Harvard Square Theatre

10 Church Street,
Cambridge, MA 02138

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Showing 1 - 25 of 99 comments

rivest266 on May 11, 2013 at 9:48 pm

Also the 1927 ad has been uploaded in the photo section.

rivest266 on May 11, 2013 at 9:47 pm

This reopened as Harvard Square on December 27th, 1961.

PopcornNRoses on March 29, 2013 at 4:54 pm

Stopped by the location on Wednesday night. You can still see inside through the front door and they haven’t done anything with it as yet. I wish Alamo would seize the opportunity and grab this location to come to metro Boston…::sigh::

PopcornNRoses on January 17, 2013 at 5:13 pm

Anyone hear anything about the latest plans for the location yet? Been keeping an eye out but haven’t seen anything yet…

Ron Newman
Ron Newman on July 24, 2012 at 1:44 pm

Boston.com yesterday reported that AMC has sold the Harvard Square Theatre for $6.5 million to Cambridge-based Carpenter & Company, who own the Charles Hotel several blocks away.

“Richard Friedman, the president and chief operating officer of Carpenter & Company, said the company bought the building last week and he expects a plan will be place for the future of the property within two months.” He said that re-using the building as a theater is one of many options that will be considered.

Tinseltoes on July 19, 2012 at 8:14 pm

Renovations described in this 1962 trade article: Boxoffice

orsonwellescinema on July 8, 2012 at 8:54 pm

Hey all;

A bunch of us film critics, cinephiles and whatnot will be gathering at the Border Cafe (near the Harvard Sq theater, on the corner to its right) tonight (Sunday, July 8th) at 8pm .. for a beer and to share some memories of this old place on it’s last day of operation. Feel free to join us!


Ron Newman
Ron Newman on July 6, 2012 at 11:22 pm

Rocky Horror Picture Show (with Full Body Cast) will move to Loews Boston Common, effective August 4. The last shows at Harvard Square will be tomorrow night, July 7, 9:30 pm and 12:30 am.

DirtyWater on June 29, 2012 at 7:57 am

The first time I was at the University Theater was around 1956 when my mother brought me to see the Disney reissue of ‘Song of the South’ – the first real adult movie I saw there was ‘North by Northwest’ around 1959.

Even back then the clocks on either side of the screen almost never worked.

My favorite memories of the theater were in the 70’s when they had the double features that changed every couple of days if not daily.

I remember one gloomy rainy afternoon I was in a depressed state and went to the HST for the double feature – which was ‘Taxi Driver’ and “The Deerhunter'.

Oh I was in great shape after that 4 plus hours.

The last 20 or so years we have put up with the shortcomings of the layout because of the location. I don’t like Boston Common – Fenway is ‘OK’ but still a hike on the T.

Let’s be honest – this closing is more about AMC being bought by the Chinese a couple of months ago – and it is all about the real estate.

I hope the older woman who has sold tickets there for years in the daytime survives as the job kept her alive.

The big winner will be the Somerville Theater but they were doing fine before. Fresh Pond won’t see an uptick because that theater is not subway friendly.

Just a very sad end.

LaConnection on June 21, 2012 at 7:53 pm

Ah, the good old Harvard Square Theater. Double features, rock films like MAGICAL MYSTERY TOUR & THE SONG REMAINS THE SAME, midnight shows….

Surprised it lasted this long under the Loew’s and AMC banners. These chains only care about maximizing profits – not historical preservation or the movie-going pleasures of their neighbors.

Tinseltoes on June 21, 2012 at 3:30 pm

Here are three photos of the University Theatre in a 1935 trade journal:boxofficemagazine

HowardBHaas on June 21, 2012 at 1:23 pm

I enjoyed one movie in the main auditorium here which still gave and old fashioned real movie going experience. There’s no pictures online of the auditorium as it is now, or historic photos of lobby, auditorium, etc. Can somebodyplease now photo the main auditorium?

PopcornNRoses on June 21, 2012 at 11:15 am

The loss of Harvard Square AMC will leave a huge gap in film going for students when they return in the fall. Instead of having a multiplex showing current films within walking distance, they will now have to take the T or drive to the nearest multiplex theaters, which if I’m not mistaken are Fresh Pond, Somerville Theater, Kendall Square, and AMC Boston Common. It leaves the Brattle Theatre and the Harvard Film Archive as the only theaters within walking distance.

With AMC Assembly Hill on the map but not yet under construction (to my knowledge) and not scheduled to open until the late fall of 2013, that leaves the entire upcoming school year devoid of a major chain multiplex that’s only a few minutes away. And Assembly Hill will be more than a “few minutes” away anyway, and you certainly won’t be able to walk there.

And it leaves the RHPS devotees nowhere to go on Saturday nights…:–)

BOOOO AMC – shame on you for closing Harvard Square! Shame Shame SHAME! It wasn’t the best theater, but we loved it all the same…

IanJudge on June 21, 2012 at 6:59 am

It’s sad, and make no bones about who is to blame – it’s AMC. They are cash-starved and sold the building – though it is a profitable location – for a quick paycheck. They have no idea how to operate theaters that are not within their business model (modern multiplexes with 8+ screens) and so this location did not see it’s potential under their ownership. While Loews was by no means perfect, they damned well knew how to maintain and run, and most importantly BOOK smaller theaters in urban areas like this. They would occasionally give the Kendall Sq. a run for their money on wider-release art films, but not AMC – they have NO imagination.

I am sure they merely see this location as part of the same marketplace where their new 12-plex at Assembly Row will go, so they look at it as simply an old location replaced eventually by a new one, but that is a false perception of the marketplace – locals can tell you that they are very distinctly different areas despite geographic mileage being so close. These morons in Kansas City (who in many ways can massively share the blame for dumbing-down and ruining the movie-going experience on a national level) should be ashamed. But I guess that’s what you get when your CEO is from Frito-Lay and Starbucks, you get a complete and utter disregard for showmanship, and for taking the time to know your market.

Ron Newman
Ron Newman on June 21, 2012 at 5:55 am

This is a very sad day for Harvard Square, for Cambridge, and for film exhbition throughout the Boston area.

I believe Harvard Square is the last remaining theatre from the old USACinemas chain to survive through merger first with Loews and then with AMC.

CSWalczak on June 21, 2012 at 3:44 am

The theater is closing as of Sunday, July 8, 2012, according to the Harvard Crimson: View article

Ron Newman
Ron Newman on June 20, 2012 at 2:43 am

That would be sad. It would leave only the very specialized Brattle Theatre as the only cinema in all of Harvard Square.

IanJudge on June 20, 2012 at 12:14 am

Rumor around town is that the Harvard Square Theatre has been sold by AMC Theatres to a commercial developer who does not intend to keep the building in use as a theater but will instead most likely demolish it or redevelop it. We shall see what happens…

billwhite on September 10, 2011 at 12:59 am

Tom, I had quit managing the theatre before you came in, and you rehired me as house manager.

Ringsight on July 7, 2011 at 4:40 pm

Does anyone recall seeing the Wizard of Oz on release in 1939 at the Theatre? Or have any documentation that it was shown? (I asked this before and got some useful feedback, but not a definitive yes or no). Thanks.

Ron Newman
Ron Newman on July 7, 2011 at 4:33 pm

What I reported here back in March 2010 seems to have been just a temporary aberration that lasted a week or so. AMC still advertises the Harvard Square Theatre, and all of its other local cinemas (Loews Boston Common, Braintree, Burlington, Loews Liberty Tree Mall in Danvers, Framingham, and Chestnut Hill) in the Globe’s “g” section.

DrJG on July 7, 2011 at 3:56 am

Got the particular name I was looking for, but still, it would be good to find a listing of films shown in HST during eighties.

CinemarkFan on July 5, 2011 at 12:52 am


The movie you’re thinking of is The Official Story (1985). It opened in America in November of that year.

Great movie. I saw it on cable a few years ago.

DrJG on July 4, 2011 at 5:57 pm

I have been trying to recall the names of some very good films I saw in eighties, very often in Harvard square theatre, and it would help if there were a list of films shows in Harvard Square theatre – also if someone can recall the name of a film made in Brazil, mid eighties, about an upper class woman realising that her adopted daughter is actually a child of massacred political opponents of the regime, and that her husband was party to it, please do tell.

Ron Newman
Ron Newman on March 2, 2010 at 3:02 am

For the past week, AMC has not advertised the Harvard Square theatre in the Boston Globe’s movie directory. Are they planning to close or sell it? AMC still advertises their other cinemas at Boston Common, Braintree, Burlington, Chestnut Hill, Danvers, and Framingham (but not Methuen or Tynsboro).