May 14th, 2009

SAYING GOODBYE TO MOVIES 6

Movies 6; located in Salisbury, Maryland, was my favorite theater to see a movie back when I was a kid.  This was long before the day of the multiplex.  This was when theaters had style, personality, and an awe-inspiring sense of wonder and magic.  It closed down back in 2000 and the building has remained vacant.  Until now.  The building that once housed hundreds of memories from my youth was completely demolished last week and it’s sad to know that yet another beautiful movie palace from my childhood is gone. 

 

Some old hippie once said, “They paved paradise and put up a parking lot”.  That pretty much sums it up.  I guess hippies aren’t so bad after all.

 

You know, a lot of people in our area referred to the theater as “The Boulevard Theater”, but I always called it Movies 6 because that’s what the giant sign out front said.  What made Movies 6 standout from other local theaters like Sun & Surf, White Marlin (also torn down and replaced by a Michael’s), and the Salisbury Mall theater (also completely leveled to the ground) was the fact that each of the six screens had a different personality.  The “Main” Theater had a curtain and was very elegant and spacious.  The “Upstairs” Theater had a screen that was level to the floor and the audience was perched high above it so that they had to look down at the screen.  The “Side” Theater had reclining leather seats and a huge aisle way so you could really stretch out if you were on the end.  The other three theaters were “Shoebox” Theaters that were a lot smaller than the other three but each had slight differences in size and shape.

 

I could sit here and type all day about how truly wonderful and special Movies 6 was but instead of doing that I’m just going to make a list for you.  This list says everything.  Is it as historically significant as the one that Schindler wrote?  No, not really.  What Mitch’s List DOES tell you is the sheer amount of movies he saw at good old Movies 6.  Just read these here titles.  These are some of the greatest movies ever made (many not so great, but who really cares).  These are movies that I was seeing for the first time.  These are movies that changed my life (many of them didn’t, but again, who cares).  These are movies that I take for granted today.  Many of these movies shaped my movie-viewing habits for years to come.  Even the bad movies I saw there are somewhat special to me just for the fact that I saw them at Movies 6.

 

Here now folks is the most complete list I can make of all the films I saw at Movies 6.  (To give you a frame of reference, I was born on 8/3/78.)  I’ve also added which screen I saw the film on to give you the best sense of the viewing experience and whether or not I still have the original ticket stub (TS).  I’ve also added the original release date of the films to make this a chronological list (although I probably didn’t see them on opening day) as well as any special memories attached to the viewing experience.  Keep in mind that this is the most comprehensive list of films I can remember seeing and if I can think of any more, I’ll surely add them.

 

1983


5/25 Return of the Jedi (Main Theater) **Special Note** Saw this FOUR times in the theater.  (Twice at Movies 6.)  Awesome eye candy for a rabid 4 year old Star Wars fanatic.

 

8/12 The Man Who Wasn’t There 3-D (Main Theater) **Special Note**  Saw it in 3-D.  The sight of 3-D boobs does wonders to a 5 year old’s mind.

 

11/18 Amityville 3-D (Main Theater) **Special Note** Saw it in 3-D.  The sight of a crispy Candy Clark efficiently set the tone for what I’d come to expect from a horror film.


1984


2/17 Lassiter (Main Theater) **Special Note** Grown-up movie that I was dragged to and fell asleep on.

 

3/9 Splash! (Main Theater)

 

3/30 Romancing the Stone (Shoebox Theater)

 

5/23 Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (Main Theater) **Special Note** The heart-ripping scene was about as good as it got for 5 year old Mitchy.

 

6/8 Ghostbusters (Main Theater) 
 

6/8 Gremlins (Side Theater) **Special Note** The shock and awe in the theater during Phoebe Cates’ infamous Santa Claus speech will stay with me forever.

 

7/20 The Neverending Story (Side Theater) **Big disappointment for 5 year old Mitchy.

 

7/24 Meatballs 2 (Main Theater) **Special Note** Saw this with my mom who rarely took me to the movies.  She was not amused.


1985


4/18 Legend (Shoebox Theater) **Special Note** Boring as Hell for a 6 year old.

 

5/22 Rambo:  First Blood Part 2 (Main Theater) **Special Note** Awesome whether you’re 6 or 30.

 

6/21 Cocoon (Main Theater) **Special Note** First time I realized that old people aren’t a lot of fun.

 

7/10 Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome (Side Theater)

 

11/27 Rocky 4 (Main Theater)  **Special Note** The combo of this and Rambo in the same year was cinematic bliss for the 7 year old Mitchy.

 

12/4 Young Sherlock Holmes (Shoebox Theater)

 

12/11 Jewel of the Nile (Shoebox Theater)


1986


2/28 House (Main Theater) 

 

5/9 Short Circuit (Shoebox Theater)

 

5/15 Top Gun (Upstairs Theater)

 

7/18 Aliens (Side Theater) TS **Special Note** I skipped Vacation Bible Study to see this flick and it was well worth it.

 

8/15 The Fly (Side Theater) TS **Special Note** Unforgettable.

 

9/26 Crocodile Dundee (Main Theater) TS

 

11/26 Solarbabies (Side Theater) **Special Note** First time I remember actually wanting to leave a movie before it was over.

 

1987


6/5 Harry and the Hendersons  (Main Theater)  **Special Note**  I saw this with only one eye due to a gigantic shiner I got while playing baseball earlier in the day.

 

7/1 Innerspace (Main Theater)

 

7/31 The Lost Boys (Shoebox Theater) **Special Note** The first issue of Fangoria that I ever bought had an article on The Lost Boys and that issue got me hooked on Fango for years to come.

 

8/28 House 2:  The Second Story (Main Theater)


1988


5/13 Friday the 13th Part 7:  The New Blood (Main Theater) **Special Note** This was the first Jason movie I saw in the theater.

 

5/20 Willow (Main Theater)

 

6/22 Who Framed Roger Rabbit? (Main Theater)

 

7/22 Caddyshack 2 (Shoebox Theater)

 

10/21 Halloween 4:  The Return of Michael Myers (Main Theater) **Special Note** This was the first Halloween movie I saw in the theater.

 

11/9 Child’s Play (Side Theater)

 

12/23 Hellbound:  Hellraiser 2  (Main Theater)  **Special Note**  I saw this with my late Uncle Jerry who thought director Tony Randel was the guy from The Odd Couple.


1989


6/9 Star Trek 5:  The Final Frontier (Shoebox Theater)

 

6/23 Batman (Main Theater)  **Special Note** On opening night, my dad got into an accident on the way to the theater and when my mom said that we’d probably would not see the movie, I threw a fit.  I mean my whole 10 year old world revolved around seeing Batman and NOTHING was preventing me from seeing it.  My parents eventually relented and we saw it anyway.  Little Mitchy always got his way.

 

6/23 Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (Shoebox Theater)

 

7/7 Lethal Weapon 2 (Main Theater) **Special Note** Had no idea what this was about because I had never seen Part 1 and ended up loving this flick.  It’s still my favorite of the series.

 

7/14 Licence to Kill (Shoebox Theater)

 

8/9 The Abyss (Side Theater) **Special Note** Big disappointment for 11 year old Mitchy.

 

9/29 Johnny Handsome (Main Theater)

 

10/13 Halloween 5:  The Revenge of Michael Myers (Main Theater)

 

11/4 The Phantom of the Opera (Shoebox Theater)

 

1990


4/6 The First Power (Main Theater) **Special Note** This is the first time I remember going to see something purely because it was the only new movie playing at the time.

 

5/25 Back to the Future 3 (Shoebox Theater)

 

6/1 Total Recall (Shoebox Theater) TS **Special Note** First movie I remember ever being stunned into complete silence.  Also the first time I remember a movie was shown in more than one screen at the same time.

 

6/15 Dick Tracy (Main Theater) **Special Note** Big Disappointment for 11 year old Mitchy.

 

6/15 Gremlins 2:  The New Batch (Shoebox Theater)

 

6/22 Robocop 2 (Main Theater) **Special Note** Fuck everybody who says this movie sucks.  11 year old Mitchy loved it and he still does 19 years later.

 

7/18 Arachnophobia (Main Theater)

 

8/24 Darkman (Side Theater) TS

 

11/16 Rocky 5 (Main Theater) TS **Special Note** Fuck everybody who says this movie sucks.  12 year old Mitchy loved it and he still does 19 years later.

 

11/21 Predator 2 (Side Theater) TS

 

12/7 The Rookie (Shoebox Theater) **Special Note** Grossly underrated Clint flick.

 

1991


**Special Note** It’s around this time that the Regal 10 located in The Centre at Salisbury opened up and started taking all the first run movies away from Movies 6.  It would be the first sign that the end was approaching.


6/21 The Rocketeer (Side Theater) **Special Note** Big Disappointment for 12 year old Mitchy.

 

12/6 Star Trek 6:  The Undiscovered Country (Main Theater)

 

1992


11/6 Jennifer 8 (Side Theater)

 

1993


1/8 Leprechaun (Shoebox Theater) TS **Special Note** By now Movies 6 was almost exclusively a “Second Run” discount theater.  Leprechaun was the first “First Run” movie I remember that played at Movies 6 on its opening weekend.


1994


I didn’t see any movies at Movies 6 that year.  Bummer.


1995


12/22 Cutthroat Island (Shoebox Theater) **Special Note** Another “First Run” flick that debuted at Movies 6.


1996


7/17 Multiplicity  (Main Theater) TS

 

7/26 Supercop (Shoebox Theater) TS

 

10/31 A Nightmare on Elm Street (Main Theater) **Special Note** This was a special showing that was organized as a fundraiser for a local charity.

 

1998


**Special Note** Around this time, Movies 6 would periodically get more arty type movies.


3/6 The Big Lebowski (Main Theater) TS

 

5/22 Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (Upstairs Theater) TS

 

9/18 Permanent Midnight (Upstairs Theater) TS

 

11/13 I Still Know What You Did Last Summer (Upstairs Theater) TS

 

12/11 Star Trek:  Insurrection (Side Theater) TS

 

1999


3/19 Ravenous (Shoebox Theater)

 

6/30 South Park:  Bigger, Longer, and Uncut (Main Theater)

 

10/8 Superstar (Shoebox Theater)

 

11/12 Dogma (Shoebox Theater)

 

11/19 Sleepy Hollow (Shoebox Theater)

 

2000


2/18 Pitch Black (Upstairs Theater) TS

 

4/5 Black and White (Shoebox Theater) **Special Note** This was the final movie I ever saw at Movies 6.  The movie itself was thoroughly forgettable but I’ll never forget it since this was the last flick I ever saw there.  Sniff…sniff…

 

Well, that’s quite an impressive list of movies and memories.  Does anybody else have any memories of this theater or of theaters past they’d like to share?  Then leave me a comment.  I’d love to hear from you…