Manos Theater

576 Main Street,
Uniontown, PA 15401

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Yeti on July 18, 2013 at 11:22 am

About 30-35 years ago I was friends with a boy whose father was a manager with the Manos company and his mom would clean the Manos in the mornings. I received a real treat when I stayed over his house one night. We were able to join his mom while she cleaned. I ate the leftover popcorn, drank a ton of soda and got to explore the whole theater. Downstairs between the lounges was a small room that had a bank-type vault in it FULL of movie posters. I guess when the movies were over they would just roll them up and throw them in. To the right of the lounges was a door that led to what I was told was the “bomb shelter.” It contained some mechanical equipment, the original 1940’s backup generator and had a super thick wood door (the kind that you locked by placing a bar across it) which led to a long tunnel like hallway then to stairs which led out the back of the building. Given that the place was built during WWII I kind of believe the story. I wonder what they did with all of those posters?

DougS on August 8, 2012 at 3:13 pm

The Manos Theatre meant a lot to me when I was teenager because of the first-rate movies I saw there.

Among my favorites: “An Unmarried Woman,” “Coming Home,” “Who is Killing the Great Chefs of Europe?,” “The Muppet Movie,” “Dressed to Kill,” “Body Heat” and “The Dead Zone.”

It was there, too, that I saw the huge flop “Heaven’s Gate” in early 1981, after the movie had been withdrawn and re-edited from 219 minutes to 145 minutes. The Manos was one of the few theaters in Western Pennsylvania that took a chance on booking it.

Even the bad movies bring back good memories!

janlcc on June 26, 2011 at 2:21 am

From the Brownsville Telegraph, August, 1941: “Area movie-goers are invited to visit the area’s newest movie theater. The grand opening of the Manos Theatre, which calls itself Uniontown’s newest and finest theater, is slated for Wednesday evening, August 20, 1941. The movie house’s operators boast that it is the most modern theater in western Pennsylvania. It is scientifically built to show sound pictures, and of particular interest to customers during these dog days of August, it is air conditioned! The opening screen attraction will feature Vivien Leigh and Laurence Olivier in "That Hamilton Woman,” showing continuously from noon until 11:30 p.m."

CSWalczak on November 27, 2010 at 2:36 am

I cannot help but wonder if that notoriously bad movie, “Manos, the Hands of Fate” ever played at the Manos. The film’s story line involved a religious cult.

csepe on November 27, 2010 at 2:21 am

This was another gigantic theater in southwestern Pennsylvania (there were two others — the State, also in Uniontown, bigger and grander, and directly across the street from this building; and the Hollywood in California, Pa., with 999 seats).
This theater had the appearance of being about as long as a football field when you entered the doors to the actual auditorium. And down at the left of the screen, just above an exit door, was a rather large clock that glowed blue at all times. We used to joke it was sending out radioactive waves into our eyes.
The basement had two very large lounges, mens' and womens,‘ and as late as the 1980s were still kept very clean and stylish. The building ceased as a theater in the late 1980s and became a church of sorts for some vagabond religious cult before finally being demolished. It is now a large parking lot.
I saw quite a few films here while I was growing up, including REDS on the day after Christmas, 1981, during which a blizzard began outside and we all barely got home. Plus, if memory serves, the heat was either off or low, making us really feel the experience of that revolutionary Russian winter. That was an experience, but not half as fun as THE BEST LITTLE WHOREHOUSE IN TEXAS later that summer.

kencmcintyre on August 12, 2009 at 3:05 am

Here is a November 1958 ad from the Uniontown Morning Herald:

jflundy on February 2, 2008 at 6:48 pm

There were Manos Theaters in Grafton WV and Elkins WV both closed, and a multiplex is open in Buckhannon WV run by the grandson of the chain founder.