Movie City 5

US Route 1 and Gill Lane,
Woodbridge, NJ 07095

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The Grant Movie City 5 was located in the rear of the old S.Kleins on the Square (Toys R Us) building located on US Route 1 and Gill Lane in Woodbridge, NJ across from the Woodbridge Center mall.

Originally opened as a first run house in the early 80’s, by the 90’s it became a discount second-run house. Towards the end of its day’s, to capitalize on the growing South Asian community in the area, the theater began showing Bollywood films in additional to its regular fare. The theater closed sometime in 2003.

Contributed by Jack Stachowicz

Recent comments (view all 12 comments)

JerseyGeorge
JerseyGeorge on February 4, 2006 at 3:28 pm

There was an affiliated theater, also named Movie City, on the northbound side of Rt. 18 in East Brunswick during the late ‘70s and '80s. Multi-screen, second-run.

BarryMonush
BarryMonush on February 9, 2007 at 3:59 pm

I don’t ever remember this being a twin theater. My recollection was that it opened as a 5-screen theatre, just like Movie City 5 on Route 18. I’m pretty sure it was launched sometime in 1980. It was never a prime cinema and only got dumpier by the time it finally closed in the late 1990s.

burban
burban on March 9, 2007 at 1:37 pm

I worked at this theater from 1991-1997 and during that time it was always a 2nd run theater and had been for some time prior so it’s highly possible that it split the 80s by starting out as 1st run but going to 2nd run later on. Indeed it was a bit of a dumpy theater, but for less than $3 a ticket (both adult and children) you couldn’t expect much. It was part of the Movie City chain with 2 locations in East Brunswick (one on Route 18 and the other tucked away in the Brusnwick Square Mall), Edison on Oak Tree Road and another small theater in Tenafly, NJ. All locations were sold to Clearview in the late 90s with the exception of the Brunswick Square theater which was renovated by the owners and turned into MegaMovies. Movie City 5 in Woodbridge did occasionally show a ‘Bollywood’ movie, usually on a Saturday or Sunday late morning before the theater was open to the general public. Otherwise it was a strictly 2nd run theater until it closed in ‘03.

markp
markp on January 20, 2008 at 11:46 pm

With respect to Joe Masher, I remember when the projectionist union tried to get work here in 1980 when the place first opened, and it was 5 screens from day 1.

RkoRoxy
RkoRoxy on April 15, 2008 at 3:55 am

Movie City 5 opened as a 5 plex. The owners had the option of building the theatre on the Rt 1 side, but for some reason opted to build in the rear of the old S. Klein’s building. Theatres 3, 4 & 5 used a periscope system to get the projected image to the screen. So when you were in the booth, the projector shot into a mirror, which projected to a mirror below and then out the port. The booth was higher than the theatre’s ceilings. I remember seeing “Modern Problems” in #4 there not long after the theatre opened. From what I remembered, each theatre’s doors were different colors which corresponded to colored lines outside the building. These were the cueing lines for the next show. Up until recent, the overhead heaters were still in place over the lines. The theatre has currently been converted to a health club after years sitting closed. Clearview Cinemas took over the business somewhere in the late 90’s and ultimately closed the theatre.

voluntaryexiledtowoodbridge
voluntaryexiledtowoodbridge on September 1, 2008 at 3:50 pm

I also worked at Movie City, both in East Brunswick and later Woodbridge. I started in 1982 in EB as an usher, later promoted to projectionist. Due to several personal circumstances at the time (teenage drama mostly) I requested a move to Woodbridge where I worked till resigning (a now famous incident still discussed by a group of us) in the summer of 1985.

Although the place sucked, the friendships formed there have lasted a lifetime. I’m even more fortunate than most, as having worked in both theatres, I have a group of friends from each.

shany94
shany94 on September 30, 2009 at 5:24 am

I remember this place – it wasn’t the cleanest or most modern, but it was cheap and accessible. I think the last film I saw here was “Sleepy Hollow”, I also recall seeing “The Shadow” and “The Phantom” at Movie City

joker
joker on June 8, 2010 at 7:58 pm

i remember this theater it was a big theater i went there when i was a kid.

pernicev
pernicev on February 25, 2011 at 7:35 pm

I too worked part time at Movie City 5 as a teenager in 1986. I was an OK job at the time. I got to see a lot of movies as an usher, but we were forbidden to sit down.
From what I recall the general manager was a rather cut-throat businessman and was the main reason my employment only last a few short months.

unclejay73
unclejay73 on April 13, 2012 at 2:32 pm

I started going to Movie City 5 in the summer of 1987. I was 14 years old. It was a first-run theater then, and the first film I saw there was “RoboCop”. I also saw “Jaws: The Revenge” and “Stakeout” that summer as well there. I didn’t particularly care for the theater, the theaters were a bit small, and there was one theater that was always a bit out of focus (and was the theater I always wound up in, go figure). I do remember going back there in January ‘89 for “Deep Star Six” as it was the only theater near me playing that film, and I believe it became a cheap second-run theater not long after that, I went a few more times, particularly in '97 when I caught “The Fifth Element”, “Chasing Amy”, “Con Air”…I think it was $2.50 a ticket.

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