Ridge Cinema

Basking Ridge, NJ 07920

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Another in the long list of Jerry Lewis Cinemas, this one opened in the early-1970’s and closed around 1985.

Contributed by Mark Pusillo

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SPOK
SPOK on January 16, 2011 at 3:47 pm

The Ridge Cinema, which we called the Lyons Mall Jerry Lewis Cinema, was located downhill from Ridge High School in Basking Ridge and was adjacent to the train station. It shared a small strip mall with a Grand Union supermarket. Back then this particular Grand Union was also a small department store.

Over the years I went to the Ridge Cinema numerous times, though I cannot recall all movies I saw there. The film I recall most was a late 1960s or early 1970s re-release of LAWRENCE OF ARABIA (many years before the film’s 1989 restoration and re-release). After years of seeing LAWRENCE OF ARABIA on television it was great to finally see the film on the wide screen.

Alas the last film I saw at the Ridge Cinema was Clint Eastwood’s BRONCO BILLY. As I recall the theater still retained its Jerry Lewis caricature logo, though I do not recall if it was still part of the old chain. It was not too long after BRONCO BILLY that the theater closed. A bank replaced the theater. It was about this same time that the nearby theater in Bernardsville was butchered from a grand single-screen movie house into a series of cramped multiplex auditoriums. The days of the single screen cinema began their multi-decade decline.

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