Cable Car Cinema & Cafe

204 S. Main Street,
Providence, RI 02903

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Cable Car Cinema

Operating since October 30, 1976, known as a very comfortable place to see arthouse fare, the Cable Car Cinema has couches and other comfy chairs to sit in. Before shows begin, the theater usually has performers (such as singers) on stage to entertain the audience. The Cable Car Cinema & Cafe is set to close on May 27, 2018.

Contributed by Cathy Novick

Recent comments (view all 32 comments)

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on June 25, 2010 at 11:37 am

Plans for the creation of this cinema in 1976, as reported in Boxoffice magazine, March 8, 1976:
View link

johndereszewski on June 25, 2010 at 7:12 pm

Gerald, I have spent the better part of the day perusing the fascinating comments that you have submitted regarding the past and current movie houses of (mostly) Rhode Island. While I will probably never visit most of these places – though I did spend a weekend in Woonsocket many years ago and have visited Newport on several occasions – your vivid descriptions – and vintage pictures – of the old movie palaces and the communities they served was most enjoyable. It also revived memories of my own early cinematic experiences when growing up in Greenpoint Brooklyn.

This is one of the reasons why this is such a wonderful site.

Keep up the good work!

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on June 26, 2010 at 5:48 am

Thank you. I have been trying for several years to post here everything of relevance I can find about RI area theatres…though I ad a bit about theatres elsewhere.

TLSLOEWS on June 30, 2010 at 10:02 pm

Sounds like my kind of place maybe not a “MOVIE PALACE” but cool in another way.Also it has a great name and location.

stranddan on October 8, 2013 at 11:25 am

Moved from RI to CT ten years ago, so have not seen the Cable Car since then. I did patronize it often through the years, even though I believed those couches just might be unsanitary! Almost invariably, the film was interrupted by some sort of projection difficulty. But it was a fun place, even lunching outside.

kzirkel on April 23, 2014 at 10:45 am

Here’s a nice history of the Cable Car Cinema. Originally the building was a truck garage of a moving company. The name comes from “a classic cable car that was left behind”. The cafe was added around 1989.

Chris1982 on November 2, 2014 at 5:37 pm

Opened on October 30, 1976.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on April 27, 2018 at 4:56 am

After 41 years of operation, the Cable Car Cinema is now set to close for good on May 27, 2018.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on June 8, 2018 at 10:21 am

My first visit to the Cable Car Cinema was on February 2, 1977, about three months after it had opened. I noted to myself: “A cold Groundhog’s Day. Tonight I saw "Le Secret” at a very cold Cable Car Cinema, the one with the couches, on South Main Street.“ (I remember that French film as being very good.)

davidcoppock on June 8, 2018 at 10:42 am

Is the cinema and cafe in a cable car?

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