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If it does well, it’s probably only because of people trying to find an alternative to the Commack Multi-Obnoxious-Teenager-Plex! The Shore used to be an alternative (for me; I worked in Huntington village for a decade). Now that has gone “Lolita-Plex”.
The RKO Commack and RKO Rockville Center, were mirror image bookings in the early 1970’s. I think the Babylon was too. I have some ads, with these very uniform bookings that I will post soon.
Funny thing was, I remember the Commack Drive In being schizophrenic with their bookings—often I recall tame middle-of-the-road movies that my parents took me to see; features like “Popi”, “Cotton Comes to Harlem”, “The Gang That Couldn’t Shoot Straight”, “Save the Tiger” and “Diary of a Mad Housewife” and other non-Drive In type movies (THAT A KID WOULD NOT ENJOY)LOL. But I did love being at the Drive In nonetheless. Tracing back; I think the Commack D.I. was at it’s apex in 1975/1976 (the “David Carradine Era”). Consistent drive-in fare tended to play there. “Eat My Dust” was a big deal at the Commack D.I.! * non-exploitive movie ad, from 1969 Commack:
So when are we gonna have that “Commack Drive In / Commack R.K.O.” tailgate/reunion party ?
Saps, I saw “Taste the Blood of Dracula” (great title!) at the RKO, but have NO memory of “Trog”. I think my father made us leave before it started (knowing that it was a “bomb”?). Yeah, the Will Rogers thing was annoying…they did it at Whitman too? And I remember it was the same ritual at Elwood but I could be wrong. ____
By the way, I’m shocked that Elwood is still standing…That has “closed/demolished” written all over it! C'mon people—lets wreck it an put a C.V.S. up in it’s place!
I think they should change the name of this site to “Gone Forever”!LOL! I also WISH, there was a site like this for old department stores. Imagine cliking on a page of posts for “Korvettes, Commack, NY”, etc.! I remember the Modells in East Northport had a pet department with a small monkey (!) for sale. LOL.
WOW, Saps! Great story! Like I said before, at the time, “Willard” was the most talked about movie in town! LOL. Everyone loved the scene where the big mean boss Ernest Broganine, was killed by the army of ferocious rats—watch that scene today: it looks like the camera crew is is tossing poor little trained mice at Ernie and they are bouncing off of him. This movie made a TON of money for…Bing Crosby as it was his production company that backed “Willard”. “Night of the Living Dead” still holds up well! I remember the first time I saw it, on the late movie on A.B.C. circa 1976 on a Saturday night. Although I was not enriched by seeing “Night…” at Commack, I did see “Dawn…” there, Spring 1979, twice and it’s one of my best Commack D.I. memories of all time.
Was it the RKO the theaters chain where they showed that Will Rogers short “commercial” then had the ushers come around with cans collecting change? That was very strange and discomforting—even for a good charity..at least that’s how I had felt as a kid. They showed the “commercial” way into the 80’s and it was in horrible shape as well.
Asbury Park is currently pandering to gays and yuppies. This is good and bad. You won’t get the “cozy old fashioned” Asbury back from the 1940’s, nor will you have scuzzy Asbury from the 1980’s. You WILL get a safer neighborhood with two room condos going for $300,000. and specialized ice cream shops with $7.00 for a one scoop cone. It’s the classic “either/or” concept in the wicked econo-structure we live in today! The main problem , however, is that Asbury is a just a little too far commute to NYC, making DAILY travel, pretty draining (most of us can’t even tolerate a 45 minute subway ride). It will remain a “summer spot” I suspect, but the surrounding “ghetto” is still an issue to deal with…
Dig this! Too cool for words: Fellini & Hells Angels at…the Commack Drive In…
Still, a very nice theater !
A cool theater in the late 1970’s/early 1980’s. We used to go see “Rock n' Roll High School” every Saturday! Also saw “The Song Remains the Same”, “Up in Smoke” and others. Today is features somewhat stale adult-oriented concerts by performers you only thought were dead.
anyone know when it closed and what was the last movie to play ?
I guess it’s “happenstance”. The two theaters were not connected in any way. But when you think about it—were there any other two movie theaters ANYWHERE, that were so close together?
LOL! Great story! I think there should be a movie made about the whole “adult cinema” world…a retro-1970’s thing. would be HILARIOUS.
“Dawn of the Dead” was filmed at the Monroeville Mall …does anyone know if “Dawn…” played at this Drive In ??
We always pictured those huge metal comedy/tragedy masks coming loose and konking some unlucky partons on the head! I wonder if someone was smart enough to nab them when the theater was gutted?
Another GREAT Whitman double bill from 1973, that I was dropped off at by my parents (thank you, Mom & Dad!). Even though I missed out on the day my brother & his friends got to go see “The Neptune Factor” at the Whitman that same year, (LOL!), I got to see this:
Another ODD but fun Whitman double bill!:
I was from East Northport—graduated from Northport High in 1980. I have no clue why I took a job in Huntington (with no car!). I hated Pergaments, but I loved working in that area; especially with Korvettes, Cooky’s Steak Pub and the Whitman theater , which actually seemed “very 1960’s” in the 70’s! The Walt Whitman mall was very cool back then (it SUCKS NOW as it’s geared towards affluent women with nothing to do but shop all day and carry around those little glittery gift bags with colored tissue paper wafting out of the tops. Also, the SPEED BUMPS they put in are MURDER if you have a small older car that’s not a Hummer). So it goes; money rules—and who would have thought the “future” would have turned out like this? I’m glad I was born in such a uniqiue and un-calculated era as the 1960’s/1970’s.
Oh my gosh: this 1970 double bill was at the Commack RKO and the Commack Drive In…AT THE SAME TIME! Is this the first time this has happened?
Jean: were you involved with the Dawn of the Dead promotion above? Looks like FUN! Did the van go to OTHER UA theaters in the area?
“DAWN OF THE DEAD” promotion at Meadowbrook!1979!
a GREAT route 110 Drive In ad..(sorry the print is so small!)1972:
Oops…mistake above..I was trying to upload a 110 Ad..