Bow-Tie Cinemas Harbour 9

2474 Solomons Island Road,
Annapolis, MD 21401

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Ftopel on August 10, 2017 at 7:02 pm

Odd, when I visited sound was phenomenal in 5 and 6. Maybe a blown out speaker or bad DCP.

JodarMovieFan on August 7, 2017 at 11:49 am

I forgot to post I saw ‘La La Land’ back in Jan or Feb. It was not as good as I had hoped. The sound was underwhelming in #4 as if it were muffle. Disappointing. Story was not engaginig but Gosling and Emma Stone make a pretty couple.

Upgrades like seats are nice, but they do need to do something with the sound…larger curved screens? :) I suspect prices will go up, too.

Ftopel on July 19, 2017 at 9:35 pm

The conversion to recliners is already halfway underway. Theaters 6-9 are closed. 1-5 remain old school… For now. Anyone in Annapolis planning a visit before it goes all modern?

Ftopel on May 10, 2017 at 1:24 am

Added photos of my visit

Ftopel on May 6, 2017 at 4:16 pm

I worked at Harbor 9 from 1994-1997 when it was Apex and later Crown. Visiting the theater after 20 years, I am very impressed with how Bow Tie has up kept and improved the theater.

It seems like all theaters have digital surround sound now, at least through 5 and 6. Before i was only 1-3 that had surround, and only 1-2 went digital in the late ‘90s. New seats have also altered the layout of some theaters. 5 got rid of the aisles, while 2 added an aisle down the center. There must be some new screens too because they’ve certainly fixed 5’s aperture plate issues (if digital even still uses aperture plates). The new Jack & Harry’s popcorn is way better than what we used to pop too.

Thank you, Bow-Tie, for keeping the Harbor 9 theater such a great place to see movies. I still feel the spirit of Annapolis summer blockbusters, winter snow respites and Friday night openings there.

Ftopel on April 24, 2016 at 8:11 pm

My old stomping grounds, where I worked in high school. It was a much celebrated improvement over the then-4 screen Annapolis mall theater. I remember each of the screens intimately, including the problematic #5. Seems it’s been fixed with the switch to digital in 2010?

They never went to stadium seating, did that? If it’s still sloped auditorium style I’ll have to go back and visit.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on August 18, 2015 at 11:05 pm

Like the other multiplex in Annapolis, the Harbour 9 was designed by architect James Thomas Martino.

JodarMovieFan on July 23, 2013 at 12:11 am

I saw ‘The Heat’ with Sandra, not WITH Sandra..she was IN the movie. #6 was practically sold out on this matinee Friday. Surrounds were good especially with me sitting all the way in the back. The ticket person, after swiping my BowTie frequent moviegoer card, didn’t even tell me how many points I had..bad bad bad.

JodarMovieFan on December 18, 2012 at 8:38 pm

I saw ‘The Life of Pi’ in 3D in #7 with a decent crowd, today. I missed the large screen presentations when the movie first came out but thoroughly enjoyed this moving fantasy tale. The CGI effects are well done, as is the whole look of the movie. I can see Oscar nominations for this movie. The bottom part of the screen looked as if it was fluttering or not properly affixed to the wall, but it was not a constant detraction.

JodarMovieFan on October 27, 2012 at 11:42 am

I saw ‘The Master’ here during the first week in DP. For whatever reason, staff were handwriting numbers of our club cards and swiping them.

Given the much ballyhooed celebration of this movie being in 70mm, I wanted to see it first in a different format to compare it to 70mm. After watching it, I didn’t feel compelled to want to see it, again. Sure, the acting by Phillip Hoffman and Joaquin Phoenix are great. They are shoo-ins for award nominations for sure, but the subject matter questions why would one bother to go to the expense of filming in 65mm.

All I gathered from the film is Joaquin Phoenix character has this bent up anger/rage sexual repression in him where he tries to deal with it with the help of a Ron Hubbard-like figure played by Phillip Hoffman. He doesn’t get his answers until he sleeps with a bar pick up at the end of the movie. The end.

DotTheEyes on July 4, 2012 at 8:38 pm

To be honest, as a general rule, I prefer the projection here to the mall location. Tends to be brighter, crisper, etc. The sound is another story, though not -bad-. It is, I admit, a bit of a groaner if the movie you’re seeing is in auditoriums number seven, eight, or nine. Particularly if it’s an action-science-fiction-spectacle type film (such as The Avengers or Prometheus), and you’re catching up with it a month or so later.

JodarMovieFan on May 3, 2012 at 12:27 am

My friend and I saw ‘Lockout’ in #7. A motorized curtain cropped the smallish screen even smaller, for scope, which drew an outburst from a guy in the audience.

Even with the 7.1 upgrade, the lack of subwoofer depth demanded by trailers of upcoming blockbuster films, should require another look at further upgrades. When they played the trailer for ‘Battleship,’ it sounded very tinny compared to the booom booom boooom experience in the THX cert auditorium 1 at the Annapolis Mall.

JodarMovieFan on February 3, 2012 at 8:41 pm

I have been to several movies at the Harbour 9 in recent weeks and have seen ‘Iron Lady’ in #5, ‘Albert Nobbs’ in #7, ‘Hugo’ and ‘Immortals’ both in 3D. Other then the 3D films, the others seem to be projected with brighter light then at the mall theaters.

With the large number of elderly that frequent the afternoon shows, staff should be more attentive to their needs. An elderly couple came in during previews and could not see where they were going. An usher would have been welcome, but all they do are collect tickets at the top of the escalator. Curiously enough, there are no carpet/runway type lights either to illuminate the floor, at least in #5.

On a concession note, the large soft drink size seems to have been downsized. What a bummer, to get ‘less’ for that $4.75 :P

JodarMovieFan on August 20, 2011 at 11:21 am

My friend and I saw ‘Crazy Stupid Love,’ in #6, which was somewhat engaging although not as funny as I had hoped. This is the first time visiting this venue since the all digital projection (Dolby) roll out. The projection was digital excellent. Unfortunately, the least compared to the Mall, was lacking from the sound of the format trailer and movie soundtrack. Also, management should consider better sound deadening material, as I could hear the ‘Cowboys and Aliens’ booming soundtrack next door throughout the movie.

As for their movie card system, it needs to be better. I do not like the fact you have to rely on the ticket booth to tell you what your points are. It seems that my points are way off from the many times I have visited here and at the Mall.

JodarMovieFan on July 4, 2011 at 7:20 pm

It appears that this venus has gone all digital projection now.

JodarMovieFan on August 4, 2010 at 11:52 am

I saw Airbender in 3D in the newly 3D equipped #5. Film was not very good. The 3D aspect looked more like an after thought. There were no gotcha or aha 3D tricks, not even a pointed spear or arrow. Unless they showed the 3D trailer at the beginning, which I missed, there wasn’t a 3D trailer. The stereo surrounds were good sitting in the back. Hopefully, they will book something more worthy of the format in the future.

jgrow on January 5, 2010 at 9:58 pm

I was projectionist here when it was opened by K/B Theaters. This theater opened in 1991 and had a Norelco 70mm in house #1 and a Simplex 35/70 in house #2. Although we never advertised it we “borrowed” a 70mm print of “Terminator 2 Judgement Day” from the “K/B Cinema” and ran it in house #1 for a week. That was the only time 70mm was ever run there.

JodarMovieFan on September 12, 2009 at 12:11 am

I caught “My One and Only” in #1 on a matinee showing this past week. Presentation was very good. They played a Stomp themed Dolby Digital trailer which didn’t really show off the theater’s sound capabilities other than being loud. I had no clue the movie was a biopic of sorts and thought the performances all around were quite good. Unfortunately, I must’ve been tired as I fell asleep between the 1/3 and ½ of the movie. I doubt I will see it again in theaters and will wait for it to come on cable before I see it again. :)

JodarMovieFan on July 26, 2009 at 1:59 pm

I saw ‘Up’ in #5 in Dolby Digital. Unfortunately, it was not in 3D as it just left the Mall 11 before I had a chance to see it. The movie, itself, was engaging despite the lack of 3D. There are some decidedly adult moments 1/3 through the movie that I thought would be upsetting to some. Overall, the film was a delight and another Pixar hit. Surrounds were evident when needed to be and as the film was not digital, there were noticeable scratches screen hiccups towards the end.

JodarMovieFan on July 15, 2009 at 4:20 pm

My friend and I saw “Public Enemies” starring Johnny Depp in #4. They played a Dolby Digital EX trailer, a new one, or at least different from the one I remember at the Senator way back in ‘99. Unfortunately, I didn’t notice rear theater sound fx (in the trailer) to showcase the EX part sitting pretty close to the front. The film, overall was good, with decent sound.

JodarMovieFan on December 27, 2008 at 10:51 pm

Tonight was not a good night at the Harbour 9, particularly the Frost/Nixon showing in #6. The picture was shown outside of the screen and the surround sound went out towards the end. I would have complained but the movie was somewhat of a schnoozer anyway.

The Christmas day showing of Doubt in #2 was better..perfect, in fact. :) I hope this isn’t a sign of things to come with uneven showmanship.

JodarMovieFan on February 4, 2008 at 6:05 pm

Here is the link that states that #1 and #2 were 70mm equipped:


JodarMovieFan on January 20, 2008 at 1:07 am

I’m not 100% sure about this, but I believe this place opened in the mid 80s? I’m thinking ‘87 or so and it was under the APEX or KB name. My friend and I attended a movie on opening weekend, but I can’t remember what it was! The theaters are upstairs and are about the same size..I’m guessing 150-250, maybe 300. If you attend on a Thu evening-Saturday, do visit the Amish Market that’s right below the theaters. They have wonderful fresh farm produce and dairy, along with snack foods such as fresh made pretzels (with or without salt or butter) and a variety of freshly baked-on-the-premesis cookies, breads, pies and cakes! Ian says he enjoys Pot Bellys and, yes, their sandwiches are good and reasonably priced, but they only have bottled and canned drinks. I prefer the fountain variety.

When Crown took over, they completed a remodel back in ‘04 or so, which included a refurbished concession stand area and sound systems. I believe they all have digital sound (at least Dolby) that I am aware of. They do play the Dolby Digital trailer the last few times I’ve seen movies here. I read on a website on 70mm capable theaters, that the projector from the old MacArthur supposedly made its way to this venue back in '97 and that auditoriums 1 and 2 were 70mm capable. Unfortunately, I don’t recall this venue ever booking 70mm anything.

BowTie took over in late ‘06 and the programming has remained art house-type fair, which would explain the lack of teens attending this if that were a bad thing? The Mall gets the popular films but this is not always the case. Last year, this place got Dreamgirls as opposed to the Mall, so go figure. BowTie installed new rocker type seats, which are very comfortable. The last film I saw here was Sweeney Todd, in #1, to an almost empty theater but enjoyed the movie and the sound. It was nice to lie down and enjoy the show.

Ken, as far as your post to a link about underaged ticket buying, I’ve seen cashiers at the ticket counter ask for ID to those who look underaged. Maybe on that particular night, someone slipped up but I probably can guess who asked for ID upon entering the theater, too. Correct me if I’m wrong, but a film that is Rated R states that no one under 17 is allowed without a guardian or parent? If thats the case, then the parent legally should have gone to the showing with the kids. Or, maybe he did go with them to buy the tickets then decided not to go to the show thinking that once the kids had been cleared to buy tickets, his presence was not required for the actual show.
I honestly think he has no standing since legally, his child was attempting to watch a movie that legally required a guardian or parent to be with him and his friends.

During my years of frequenting the Mall 11, I’ve had to ask for a refund only one time and that was because they advertised Superman Returns as being in digital projection, yet it was not. I was told that the “key” to the digital projector had expired and that the last show of that movie of the day was on film. The ticket taker tried to explain to me that there was “no difference” between digital projection and film but I was not having it. The Manager was going to give me money back, but I opted for passes because I frequent the place often. If that offended parent had seen the General Manager, I’m sure he would have gotten his money back.