If you haven’t noticed, we’re quite the bunch of architecture nerds here at Flavorwire, never missing an opportunity to feast our eyes on the most beautiful libraries, bookstores, opera houses, you name it. We’ve cast our eyes across America before looking for the best movie theaters in the land (we did it twice, actually) — but that search was more about the overall experience, with history and programming as important (if not more) than physical beauty. Just for fun, we decided to take another look, with an eye on pure aesthetics: what are the most beautiful movie theaters in the country? Several spaces on the previous lists qualified, but we decided to eliminate repetition; we also limited ourselves to venues that show films on at least a semi-regular basis (many gorgeous former movie houses now only showcase live events). Check out our top ten after the jump, and tell us more in the comments. … Read More
Hundreds of movie theaters have come and gone in New York City since the grand era of movie palaces and 25-cent matinées. While many have sadly been entirely demolished or lie in ruin, others remain hidden in plain sight, now repurposed as a Starbucks, a Modell’s, or… another Modell’s. Scattered around the city are dozens of movie theaters that are living a second life as a chain store, a church, or a gym. Their marquees may be stripped and their interiors mostly gutted, but the outlines of an old theater can still be seen if you know where to look. Here are a few New York City buildings that started out their lives as movie theaters and have survived to accommodate the city’s needs for more Modell’s.
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Last month, we took a look at some of the oddest-looking libraries from around the world, continuing our fascination with strange places to get our cultural fix. We’ve previously run down the best movie theaters in the world — but what about the strangest? So we scoured the Internet for unexpected yet wonderful locations where owners and programmers have converted, preserved, or augmented the moviegoing experience in unusual ways. Check out what we found after the jump — and if we’ve missed any good ones, make sure to let us know in the comments. … Read More
Today at Flavorpill, we read a few famous last texts. We enjoyed BuzzFeed’s response to McSweeney’s parody of their website. We read Silent Drape Runners’ text review of Katy Perry’s film Part of Me. We watched an opera performance where the libretto was created entirely from the captions of… Read More
Ingrid Bergman, the Swedish actress most known for her role in Casablanca opposite our favorite dashing, silver screen legend, Humphrey Bogart, believed that “no form of art goes beyond ordinary consciousness as film does, straight to our emotions, deep into the twilight of the soul.”
There’s nothing we love more than a good romp beyond ordinary consciousness into the infinite depths of our soul, and the minds behind these unconventional cinematic experiences obviously agree. As imaginative, quirky and sublimely romantic as the films they play, these inventive theaters might just change the way you’ll want to see movies forever.
From a network of unauthorized cinemas in the catacombs beneath Paris to a rehabilitated vintage mobile caravan to a floating theater in an idyllic blue lagoon, click through to check out the most amazing places in the world to see a movie. Which would you most like to experience? … Read More
Upper Broadway, which has been called that “ignored stretch of Manhattan,” contains the remains of a number of former movie theaters from the golden age of the silver screen. While none of these buildings are currently utilized as movie theaters, their facades (and a few of their interiors) serve as reminders to their prior uses. Their conditions, both interior and exterior, range from abandoned to restored and are representative of many of the city’s old theaters. Walking down Broadway from Washington Heights to the Upper West Side I encountered these theaters some of which were instantly recognizable as such by their architecture, while others I only discovered were theaters during the course of writing this article. The theaters are arranged from North to South, as I passed them on my walk, beginning with B. S. Moss’ former Coliseum Theatre at 181st Street and Broadway and culminating with the former RKO 81st Street Theater at 81st Street and Broadway. … Read More
As much as we would’ve welcomed it, we unfortunately had neither the time nor budget to visit every theater in America to fully research our post last week on the best movie theaters in the country; instead, we relied on our own experience and the testimonials of friends and colleagues. “If we left off your favorite,” went the conclusion of the introduction, “we’re certain you’ll let us know in the comments.”
Did you ever. As of this morning, our fine, far-flung readers had suggested 63 additional theaters, so a follow-up seemed in order. Of course, lists are finite, so not all could make the cut; we began by focusing on the houses that received multiple mentions and narrowed from there — again, based either on the quality of presentation, the eclecticism of the programming, or both.
“Writing a list of this type,” wrote commenter Kent Schuelke, “of course raises the hackles of fans of theaters that did not make the list, but I think everyone who bothers to read the comments section of this article is likely a movie fan so I am simply pleased to see so much love for not only the 12 theaters mentioned in the article but also the ones mentioned in these comments.” Hear, hear. Check out our amended list (13 more, for a grand total of 25) after the jump. … Read More
Last week, in singing the praises of the cool original posters for the Alamo Drafthouse’s “Rolling Roadshow” series, your author offhandedly noted that the Alamo is “arguably the greatest movie theater in the country.” (And keep in mind, this proclamation was made before the anti-texting PSA heard ’round the world). Our editor, being a good editor and all, posed the reasonable question, “Well, is it?” And so we started asking around.
Come to find out, people are very passionate about their favorite movie theaters. After carefully surveying friends and colleagues from all over the country, we managed to get a list of the country’s best down to a manageable dozen houses, based either on the quality of presentation, the eclecticism of the programming, or both. These days, when too many movie theaters are, to paraphrase Ebert, value-added popcorn stands, these venues deserve kudos for still striving to make movie-going an experience. Check them out after the jump, and if we left off your favorite, we’re certain you’ll let us know in the comments (UPDATE: And that you did, and we listened–read part two of this list here.) … Read More
This week’s news that DirecTV is launching a new, premium video-on-demand service, in which films that have been in theaters for as few as 60 days would be offered for home viewing (with a comparatively hefty $30 price tag) was mostly met with a collective shrug around here — mainly because the first movie on the menu is the tepid Sandler/Aniston effort Just Go With It, and seriously, who the hell would pay $30 to watch that sludge? But the notion of this collapsed “window” (the norm is about four months, though it was six or more in the VHS era) has got some filmmakers and suits all in a huff, and on Thursday, 23 of them signed their names to “AN OPEN LETTER FROM THE CREATIVE COMMUNITY ON PROTECTING THE MOVIE-GOING EXPERIENCE.” You can read it here. I’ve taken the liberty of drafting an open response (which I guess you can co-sign, in the comments, if you want?) after the jump. … Read More
With the Tribeca Film Festival right around the corner, we have movies and movie houses on the brain. And with BuzzFeed’s recent compilation of defunct theaters, we thought we’d present a small selection of our own favorite venues, whether dead or repurposed, in a few Flavorpill cities and beyond, where you could have once seen film. … Read More