Harlem Corners Theaters

7340 W. 87th Street,
Bridgeview, IL 60455

Unfavorite 1 person favorited this theater

Showing 1 - 25 of 29 comments

Foxwoman95 on December 5, 2017 at 9:14 am

I missed this place it was our hangout back then. The Nachos, Pizza, Pretzels, and popcorn were so good. They gave us extra cheese on the Nachos, aww man I missed this place.

rivest266 on November 7, 2016 at 3:42 pm

This opened on August 22nd, 1989. Its grand opening ad can be found in the photo section.

DavidZornig on May 19, 2016 at 3:56 pm

2003 photo added, photo credit Adam Martin Collection. Via the Chicago’s Extinct Businesses Facebook page.

Paul Fortini
Paul Fortini on August 19, 2015 at 11:35 am

Has anything happened with this site? A freind of mine once lived in Bridgeview and he said the theater always seemed to do good business.

Cyberyan on April 7, 2011 at 3:23 am

Finally an update that should ease a few minds at the property managers offices. A small gym company did a walk thru and have decided to see if anyone is willing to join. Just did a quick drive by last week and seen some blue prints of what they would have planned if and when they move in. I really don’t see this place taking off anytime soon…but I guess they proved someone could take over all that empty space. They have an ad for employment on craigslist with a 507 area code (minnesota).

CinemarkFan on March 25, 2011 at 2:24 pm

Damn. If the place wasn’t half ripped apart, Picture Show Entertainment could really do wonders here.

Come to think of it, are there any nearby abandoned department stores that could be turned into 2nd run houses?

Paul Fortini
Paul Fortini on March 25, 2011 at 11:55 am

That sucks that Harlem Corners is sitting half ripped apart as Robin Roz says. See my comments above about the Morton Grove Theatre. They were closed because the strip mall owner saw $$ by putting in a Shoe Carnival instead. Whereas the MG did great business, reportedly the shoe store’s parking lot sits empty most of the time.

A cinema can also have a residual effect on area businesses. People go out to eat or for a drink before or after a show. When shopping for shoes, not so much. And a shuttered movie theatre brings in no $$ for itself or the surrounding community.

Cyberyan on December 2, 2010 at 1:55 pm

Hi all, Just wanted to update on HC. No new plans for anything with the site. The village had the owner (property managers) enclose the front of the site with actual metal and glass doors, as the 2x4 and plywood subdoorway made no sense if they were not planning to do any work. Guessing they removed the lettering and marquee display as same time

To answer your question Robin, Yes, I mean Maybe, I mean wait….(thinking)…..The theater is gone, The gym is a dead idea, So yeah the site is half ripped apart. Who is gonna want that much bare space plus the floor partially tore up. In my opinion the managers (or owner if he had to approve) saw big dollar signs and a long term leasee and got burned.

On a different subject, Sec. of State Jesse White (DMV office) took over the Franks Nursery and Crafts site that I originally said should have been offered to Ballys due to the open outdoor lot, plus the storefront. DMV office now works out of the storefront and the side lot is the waiting area for those needing to take a road test. So Harlem Corners Mall may hang on thanks to the DMV, but there will continue to be a big empty space that will remain unrentable.

Robin Roz
Robin Roz on September 5, 2010 at 6:33 pm

So is this place sitting half ripped apart or something?

Life's Too Short
Life's Too Short on May 18, 2010 at 10:55 am

Bally Total Fitness went bankrupt for the second time in four years. I don’t think they will continue expansion plans anytime soon.

rpb on October 31, 2009 at 10:48 pm

I remember this theatre had good popcorn, and decent sound. The last movie my wife and I saw there was “Scream”, back in 1997. It was still a first run theatre at that time, and I remember getting into a shouting match with several noisy and obnoxious teens & twenty-somethings, because they were talking, laughing, jumping over the seats, and doing other “ghetto garbage”. No usher could be found. I was sad, because the “city” had finally found this nice cineplex, and I knew it wouldn’t be long before it fell. Passed by it today, and it’s still vacant with no renter in site.

Cyberyan on June 3, 2009 at 9:07 am

Update: Drove by again, nothing new has been done to the building (still 4 bare walls) and the date on the permits have expired. All equipment has been removed….

Cyberyan on January 28, 2009 at 9:54 pm

Update: Seems my feeling may ring true…the constuction of the Ballys has stopped. Drove by to see how it looks and how far they are from finishing (they had a June 2009 opening date planned) Talked to a few employees of near by shops and was told they have not worked all this year….and they don’t miss the noise. Can’t say if they are walking away….yet, but it don’t look good.

Cyberyan on January 12, 2009 at 2:10 am

Hey mindhunter, When I went by that day in Nov it was bare walls. The 3 empty stores to the left were empty from the start, the actual theater screens, seats, consession were gone…I did see some stuff like a busted set a seats (Guess the crews kept it to take a break in). The last time I drove past they had a crew of jackhammer bobcats tearing the floor open for the planned pool, and a few welding crews reinforning the ceiling spans.

But on a secondary note…it was not long after they tore the building up that I heard that Bally’s was undergoing bankruptcy protection…..I don’t think I would want to be the owner of that property if Ballys takes a “dive”, Cause if they thought it would be hard to rent a almost fully functionial movie theater….try renting a (empty) fintess gym…..or pay to remove a pool.

Mindhunter55 on December 28, 2008 at 10:30 am

This is really a shame. This is where my love of movies started as my parents took me to see many movies here. I remember that if a movie was really big enough it would open on two screens, very rate for a small second run theatre. Cyberyan when you looked inside are you saying that there was nothing left? The concession stand was gone? Where the theatres / screens / seats still there, or were the walls seperating the theatres taken down and it is now just one big space?

Cyberyan on November 7, 2008 at 2:16 am

With a heavy heart I have to comments that I drove by Harlem Corners today. Crews were removing the doors & windows from the 3 empty store fronts and have boarded up the theaters main entry. I waited a about 10-15 minutes and a big rig dumpster showed up and the driver opened the door for me. I’ll admit I did not like what I saw…Harlem Corners is offically gone, all that remains is a few beams and some odds and ends.

Cyberyan on September 19, 2008 at 5:24 pm

Just a quick comment, First off I’m not against the idea of putting a Ballys in the Harlem Corners Mall. I just wanna know why not move it 2 storefronts west. The old Franks Nursery Crafts would have been better. More space, could have been rebuilt as a brand new building and not trying to shoehorn Ballys into the theater space.
I can see wanting to open a theater thats currently built versus a store front with a open space garden dept. If someone a year from now would like to open it they could but now….Once she is cleared its gone.

Life's Too Short
Life's Too Short on September 19, 2008 at 8:47 am

Things go to DVD very quickly these days it seems. I think that makes discount theatres a difficult proposition.

It is always a shame when a theatre is demolished, because of all the memories people have associated with the building. But I think a brand new Bally’s is a good thing for the community, especially if the alternative is vacant space.

If this were a grand movie palace from the 1920’s I might say: Organize! Fight! But it was a pretty non-descript mall theatre. So, I say hold onto your memories and be comfortable in the notion that time marches on.

Paul Fortini
Paul Fortini on September 19, 2008 at 5:15 am

It is a shame. I think that there is still a demand for 2nd run houses. I think that the LaGrange is being mis-managed or something. And the botched renovation job on that theatre can’t be helping. Everytime I’ve been to the LaGrange, there has always been a decent sized crowd and they play a surprisingly good mix of movies.

But back to the Harlem Corners. It was once part of a chain called “Value Theatres” which included the Northgate, the Buffalo Grove, the Morton Grove, and a few others. Only the Buffalo Grove remains. The Northgate failed after an unsuccessful attempt to go first-run. The Morton Grove went out of business because the strip-mall owners decided that they could make more money with additional retail (A Shoe Carnival eventually went into the MG’s building and at best only one or two cars would be in the parking lot).

aek316 on September 18, 2008 at 9:57 pm

What a shame! I saw many a 2nd run movie here in my college days. The 2nd run theater is a dying breed, and this one was in pretty decent shape for a second run. I was always hoping someone would come in and revive it. In a city as big as Chicago, you’d think there’d be at least a few 2 buck shows! But now they’re all gone. Harlem Corners, Morton Grove and I hear the Lagrange is having problems too. Totally sucks! My kingdom for a value theater! Worst of all, it’ll meet a similar fate that a lot of my chilhgood theaters have: a freaking gym! It’d be better to let the building sit there for lease rather then have it gutted and turned into another blah gym like Bricktown Square, Golf Mill and so many others have. RIP Harlem Corners. Anyone know how this place went under anyways? I oftne went on dollar Tuesdays when I lived closer to the area, and it was almost always crowded no matter what the feature was-

Cyberyan on September 17, 2008 at 2:24 pm

Say goodbye to Harlem Corners Theater….a sign went up in the front window this week. The building will be modified top to bottom for a Bally’s fitness gym. It beaks my heart to see it go, especialy once the construction begins. The plans show warmup room, kiddie gym, weight room and swimming pool. All we can hope is that construction cost or plans won’t get thru the village board and they scrap the idea.

Cyberyan on May 5, 2008 at 3:44 am

Drove past HC last week and gave the property managers a call for info, The gentleman that handles it told me they are in talks with a company that wants the location. Was a bit tight lipped as far as if they wanted it for a theater or were planning somthing else. He sounded like they were planning to modify the building. He stumbled over the wording “Your looking for some of the theater space?” …Some, Hmmm. Not sure how more than one company or group can run out of the same site at same time. I did notice that 3 of the theaters on the right side are located behind a already existing retail site that is empty. Maybe they want the building space on the right and expand the back for storage/delivery. Can’t say I’d blame them….kinda odd for a retail space not to have a back door or delivery area.

CHICTH74 on February 26, 2008 at 7:47 pm

Still for rent or lease nothing seams to be happing with this place.

CHICTH74 on December 26, 2007 at 8:50 pm

Just went pass this place and it is still closed looking for some on to rent or lease it , if was not for the sign on 87th it would be invisable. Thank you for you time.

CHICTH74 on July 11, 2007 at 8:50 pm

Catherine DiM

No harlem corners was or is located at 87th and Harlem the drive in was located at somthing like 79th and Harlem