Comments from cmbussmann

Showing 1 - 25 of 28 comments

cmbussmann commented about Times Square Theatre on Jul 7, 2014 at 9:27 am

This theater was heavily featured in the 1980 film “Times Square” by director Allan Moyle. He filmed the climatic scene on top of the marquee:

cmbussmann commented about Nitehawk Cinema on Jun 27, 2013 at 8:43 am

Had a great experience seeing “Before Midnight” at the Nitehawk. They go all-in on the presentation with comfortable seating, a sturdy table for food and beverages, a hilarious pre-show, and unintrusive service throughout. I wasn’t sold on a dinner-theater but they sold me. Will definitely go back for some of their rep screenings.

cmbussmann commented about Blue Balcony Cinema on Mar 14, 2013 at 8:00 am

I suspect they are projecting both DCP and 35mm. They have a screening of Times Square booked in mid-March and I know that film is 35mm only.

cmbussmann commented about Le Parisien on Feb 7, 2013 at 1:40 pm

I am utterly dismayed to read this place has closed. It had one of the coolest exterior lay-outs ever. There’s a photo in the photos section that shows the way the marquee recessed and all the flags hung around it. I always thought it was breathtaking. I only ever saw one film here (Tom Tykwer’s Heaven — part of the Montreal World Film Festival in 2002) but I really enjoyed it. The place showed French films on the regular, often without subtitles, so I never made it back.

What a shame to read that it is closed and in decay. Maybe someone will rehabilitate someday.

cmbussmann commented about Cinema Egyptien on Feb 7, 2013 at 1:17 pm

The Cinema Egyptien was long closed by the time I moved to Montreal but I used to dream of it re-opening with three solid films on the marquee. I walked past this place often — imagine, a movie theater deep in the “underground city,” a place I traveled through often during Quebec’s sub-zero winters. Sadly, it was already in a state of pretty serious disrepair. Is it even still there? I would love to re-open that place someday.

cmbussmann commented about Forum 22 on Feb 7, 2013 at 1:01 pm

I didn’t get to the Forum much but I did like the way they maintained “center ice” and made sure you were aware of the building’s heritage. The Forum back then also did some brilliant counter-programing, being the only multiplex in Montreal that offered several screens up to a variety of indie and anime offerings.

cmbussmann commented about Red Vic Movie House on Feb 6, 2013 at 7:14 am

The Red Vic is across the street from where my sister lives and sadly it looks like it’s been closed for years. A lot of homeless people sleep in the doorways and garbage has piled up. The building has seen some vandalizing too, which is sad. I really hoped someone would snap this place up and re-open it. Maybe modify it a bit to do more food and stuff. It was a nice place and easily return. Hope someone figures it out soon before too much damage is done.

cmbussmann commented about BAM Rose Cinemas on Feb 5, 2013 at 1:00 pm

BAM has really stepped up their rep showings in the past two years. Great stuff that’s often not on DVD: Shy People, The Keep, Times Square, etc. That plus their top-notch taste in first-run films keeps this place easily in my top-three for places to go in NYC. The crowd is always enthusiastic yet polite (no texting, etc) and the staff is great too. The four auditoriums are nice, though the one downstairs is a little small.

cmbussmann commented about Riverside Mall 8 on Jan 17, 2013 at 1:15 pm

I had a blast seeing Election here with some friends back in the spring of 1999 but didn’t get to the Riverside much. It had intense competition from the Sangertown Square 9 in New Hartford. That said, the place had that great rundown 80’s charm and the concessions were cheap. Wish I could remember more of what I saw there.

cmbussmann commented about Ziegfeld Theatre on Sep 25, 2012 at 7:56 am

Saw The Master here on Friday in 70mm and the presentation was absolutely stunning! I am so grateful to The Ziegfeld for truly paying attention to the details: a staff member welcomed us to the theater and stated this was a special presentation. They also handed out comment cards after the show.

Having never seen 70mm before, I was blown-away by how crisp and beautiful it was. The movie itself was pretty good too.

cmbussmann commented about Center Cinemas on Sep 18, 2012 at 12:01 pm

If you miss the charms of the classic grindhouse aesthetic of the 70’s & 80’s, this place is for you: dim, cramped interior with sticky floors and broken seats. Projection that continually blurs with an image-ratio that rarely fits the screen (though this may have been solved with them recently going digital). Bathrooms that are straight out of a horror movie and concessions I would never venture to eat. Add in an indifferent staff, sagging marquee, cheap ticket prices, and a quarrelsome audience and you get a recipe for a fun night out — provided you don’t care too much about what you’re seeing there. For films like 28 Weeks Later, Taken, & Resident Evil: Extinction this place is perfect. Seeing Quentin Tarantino & Robert Rodriguez’s Grindhouse double-feature was heaven — I felt like I would walk right out of the theater and into another era. I’ve missed this place since switching from Queens to Brooklyn.

cmbussmann commented about AMC Loews Kips Bay 15 on Sep 18, 2012 at 11:44 am

AMC Loews Kips Bay 15 is not a great theater but it suits my needs perfectly since I work at a job that gives us discount AMC tickets and it’s only a few blocks north of my office. I also dig that the outside of the building is decorated with faded images of past movies and that their interior has classic movie posters in the hallways as well. A nice touch most chain operations would avoid.

I only use passes here. I would never actually pay full-price to see anything because the theaters themselves are hit-or-miss. Some screens are nice and big with pristine image and sound quality. Others are cramped and tiny with poor image and sound. Before they upgraded to 4K digital in the bigger auditoriums, I often saw pixelated images here, totally unacceptable!

One plus is that audiences here are often chill, even at odd times. You rarely get a lot of talking and texting. I did once see someone working away on his laptop in the front row but that was an exception. As a rule, I don’t get too riled by the audiences here. The place is also rarely packed. In fact, I wonder how well this spot is doing overall since I rarely ever share a theater with more than a few patrons.

cmbussmann commented about Ziegfeld Theatre on Aug 21, 2012 at 1:49 pm

I love The Ziegfeld to death and would be devastated to see it close. Easily my favorite place to see a movie in the city. The entire experience from the greeter to the chandelier to the curtain to the plush carpeting and trim, I love it all. And though I know it’s struggling financially, there’s nothing I love more than an empty house. I was one of maybe three people for a screening of The American and the awe of being in that vast space (center row, balcony) will stay with me forever. I’ve also been there when it’s been packed (Harry Potter, Casino Royale) and the crowd is often quite fun.

I’m not sure what the solution is for keeping this place running. I’ve been to some revivals there (like Dr. No) that were sparsely attended and others (like Blade Runner) that did so well they had their engagement extended. Fathom Event stuff seems to bring in a strong clientele as well. Hopefully, the owners can find a way to capitalize and keep this place going. It really is tremendous.

Does anyone know if The Ziegfeld still has 70mm capacity? I’d love to see The Master there in that format this Fall.

cmbussmann commented about Showcase Cinema on Aug 19, 2012 at 5:40 pm

Another thing I loved about The Showcase is that they took some chances on artier fare, which I also think helped drive them out-of-business as the college kids just didn’t turn out for these flicks like the management hoped. One screening of Gods & Monsters I attended had like five people in the room: three septagenarians, myself, and my skeptical friend who wasn’t really into art-house pictures. I think that was the last movie I saw there. My mother was recently lamenting that an hour-plus drive to Utica or Albany is now required to see something other than a blockbuster.

cmbussmann commented about Greenport Theatre on Aug 19, 2012 at 5:12 pm

We were out in North Fork this weekend and rolled into Greenport later in the evening on Saturday for dinner. We saw the Greenport Theatre marquee and got excited but we were too late to make any 9pm screenings. Not put off, I ducked into the lobby and — wow! — the place looks great: a beautifully restored lobby with a stand-alone ticket booth, nice concessions, vintage signs, tasteful decorations, and an overall cheerful and successful atmosphere. I know this place is seasonal and I wonder how well it’s actually doing but it looks great and I really want to see a film here now.

cmbussmann commented about Cinemark Movies 10 on Jul 11, 2012 at 1:16 pm

This was a second-run dollar theater back when I lived in Rochester (mid-to-late 90’s) and I basically lived there on the weekends, sometimes catching as many as three movies at a time. The place was in decent shape with nice projection and comfy seats. The crowds could be obnoxious so I was careful about what I went to see here: horror and action films were usually fine but this was not the spot to catch an artier film as the audience would often revolt and boo and throw things, etc. Had a great time watching such high-brow fare as Jason X, Fallen, Godzilla, Halloween H20, The Corrupter, etc. — Jason X being a particular favorite as this big dude down front kept yelling stuff like “Oh no, look out, you gonna die!” with everyone laughing around him. It’s funny what you are willing to put up with for a buck! If I’d paid full-price, I would’ve been annoyed with the audience but somehow they only made the experience there more entertaining.

Not sure what the status is with this place now. Dollar theaters are closing all over the country. There certainly is no discount second-run place left in NYC, which has contributed to a drastic drop in my movie consumption.

cmbussmann commented about Monroe Theatre on Jul 11, 2012 at 1:07 pm

While I am sad to read that this place has been demolished, I am also not surprised. I lived around the corner from the Monroe Theatre in the mid-to-late 90’s (when it was Show World) and it was a sketchy place for sure. Got mugged once right out under the marquee! Lots of drug dealers and pimps around too. It was funny to watch respectable Pittsford-looking types ducking in to purchase porn on their lunch breaks. I never went inside even though I was curious about the interior. Would’ve loved to have seen this place in all it’s 70mm glory!

cmbussmann commented about Film Forum on May 16, 2012 at 1:33 pm

I finally broke down and bought a membership to Film Forum. I don’t know why I didn’t do it years ago. But with the upcoming Spaghetti Western series, I know I’ll be hitting this place up at least ten times so why not join and get the tickets for less. And honestly, it’s great to support a robust independent theater. Even if their three screens are small and cramped.

I’ve had many wonderful experiences at Film Forum over the years: meeting Werner Herzog at a screening of White Diamond was a particular favorite but I also really enjoyed seeing Battle Of Algiers, Days of Heaven, Aguirre: Wrath Of God, and Fat City in 35mm revivals.

In light of so many theater closures and the push to DCP, it’s great to see Film Forum do well. I know they are incorporating DCP and I don’t really have an issue with that so long as they continue showing other formats as well.

cmbussmann commented about Cablevision looking to sell Clearview chain on May 14, 2012 at 3:08 pm

Whoever ends up buying the Ziegfeld had better maintain it and keep using it for high-end premieres, first run showings, and revival screenings. They should keep it classy and clean and well-run with ushers, etc. Basically, they shouldn’t change a thing.

cmbussmann commented about Cinema du Parc on May 10, 2012 at 3:51 pm

One of the best movie theaters I ever had the privilege of living near, mainly because of its incredible repertory selection. I attended countless classic screenings here, including a Kurosawa retrospective, a film noir series, Surrealist short films, several new German & French releases, and lots of then-current indies. They ran “Baraka” multiple times and I went each time because a film like that just needs to be seen in a theater.

The place definitely went through some upheaval while I lived there, slowing down on the rep screenings and upping their more contemporary content. Their prices gradually increased as well and considering the three screens were all pretty small, it became less of a deal but for an ardent cinephile like myself, well, nothing could keep me from a 35mm screening of Ikiru.

I moved away from Montreal in 2005 and heard the place had closed. Apparently someone re-opened it, which is great. Cinemas like this are small treasures and I hope this one can keep running indefinitely.

cmbussmann commented about Brooklyn Heights Cinema I & II on May 10, 2012 at 3:32 pm

Apparently, Brooklyn Heights Cinema will be saved. The landlord will be giving them a basement space in the new building. While I will miss the old space, which is charmingly small and quaint, I am glad the Cinema will be able to remain in business and hope the new space will work out for them.

cmbussmann commented about Cinema on Apr 19, 2012 at 7:29 am

I lived down the street from The Cinema for almost two years while in college. It was easily my favorite place to see a movie in Rochester. Second-run, three-dollar double features were the main attraction. As well as the simple Art Deco design, comfy seats, house kittens who sat on your lap, and the fact that I could look down the street, see the Marquee, and decide if I wanted to venture down the block or not. I saw many memorable double bills here, easily ingratiating myself as a regular. The staff were always super-friendly with me and obliging with the free refills.

I haven’t made it back to The Cinema since I left Rochester but I am happy to hear this place is still up-and-running. In two years, it will hit the century mark, perhaps making it the longest running independent movie house in the Northeast? I don’t know for sure but I do know that The Cinema is a treasure and a bargain.

cmbussmann commented about Oneonta Theatre on Apr 19, 2012 at 6:37 am

The Oneonta Theatre, aka The Oneonta 1 & 2, was actually my least favorite of the three Oneonta movie joints available to me growing up. The main auditorium was really nice, with beautiful vaudevillian ornamentation and a huge screen. A little run-down, it had a shabby retro-chic that I admired. But the acoustics of the main room were a huge problem. If you sat under the balcony, the sound was super-compressed, muffled, and difficult to hear. If you sat closer to the screen, the open-air acoustics absorbed most of the dialogue. Sound in the balcony (which was rarely open during my time there) wasn’t much better. That room was great for live theater (The Orpheus troupe performed there often) but was pretty dismal for films.

The second room was built off the balcony and was also pretty pathetic. Super-tiny, it held only 200 people and had two huge support pillars jutting up through the floor into the ceiling, obscuring the view if you didn’t sit dead center. The sound was fine, however, and it was in this room that I first saw “Pulp Fiction,” which was a minor epiphany at the time.

The 1 & 2 stopped showing first-run movies sometime around 2006 and the building has since been completely restored and repurposed as a live event space hosting minor circuit touring bands. I am glad it was saved and restored and think it will live a better life as a concert hall than it did as a movie theater.

cmbussmann commented about Uptown Theatre on Apr 18, 2012 at 12:59 pm

The Uptown is still open, now running as “The New Uptown Theatre” though the only thing new about it is the management and the fact that they occasionally have live performances. I haven’t been there since it re-opened. My memories of The Uptown was that it was basically a dump, the kind where you could see a second-run film for pretty cheap, which for me was a the draw. I didn’t care that the seats were old and uncomfortable, that the popcorn was often stale, and picture slightly blurry as The Uptown came as close to a grindhouse aesthetic as I could find in Upstate NY at the time. You could go to the diner, bowl two games, and still see a movie there for less than the cost of seeing a similar film elsewhere. It was that cheap, so of course it was imperfect. The managers were totally cool too, allowing the occasional sneaked food or drink. I think we ate a pizza in there once.

I never get around to Utica much anymore. But if I did, I would definitely revisit The Uptown. I’m curious to see what they’ve done to the joint.

cmbussmann commented about Cine 10 on Apr 16, 2012 at 12:36 pm

This place wasn’t great but I have two strong memories from attending films here as a teenager. One was seeing “Casino” with my Father and the theater actually booked an intermission (as in they deliberately cut the film at roughly the 90 min mark, raised the lights, and had an attendant come in and yell “intermission”) so my Father and I just went outside and stood in the sun for 10 minutes. The other memory was skateboarding in the parking lot with my friends and being chased off by security, which meant we missed our showtime. Don’t think we actually saw a movie that day.