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The first movie I ever saw here was a double bill of the Marx Brothers – A Day at the Races and A Night at the Opera in July 1976. It was for my birthday. This became my favourite city cinema as it was comfortable, three good-sized screens and a range of movies. Among the movies that screened here (that I recall) were Bugsy Malone, Saturday Night Fever, All Night Long, Ordinary People, Victor / Victoria, The Elephant Man, Black Rain, The Jerk and The Breakfast Club.
This is the cinema that gave birth to my love of movies. The first movie I ever saw here was Chitty Chitty Bang Bang in August 1969. It then became our local, as it was four blocks away from our house. I then spent almost every Saturday of my youth here.
It had a great wide stalls area, with a slight slope. The hardly used dress circle was very large, but I only ever recall it being used a few times.
An old bloke named Charlie who was the head usher collected tickets and always treated the regular kids with a great deal of fun.
In 1972, I recall seeing Bedknobs and Broomsticks here.
I remember in 1974, seeing a movie here cost 95 cents.
The next year, it went up to $1.05.
Among the many movies seen here were The Taking of Pelham 123 (1974), Three Days of the Condor (1975), Funny Lady (1975), Tommy (1975), Towering Inferno (1975), Silver Streak (1976), The Deep (1976) and Star Wars (1977).
A very sad day when they closed this cinema down.
If I remember rightly, the Mayfair is where the play Crown Matrimonal with June Salter about Edward’s abdication played for a while in 1977/78. It was a big hit and had played at the Seymour Centre before moving into the city to play at the Mayfair.
I remember the last movie I ever saw featured on the marquee here was the surf title Summer City, starring a very young Mel Gibson. Late 1977 / early 1978. The Arcade next door had the soundtrack specialists Ava and Susans for years as well.
I remember seeing a double feature of Jaws and Jaws 2 at this beautiful cinema in September 1981. It had such lush blue/purple interiors and I always felt it was out of place in this more run down end of town. I also remember seeing The Great Waldo Pepper here in 1975. Good memories.
I am indeed the “local student” referred to here who waged the campaign to save this beautiful cinema. The North Shore Times newspaper supported the ill-fated attempt to save what was a beautiful 1930s building, which has been replaced twice by ugly office slabs since the Kings was demolished. Many great afternoons for a young kid in the 1970s were spent inside this building. Just looking at this picture brings back all the memories.