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Unfortunately, Smilebox is NOT Cinerama
The Marcus Loew plaque from this theater is currently up for auction on ebay, item number 271204780383. the plaque apparently survived the transformation of the building into CBS Studio 60.
Unfortunately, the only ‘art’ house in Knoxville still doesn’t show films in 3D. I had to travel to Asheville to see Wim Wenders' beautiful “Pina” in 3D. Regal’s excuse was that it was “too expensive” to install 3D technology in this theater. That response from Regal, which has its world headquarters in this town.
I also saw the film in its initial run at the Criterion in New York. The image and sound quality were excellent, although the screen used was the regular CinemaScope one, barely curved. There was considerable controversy over the use of colored filters during the musical numbers, which served to remove these numbers from the ‘reality’ of the dramatic action. I didn’t know the film moved to the Rivoli, which had the original curved-screen Todd-AO projection setup from the screening of Oklahoma.
I was trying to recall what movies I saw at the Triboro, and could remember Dangerous When Wet (Esther Williams), The Caddy (Martin and Lewis), War of the Worlds (with great surround stereo sound), Fort Ti (in 3D) and, perhaps, Becket. I know I saw at least one vaudeville show when Loew’s tried to revive live entertainment in the late 50s. The theater was fantastic, always a treat to visit, even though it was a bus ride from my neighborhood in Jackson Heights.
Techman, I watched many movies at the Jackson and Colony as well as the three mentioned. If I recall, I saw both Kiss Me, Kate, and Dial M for Murder in 3D at the Jackson. The Colony screened more ‘art’ fare; I know I saw at least one Ingmar Bergman film there (in a mostly empty room). Used to eat lunch next door at the Woolworth’s.
The Earle was the premier “art” movie house in Jackson Heights, always showing the finest independent and foreign movies. Here’s a list of what I remember seeing there: Hiroshima Mon Amour, And God Created Woman, Medium Cool, Alfie. And God .. featured Brigitte Bardot and you had to be at least 16 to see it. I lied about my age and the eager ticket seller let me in. Not a bad movie, actually, very daring for its time. The theater was a beautiful deco piece and very well maintained. That all changed when it turned into a porn venue; it was probably the raunchiest movie house in the neighborhood, the Fair and Polk running close.
As kids, we used to eat in the great Kosher deli next door, then see a movie at the Jackson. Here’s a list of movies I saw there: The Long Gray Line, Kiss Me, Kate (3D), Dial M for Murder (3D), Ben Hur, Vertigo, Porgy and Bess, Ship of Fools, Judgment at Nuremburg, Freud.
I grew up in Jackson Heights in the 1950s and saw a few movies at the Colony, including High Noon, Disney’s The Living Desert, and at least one of Ingmar Bergman’s films. The Colony was one of two “art houses” in the neighborhood, the other being the Earle on 74th Street.
went to the Polk many times as a kid. They had a good Saturday kid’s matinee, as did the Boulevard and Fair. I think the last time I went to the Polk, it had already been converted into a porn house, the third theater in Jackson Heights so transformed (along with the Earle and Fair). On the next block, also on 37th Avenue, was the fabulous Dragon Seed Restaurant, which had one of the first stereophonic music systems in the city. On Mondays, when the restaurant was closed, the owner opened it to neighborhood audiophiles. Great neighborhood!
The PBS American Masters documentary on Elia Kazan (mentioned above) was shown again tonight. There was a nice exterior view of the Commodore marquee.
Here’s a link to a remembrance and photo of Loew’s State Memphis: http://www.memphistechhigh.com/memphis/memories/state.html
Here’s a remembrance and photo of Loew’s Palace in Memphis:
The Theatre Historical Society in Elmhurst, IL, already has one of these.
I think the Pike may have been the little theater next to (and connected to) the Capri. I was there on the day workers ripped off the old silver screen. The buildings are still intact and have been remodeled into an art gallery.
The 1959 photo has been moved to the following website:
There are likely thousands of photo links on this site that no longer work. Has anyone found a solution? Can’t photos be uploaded to this site and stored here?
Here’s a photo of the Loew’s Bay Ridge c.1959
Does anyone remember seeing Hitchcock’s Dial M for Murder at the Jackson in the 1950s? If so, was it screened in 2D or 3D? I seem to recall it being shown in 3D ..
There was a nice video of the marquee of the Bama in the Joan Baez documentary that aired last night on PBS.
This item has been sold.
This item has been relisted at a lower price.
The item didn’t sell on eBay but is still available. Anyone interested can contact me at
There are great Technicolor views of the Chicago in these 1948 short documentaries:
It’s not a great theater, but it’s very nice and hasn’t been overrestored, so you still feel like you’re in an old theater. The current projection/sound system is first rate; it’s a pleasure to see movies there.