Showing 10 comments
Oops! I stand corrected. Aaron S. is correct. It opened in ‘82, and closed in '92, not '83 & '93, as I had saud in my previous post.
This was a very nice theatre. The first movie I saw there was “Nightmare on Elm Street”. It had a big auditorum for showing the more popular “hit” movie, and two smaller screens for less popular films. It was a “cozy” place. When it went into “second runs”, and the rest of the mall started to shutter, I knew the end was coming. I tried “ripping off” the logo on one of the interior walls (it was aluminum, and it contained silouttes of 4 trees, no detail, just eliptical looking trees with trunks). I liked it, but I broke it, and cut up my fingers in the process. Today, a church uses the space, and although the entire building wasn’t completely torn down, the vast majority of it was taken down, and rebuilt. It’s a real nice looking church, I must say. This was my favourite cineplex during the time it was around (1983-1993). Today, in addition to the church, the mall has an A.J. Wright, a K-Mart, and an Old Country Buffet. It’s doing pretty good.
This was the “coolest” theatre I was ever in. I loved the “Sputnik atom” margue sign. You saw that thing for miles. My girlfriend and I were tossed out of this theatre when we went to see “Christine”. She decided to throw two huge buckets of popcorn (and they were huge) all over the people seated in front of, and behind us “just for the hell of it”. I went back the next day, by myself, to see the rest of the movie.
Saw “Beverly Hills Cop” here in 1984. I remember my friend and I were doing “brake torches” with his ‘74 Nova in the parking lot afterwards. That is until Hillside’s finest showed up ,and wrote a few tickets out. That was the only time I was in this theatre. We used to go to the nearby “Hillside theatre”. It was “cooler looking” inside and out to us.
This cineplex opened around 1995, if my memory serves me correctly. It was around the same time the Quarry shopping center opened. I believe the first movie we saw there was “Disclosure”. This was a beautiful cineplex when it opened. My wife and I used to drive from the North end of Berwyn (several miles away) just to see movies here. We moved to Hodgkins in 2003 We’re within walking distance of the theatre now. Sadly, the theatre looks like it’s from the mid ‘90’s (which wasn’t a good era for commercial architecture, in my opinion). The facade, and interior look dated, and they don’t use the margue on East ave. anymore (except to advertise food and drink specials). Overall, it’s still a nice place, but not as nice as some of the more modern theatres farther west of it.
This has to be the worst theatre I have ever been in, and I was in the Berwyn near it’s end, so you know this one had to be bad. North Riverside was a beautiful mall when it opened in 1975. At that time, the cineplex did not exist. A “remodelling” (I use that term very loosely)of the mall in 1989 completely ruined it. It looked like a reject soundstage from “Miami Vice” (which was already out of style by this time, seeing as the show went off the air in ‘89). The theatres looked flimsy and cheap. Uncomfortable seats. The projection, and sound was mediocre at best. My wife and I saw a few movies there, but when we were accosted by some “city teens”, and my wallet was almost lifted (thankfully, the punk was a poor pick-pocket), we said forget this place. Another suburban theatre goes to Hell. And this was when it was still owned by Cineplex-Odeon! We haven’t been back in 10 years, and we will never go back. I don’t care who owns it.
I took my then girlfriend (and now my wife) here on our first date, May 11, 1991. We saw “FX 2”. Looking back, everything from that night is now gone (except for my wife). Obviously, the theatre, the restaurant we went to before the movie(The Ristorante Capri, in Berwyn, burned down in 1993), Snowflake drive-in ice cream (which was where we went after the movie, closed and was torn down in 2007), My ‘83 New Yorker (went to the big parking lot in the sky), and my virginity : )
If any theatre can be the epitome of “coming back from the dead”, the LaGrange is that theatre. I wouldn’t have sold you chances for a tired dime a few years ago that it would still be standing today, but I’m glad I was wrong. They have done, and continue to do, a wonderful job of making this theatre a fine place to see a movie.
I remember this theatre had good popcorn, and decent sound. The last movie my wife and I saw there was “Scream”, back in 1997. It was still a first run theatre at that time, and I remember getting into a shouting match with several noisy and obnoxious teens & twenty-somethings, because they were talking, laughing, jumping over the seats, and doing other “ghetto garbage”. No usher could be found. I was sad, because the “city” had finally found this nice cineplex, and I knew it wouldn’t be long before it fell. Passed by it today, and it’s still vacant with no renter in site.
I remember going to the Haunted Trails miniature golf course in the mid-70’s and looking over the fence at the movie being shown. It was perfect viewing, as the screen faced Southwest, directly facing the Northeastern section of the course. I also remember that huge sign quite well. You could see it from blocks away, that’s for sure.