Comments from GFeret

Showing 151 - 175 of 284 comments

GFeret commented about Copernicus Center on Nov 18, 2009 at 7:49 am

Pardon me I may’ve heard differently, that either the MILFORD or the ESQUIRE Theatres (when the latter was a single screen, before ‘plexing) were in fact the last of the hard-top carbon arcs.

Am I misunderstanding the above post tell me, the wording implies Gateway STILL has an old carbon-arc lamphouse on its projector(s).

Drive-in theatres in this area (down to a couple?) probably never changed over to Xenon.

GFeret commented about Lawndale Theatre on Nov 10, 2009 at 8:49 am

My RENA passby last week – not only no (restorative) activity there, it appears to be getting even worse shape. I predict no real hope, demolition inevitable, steal your last glimpses while you can there on Roosevelt.

GFeret commented about Happy 50th, "Sleeping Beauty" on Oct 30, 2009 at 2:20 pm

Thank you Peter. I wonder (and will soon do the math myself), the exact square-inch (or perhaps more properly square-millimeter) area difference, between a 65mm 5-perf. negative and the (horizontal) 8-perf. 35mm of Technirama (not to mention VistaVision).

GFeret commented about Happy 50th, "Sleeping Beauty" on Oct 30, 2009 at 1:37 pm

That Walt elected to photograph this triumph of classic hand-drawn animation, the last to use line-inking technique as opposed to xerography of 101 Dalmations, onto 70mm (the only one done so) has always seemed peculiar to me for the time of its production and release. Why? In the late ‘50s outside of T0DD-AO releases there wasn’t any other 70mm production, save Raintree County and Ben-Hur(coming after Sleeping Beauty which was in production 5 yrs IIRC). So from an exhibition standpoint it makes little sense, was the intent to take advantage of the 70mm installations so far used only for the TODD-AO’s? Hmmm.

On the other hand from a production standpoint it makes tremendous sense to me, not only that shows ambitious vision. In other words Walt committed to the new format instead for it’s negative quality, all the enormously labor-intensive work was to be captured in the new large gauge so it is best preserved for future generations. This view separate thinking from how it may or may not be actually exhibited.

That’s my own thinking so far, not without it’s logic holes, i.e., the rich 3-strip Technicolor process Disney commonly employed in 35mm did not exist in 70mm. So while you have the potential for magnificent image detail in 70mm, color rendtion’s be superior in the 35mm reductions that were all (at the time) printed IB Tech.

A final point, the Wikipedia website that lists all 70mm feature productions from the start, curiously omits Sleeping Beauty. Why, because only live-action? I don’t think so.

GFeret commented about Century 12 Evanston and Century CineArts 6 on Oct 30, 2009 at 8:39 am

Pro’s: film title selection always includes a couple titles in very limited release (some other theatres should have this variety;
bargain matinee prices, best buy is 1st show of the day;
free parking in lot across Maple St (my girlfriend reminds me to validate my parking ticket in the little machine at theatre);

one Con; restrooms for the theatres one must walk a distance and through the dining area! What is this, didn’t they ever have to go real bad and not want to miss anything? Sheesh.

GFeret commented about Remembering Cinerama on Oct 12, 2009 at 11:28 am

As one who was lucky enough to be brought downtown as a boy to either the Bismark (now Palace) or McVickers theatres in late ‘50s-early-'60s by my wonderful uncle (we called him Johnny) to see these in their original 3-strip projection format (including the CineMiracle variant), a few first-hand things I can add:

1) at the time(s) I went in those years, usually but not always Christmas, the showtimes were well attended but by no means ‘full houses’. Yes the engagements’s seem to go on forever. Considering the level of set-up engineering needed to insure a seamless picture-perfect (pardon the pun) performance for each new release, it’d seem they’d want to get the longest mileage run out of it;

2) tickets were always sold reserved seat fashion, I enjoyed it all no less from the cheapest (upper) balcony seats in any case;

3) it’s always amazed me the projectors (3) utilized ‘vibrating aperture plates’, obviously to blur the 2 hard edges between picture panels and make them less noticeable, although they always could be made out by the picky;

4) and it’s worth pointing out (maybe it’s been already elsewhere) at least one 3-strip title I know of – BROTHERS GRIMM – got printed in Technicolor’s old dye-transfer process, furthermore for the Cinerama prints only (not 35mm general release).

GFeret commented about Mayne Stage on Sep 15, 2009 at 10:18 am

I just learned of this brouhaha & shuttering from my pretty friend Claire.

Wonderful disappointment Chicago Style.

At least 4 shootings resulting in deaths in the area earilier this yr. Don’t quote me on that.

I supported the foie gras ban.

GFeret commented about Round Up Theater on Aug 26, 2009 at 12:30 pm

ooh – why do you even say such a thing SSB about the UPTOWN (yes I know not the right place for this). You see I drove by it yesterday expecting to see some sign of change or progress since ownership and policy question resolved a few months back. And you know what I saw? A lotta nothin'.

GFeret commented about Marbro Theatre on Jul 9, 2009 at 7:33 am

Trolleyguy: you’re of the opinion Dillinger tossed out possible movie theatre choices based on 2 he knew to be air-conditioned, one of them being close the other distant? Besides the COVENT I’d mentioned above there’s of course also the CENTURY (maybe he wasn’t aware of those 2?) big and not far. In 1934 I’d venture to say the bigger playhouses had installed A-C like the BIOGRAPH did. The small nearby venues like the EASTERLY or PARKWAY probably not yet, and the CREST (later 3-PENNY) right across from the BIOGRAPH was (temporarily) used non-theatrical.

All things considered I still like my more sinister explanation above for the MARBRO, certainly more in character for John D. than just “where’s the air conditioning?” Not a crucial reasoning for a man who needed to lay low in the public eye after all.

GFeret commented about Marbro Theatre on Jul 8, 2009 at 7:30 am

I wondered about Dillingers choice of theatres because, obviously, the MARBRO ain’t nowheres near (the BIOGRAPH). If I were selecting neighborhood shows strictly based on seeing a movie per se, I certainly wouldn’t pick a possibility so distant myself. A more logical 2nd choice would’ve been the COVENT Theatre, a large place not so far.

In PUBLIC ENEMIES one of Melvin’s men correctly assumes John would not go to the Marbro based on the fact it was showing a Shirley Temple pic at the time (this we hear in the films dialogue, assuming it is a booking fact). So why then would Dillinger have even considered the Marbro, by mistake? Maybe a better theory he had some (dirty) business cooking out on the city’s west side, and the theatre locale made the 2 convenient.

GFeret commented about Marbro Theatre on Jul 6, 2009 at 12:24 pm

PUBLIC ENEMIES – the John Dillinger movie out last week, this theatre is mentioned more than once as an alternate to the Biograph Theatre for his final nite out. Those’ve seen the movie will know what I mean, I just wonder if it has any basis in reality?

Important but: the way this theatres name’s pronounced by the players in the movie, it still sounds to me like they’re all saying MARLBORO (not just MAR-BRO). Doesn’t it to you?

GFeret commented about Piper's Alley Theatre on Jun 18, 2009 at 12:50 pm

to CmFan:
you mentioned Webster Place, well they have the parking thing going on with the adjoining garage. Business there wouldn’t be what it is, facelift or not, without that parking IMO. If only P.A. could do likewise with their adjoining garage. But maybe the garage on North Ave’s too small to faciliate this?

The updates you listed above are well and good. The restrooms behind the concessions per se don’t seem problematic, it’s not like one has difficulty finding them. But it would be better if they also had restrooms up on the theatre floor level, although so many (old) theatre put their facilities down in the basement so maybe that’s being too picky?

AMC MovieWatcher in the past has sent me surveys evaluating my last P.A. experience, and the one thing I might complain about is speed of ticket purchase. Have theatre managers forgotten so many arrive just 1-2 minutes before showtime, and until automated ticket dispensing’s perfected we need and want to buy our tickets without enduring one lengthy transaction after another.

GFeret commented about Piper's Alley Theatre on Jun 16, 2009 at 1:34 pm

If P.A. theatre people had more than half a head on their shoulders, they’d offer a can’t-pass-this-up price break for parking at the adjoining garage. That can and will make all the box-office difference.

The parking garage however from what I’ve seen has all the business they can handle from 2nd city and other Wells St attractions, so lot full happens. It vexes me the City of Chicago monster has evolved, so much of vital commerce crucially turns on a stupid thing like parking, a thing which hardly mattered in my own youth.

Here and at other sites this place gets bad-mouthing I don’t see it deserves at all. It is just fine, and right outside the ticket-door you can scrutinize the handprints of Carol Channing, Gary Sinese, and many others.

GFeret commented about Round Up Theater on Jun 9, 2009 at 6:37 am

ROUND-UP (DALE) status as of yesterday – GONE.

As alluded to in the post directly above it was demolished last week.

Everybody hurry over to get your souvenier bricks, so you can mark and display next to your LUNA and PALACE Theatre bricks.

The owner should’ve posted to this site, if he had the sensitivity much less the guts, so one of us could’ve gone inside as a representative and final photographer.

GFeret commented about Patio Theatre on Jun 2, 2009 at 1:19 pm

Re.: PATIO marquee –

trucks keep ramming it, can’t say why this should be a particular problem in more recent times. Someone else can speculate?

GFeret commented about Patio Theatre on May 20, 2009 at 2:02 pm

For PATIO to remain standing profoundly disused for so many years sort of tells me the owner awaits even expects the right terms to be brought them for putting it back in business. Optimism, can’t fault them for that. Otherwise it’d’ve wiped away already, right?

I think of other disused old neighborhood movie palaces that came back to life after years, but unfortunately I can think of some—Montclare is one—the owner seemed to want to but after time ultimately gave up the ghost. With that in mind what’re the realistic odds for the PATIO—there’s poor street parking and it ain’t of any architectural significance.

GFeret commented about Lawndale Theatre on May 20, 2009 at 1:51 pm

A Feb. post above claims LAWNDALE/RENO renovation stalled, and having driven past there last week yes—unfortunately no (outwardly) visible progress at all.

GFeret commented about Wicker Park Theater on May 1, 2009 at 1:38 pm

You’re on the wrong side of the street David Z., cross Milwaukee Ave to the East side. You can tell automatically by the odd-numbered address that’s the right side for the Wicker Park Theatre, the Double Door being on the even-numbered west side of Milwaukee.

GFeret commented about Laugh Factory on May 1, 2009 at 1:04 pm

Movies! return to the LakeShore, move over live theatre venue.

I just noticed Monsters Vs. Aliens (which I already saw) advertised playing here now, matinee & evening showtimes. I wonder what their pricing policy is, to take over the shuttered 3-Penny?

The last title I remember seeing here was Dead Zone w/ C. Walken, to give you an idea.

GFeret commented about Moviemax Cinemas on Mar 30, 2009 at 11:21 am

GolfGlen re-opening as a BIG CINEMAS Theatre, or so the recent sign change there says.

GFeret commented about Niles Square Cinema on Feb 16, 2009 at 6:34 am

DavidZ: from my recollections I’d agree with your above post about OMNI. Not very long after OMNI gave it up their main competition the nearly identical CUB FOODS also entered the local history books. I sort of regard both of them as the direction generic foods, which started back in the ‘70s, took. Now we have a local chain called FOOD-FOR-LESS, the comtemporary manifestation of the old Kroger Foods stores, that’s much in the same vein as OMNI/CUB.

Getting back on movie theater topic before I say bye for now, there must be others out there who feel strongly as do I, the area of the old LAWRENCEWOOD Theatre needs and is a ripe market for positioning a new multiplex.

GFeret commented about Round Up Theater on Feb 4, 2009 at 12:50 pm

BWChicago: as you can see on the flyer that old photo’s printed side-by-side with the Glenview one dated 2009, and as such even if the intent is to express ABT’s age by printing 1936 over the old picture, you’ll agree most people will presume the vintage date/photo represent eachother actually.

GFeret commented about Round Up Theater on Feb 4, 2009 at 7:37 am

Excuse me for appending my own entry above:

ABT claims this old photo dates to 1936 (?). Does that make sense given the film actually playing the ROUND-UP? And storefront advertising in the window of the old ABT store says “January Trade-In RoundUp”, a tie-in with their nextdoor neighbor also visible in the photo.

GFeret commented about Round Up Theater on Feb 4, 2009 at 7:04 am

Referencing the preceeding ROUND-UP / DALE entry by Mr. R. Smolen:

Right now no need for me nor anyone else in this area (ABT has quite a huge database of old customers) to drive out to Glenview to see this theatre photo, because it appears re-printed right on the face of a mass-mailed flyer advertising ABT’s 73 yr. customer appreciation day sale this weekend (sorry for the unavoidable plug). And it’s clear enough to make-out now-playing film THE FAR FRONTIER (Roy Rogers 1949 – imdb) dating the image for us and in keeping with the new Westerns policy stated in the data at CT page top. Other ABT customers around here remember their 2 other store locations both in Morton Grove (the earlier of the 2 right across the street from the old Morton Grove multiplex on Dempster Ave), previous to Glenview. No endorsement intended whatsoever.

GFeret commented about New Rex Theater on Dec 19, 2008 at 9:39 am

Didn’t think someone’d pounce on this very minor entry so fast!

I agree about the auditorium. From the Grand Ave front, the facade has yellow-brick funeral home all over it.