Paradise Theatre

810 Fourth Avenue,
Sunset Park,
Brooklyn, NY 11232

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Dominick
Dominick on June 22, 2013 at 6:41 pm

My mother began sending me to the Paradise with my older sisters on Saturday mornings in 1955 when I was five years old. This bought her a few hours of peace. The place was always packed with kids whose mothers had the same idea as mine. She would give me just enough for the 25 cent admission and a five-cent bag of potato chips. The kids used to squirt mustard on the side of the bag and use it as dip for their chips. The chips were “Treat” potato chips. The bag was made of glassine paper. An older man named “George” ran the concession. Ice cream cones cost ten cents. The first film I ever saw was at the Paradise. It was the horror film “Tarantula”, about a giant spider. I was afraid of the dark for a long time after that. Despite this, my mother still sent me with my sisters every Saturday morning for more scary films like “The fifty Foot Woman”, and The Colossal Man". It was a strange way to spend my most imaginative years. I remember watching my sleeping grandfather turn into the Werewolf right before my eyes. I flew out of the room like a rocket. When I saw him again he had turned back into grandpa, but I already knew his secret. Saturdays usually featured two rock and roll films,, or a rock and roll film and a horror film with three cartoons in between. When they demolished the place, I remember walking through the rubble finding strips of old movies. I was probably nine at the time. Years later, when the great italian film “Cinema Paradiso” came out, it reminded me of the Paradise and the kids and the people of the neighborhood it entertained.

vermonter
vermonter on June 15, 2013 at 12:07 pm

My Grandfather was Ciro Paolillo and owned the Paradise. He bought it during the depression and ran it until he sold it in the 1950’s. My Dad Jerry (Ciro) worked then until right before it closed. He met my late mother Lucille Bergonzi there. Jerry is 95 now and still lives in Bay Ridge. I have a picture of the theater. It also had an outdoor theater right next to it too.

BrooklynPat
BrooklynPat on August 7, 2011 at 2:02 pm

I also lived on 4th Ave. between 23rd & 24th Street. When I was very young my mother worked at the Paradise Theatre.

frankie
frankie on June 24, 2010 at 9:51 am

Did you live in the Garden Apartments, or one of the buildings across the street ?

BklynRob
BklynRob on December 17, 2006 at 3:18 am

I lived on 4th Ave. between 23rd & 24th Streets in the late 50’s. I always remembered a movie theater being close to my house but forgot the name. My friends would say that there was always a bowling alley at that site. Now I can see I was right. As a kid I remember walking to the Paradise with my parents,it was only a few blocks away. I must have been 4 or 5 at that time. I have great memories of that neighborhood.

frankie
frankie on December 13, 2006 at 10:33 am

I’ve always wondered if my late parents ever went here, because when I was born, they lived on 28th St. between 3rd & 4th Aves. I know my neighbor across the street from me now on 22nd St. remembers going here, and she’s about 80 !

art
art on February 26, 2006 at 7:29 am

The Paradise Theater was owned by Anthony Paolillo. He sold it and the new owners built the Bowling Alley in its place.

BklynRob
BklynRob on June 25, 2005 at 2:59 pm

As a kid I lived on 4th Ave. and I recall going to a movie theater only a few blocks from my house. I believe it was the Paradise. I remember the bowling alley vividly. I bowled there several times but I could never recall the name of the theater.I saw “Attack of the 50 ft. Woman” there so the place must have closed in the late 50’s.Thanks to this site I can finally put a name to those movie memories.

kennedysmith
kennedysmith on April 9, 2004 at 4:07 am

Does anyone have a photo of the KFC that’s now on the Paradise site?

William
William on November 15, 2003 at 11:03 am

The Paradise Theatre seated 594 people.

RonaldTyburski
RonaldTyburski on January 5, 2003 at 10:37 am

The theater stood on the corner of 28th street and 4th avenue. After the theater was torn down a bowling alley was erected in its place named Paradise Lanes. This too was torn down years later after it suffered a second fire, a little over two years after the first fire that temporarily knocked it out of business around St. Patrick’s Day.