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Movie Theater Left In The Dark

Long Beach Cinema 4 suddenly pulled its movie listings and locked its doors last Thursday.

Long Beach native and realtor Joe Ponte remembers when the city had four movie theaters.

Like other locals, Ponte wonders about the status of the city’s lone movie house, Long Beach Cinema 4, after the movie listings were cleared and the coming attraction posters were pulled down from the building at the corner of East Park Avenue and Long Beach Boulevard last week.

“As a realtor, I hope it is something internal and I’m hoping that there’s a new operator coming on board, a Loews or Sony,” said Ponte, a realtor with Prudential Douglas Elliman on West Park Avenue.

The theater was dark and the doors were locked last Thursday, but there have been no postings on the windows or exterior as to whether the owners have closed it for good or for renovations. A call to the theater is met with no answer or recorded messages. Philips International Realty, a Manhattan-based real estate agency that owns the building, did not return a call for comment on Monday afternoon.  

Scott Kemins, commissioner of the city’s building department, said that he hasn't heard anything about the status of the business.

“I know nothing about the movie theater other than it is closed,” he said on Sunday. “I tried to get some information on Friday, but I wasn’t able to get through to anyone. We don’t know why.”

The owner of the Smoke Shop store next door to the theater told Patch last Friday that the manager told him that the owner suddenly closed shop on Thursday.

West End resident George Ennis, who emailed Patch about the closing last Friday, was booked to host a pre-screening for his film festival at the theater on May 25. Each spring Ennis hosts the annual George Ennis Film Festival at the Cabana restaurant on West Beech Street, which will be held on June 5.

Long Beach Cinema 4 houses four screens at the site of the former Lido Theater. At one time, Long Beach had four movie theaters: Lido Theater, The Laurel on West Park Avenue (now CVS pharmacy), West End Movie House on West Beech Street, and The Crest, once located at the former Jackson Hotel on West Broadway at Edwards Boulevard.

“If it’s closed,” Ponte said about Long Beach's only theater, “it’s an end of an era to me.”

“I’m hoping that a new operator is going there because Long Beach really does need a theater,” he added. “I can’t say too much because we don’t know exactly what’s going on.”

The nearest movie theater to Long Beach is AMC Loews Fantasy 5 on North Park Avenue in Rockville Centre.

Lucy Centeno May 07, 2011 at 12:24 AM
Yes, my opinion is MY opinion. That is EXACTLY why I made a comment. To voice my opinion. I have NO problem taking my GRAND CHILDREN to another town for enjoyment. We love shell creek and the sprinklers, Woodmere park is delightful. I reside in Long Beach but do NOT advocate for Long Beach. More needs to be done to improve the quality for our youth. Sorry. And by the way, I don't have to move to enjoy other communities. My family is here and I will be where they are, whether you want my input or not. And thank you Thomas T.
Trying to Make Sense May 07, 2011 at 12:09 PM
I believe there is plenty of room for improvement too. I was hoping Lucy might explain exactly how the good ole days were better, or what it is that makes LB so lacking for young people, or why she refers to "a chosen few", or how she can say that the boardwalk is boring after I enumerated all that is going on there. Instead she suggests that I advocate (she resides), that I don't want her input(when I responded to her previous points) or that someone is suggesting she move. Long Beach is a dream come true for most kids and teens, yet she claims "more needs to be done..." without specifics and suggests she must take her family elsewhere for recreation. Whatever you say Lucy.
Jill Brennan Lessard May 09, 2011 at 02:10 PM
I live in the West End and don't get to the boardwalk that often; my children and I utilize the beach at the end of our block. So I can't speak to the current condition of the boardwalk itself. However, I can say that the last time we did use the boardwalk (last summer) to go bike riding I was pretty disappointed at the shape it was in. There were many loose/broken/rotting boards, as well as rusty nails sticking up from numerous locations. Not ideal conditions for biking with your kids. Or even just strolling along. As to the amenities available on the boardwalk - while not disagreeing with Mr. Monteko that there are many events that are organized around the boardwalk, I agree with Ms. Centeno that there is much more that could be done to enhance the experience. Repairing the damage would be an excellent starting point. Thomas T. also made valid points (in my opinion) regarding the lack of concessions and the condition of the existing bathroom facilities. I did not grow up in Long Beach, so I don't know what it was like pre-1998. However, I can still appreciate the fact that we have a jewel in the rough that could use some polish to bring out its full potential. Maybe we could look into forming some sort of committee (or find out if one already exists?) specifically targeted to boardwalk facilities/improvements/etc. AND, as this thread was originally about the movie theather closing I will end by saying I hope that we will not remain theaterless for long!
Lucy Centeno May 12, 2011 at 02:27 AM
It's CLOSED!
JM June 13, 2011 at 05:42 PM
It's Back!

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