm

Kudos, ken mc. Your sharp 1953 photo embodies most of the details – and the exact State marquee – as the 1954 view I’d described back on 7/3. Eventually, I hope to have the technical means to link the one from my book, plus a whole lot more from NY to CA. Thx for providing this pic for us in the meantime!