Bow-Tie Cinema Palace 17 and BTX

330 New Park Avenue,
Hartford, CT 06106

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The giant screen in the Odyssey Theater is over five stories tall with a six-track digital sound system powered by 18,000 watts.

All the screens have stadium seating and Dolby Digital sound. The theater is open 365 days a year.

Contributed by Dave Bonan, Ken Roe

Recent comments (view all 17 comments)

joemasher
joemasher on May 6, 2007 at 4:22 am

Bow Tie Cinemas assumed operation of this theater on 11/17/06.

John Fink
John Fink on December 30, 2007 at 6:57 am

Not only the average Joe but the average film student at UHa, I doubt that was they were the problem. If anything you’ll have to start selling drugs on the side to afford the $11 Odyssey admission price and snacks. So I guess according to Joe they’ve added proper masking in the Odyssey, which like the I-Max at Buckland used to project things on the very large screen and it would be like watching a letter box movie on your TV. It the proper ratio but it only fills up part of the screen. Now if they were to convert it to a full I-Max (they used to show “enhanced 35MM prints” with more detail for the larger screen) they could compete with Buckland since I’m sure their screen is larger than the mini-I-Max there (I even argued to National Amusements that I bet the screens 7 and 8 at the Showcase West Springfield were larger than Buckland’s I-Max).

I knew the theater was on the verge of being sold when the operations improved and the prices was lowered, in its final months as Crown the place was spotless (I really haven’t been there much since the Bow Tie take over but things there seem to be the same and I’m glad to hear they have plans to improve Cinema City which I don’t think has ever been improved since it opened 40 years ago). But now with East Hartford out of the picture (also old, but very well run) and Bloomfield, it does make sense to me that they can play films day and date with Criterion and still keep Cinema City open, all without veering into Real Art Ways' type of film.

fred1
fred1 on June 10, 2010 at 7:15 am

With the nearby Cinema City Closes on July 22. The Palace will set aside 5 of its theaters to make The New Cinema City @ the Palace the next day. This will be great, it will have a separate enterance and upscale consession . This will offer the public an better selection . Insted of showing a hollywood blockbuster in 3-4 theaters you will get counter program with fine arthouse and independant features.

John Fink
John Fink on July 25, 2010 at 12:41 am

Cinema City is covered here by the Courant – so far it sounds like they’re doing the right things – I hope it remains and develops into a place for the Hartford film community and they get more involved. Parkville certainly isn’t a bad place to be with Real Art Ways down the street and the annual Hartford International Film Festival (if Bow Tie and the city lent some additional support that festival could grow and increase attendance – which in return would boast Bow Tie’s bottom line in developing a special wing for film goers with taste). Here’s the article on the new theater:

View link

John Fink
John Fink on November 5, 2010 at 9:16 pm

I visited this evening and for now I’ll tell you the Cinema City section consists of part of the left wing – theaters 11, 12, 13, 14, and 15. They have their own concession stand, a few bits of remodeling and more poster cases were added, as were a pictures of the original Cinema City which I think is a nice touch in addition to the Cinema City branding that appears. Cinema City also has a dedicated box office – the box office (although I was there slightly earlier than prime time) seems to be running more efficiently than it was under Crown who would schedule every movie to start between 7 and 8 – a mess on weekends. I do have a legit complaint that I’ve voiced to corporate first – I wouldn’t want to be accused of pulling a Tomas Kent or anything.

Taxi
Taxi on November 8, 2010 at 6:31 pm

John, did you ever get a response? BTW I like reading your comments, always very incisive.

tom

John Fink
John Fink on November 14, 2010 at 10:27 am

I got a very quick response from Joe (next day) – and passes in the mail. What happened (a projection issue) could have happened at any theatre, before digital alleviating many common projection problems I counted National Amusements and Dipson Theatres (Western NY) as the best in the country for 35MM projection and even they had the occasional problem screening. There is one theatre I regularly comment on because for the past 10 years they’ve been providing poor projection at first run prices. The Palace is one that I don’t know that well, and secondly I doubt it’s the norm – I had been here twice before under Bow Tie and didn’t have any issues.

Despite the higher ticket prices and no student rate which I think is a shame with the colleges in the area including UHa which has an excellent Cinema Studies program, things look to have improved especially with the addition of Cinema City at the Palace, an additional screen for art/indie film makes me happy to see. (Film culture in Hartford is alive and well with the announced addition of a new Cinema Grill and with the growth in attendance at Hartford International Film Festival, which I was in town to screen my film at)

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on November 4, 2013 at 7:34 pm

The Palace was designed for Crown Cinema Corporation by Port Washington, New York, architect James Thomas Martino. The City of Hartford requested the rather traditional movie palace facade, a departure from the more adventurous designs Martino usually did for Crown. The theater had a total of 3,611 seats.

ImaxGeek
ImaxGeek on May 30, 2016 at 7:35 pm

Does anyone have any information on the Odyssey Theater. I think was is a 8/70 theater. Is there raked seating? I think the Odyssey Theater is now a BTX theater.

John Fink
John Fink on May 30, 2016 at 9:24 pm

The Odyssey Theater was a purpose built large screen format screen with stadium seating sight-lines quite comparable to legacy IMAX and big curved screen. I’m sure that hasn’t changed with the digital upgrade – I can only speak for it when they were showing “enhanced 35MM” in the Crown days but the sound and presentation was quite good although like IMAX the screen didn’t have masking.

(This screen is much larger than the mini-IMAX National Amusements opened at Buckland Hills – despite opening with 15/70MM they sandwiched a slightly larger screen into a 250 seat, two story room — the was of course the beginning of the “lie-max” era!)

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