Cinema Houston: From Nickelodeon to Megaplex (Roger by David Welling

By David Welling

Cinema Houston celebrates a colourful century of motion picture theatres and moviegoing in Texas's greatest urban. Illustrated with greater than 2 hundred old pictures, newspaper clippings, and ads, it lines the background of Houston motion picture theatres from their early twentieth-century beginnings in vaudeville and nickelodeon homes to the opulent downtown theatres inbuilt the Twenties (the Majestic, Metropolitan, Kirby, and Loew's State). It additionally captures the thrill of the local theatres of the Thirties and Nineteen Forties, together with the Alabama, Tower, and River Oaks; the theatres of the Nineteen Fifties and early Sixties, together with the Windsor and its Cinerama roadshows; and the multicinemas and megaplexes that experience come to dominate the motion picture scene because the past due 1960s.

While maintaining the glories of Houston's misplaced motion picture palaces—only some of these old theatres nonetheless survive—Cinema Houston additionally vividly re-creates the moviegoing adventure, chronicling hour of darkness motion picture insanity, summer season nights on the drive-in, and, in fact, all these tasty snacks on the concession stand. bound to entice a large viewers, from motion picture enthusiasts to devotees of Houston's architectural heritage, Cinema Houston captures the bygone period of the city's motion picture homes, from the lowbrow to the chic, the hi-tech sound of 70mm Dolby and THX to the crackle of a drive-in speaker on a funky spring night.

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Extra resources for Cinema Houston: From Nickelodeon to Megaplex (Roger Fullington Series in Architecture)

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From 1907 it functioned as a brewery warehouse. In 1916 it became an early black professional building, housing law- the first motion pictures were void of story—merely a moving snapshot—but narrative soon became an essential part of film and its marketability. Edwin S. Porter, a cameraman and director for the Edison Company, created The Great Train Robbery (1903), an elevenminute tour de force that told a definite story, ending with the startling shot of a cowboy aiming a gun directly at the viewer and pulling the trigger.

Courtesy of the Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center, University of Texas at Austin. ” Early movies were shot like a stage play, in one continuous long shot and no close-ups. The audience quickly came to understand how a medium shot or a close-up strengthened the impact of a scene, regardless of their not being able to see the actor’s feet. 17 Another change that would evolve over the next decade was the redesigning of box seats into balconies. In stage productions before the 1870s, the action took place on a wide forestage in front of the proscenium arch, providing easy visibility for those in the side boxes that lined the left and right walls.

In September 1941, the Olshan Demolishing Company began work on the Cozy. The common lot of many of Houston’s early theatres was eventual demolition. The Cozy was razed to make way for a parking lot. According to Stockard, the house was opened by George K. Jorgensen on January 1, 1907. Jorgensen had trained himself in carnivals, street fairs, and circuses, touring the country with his own projector and films. When film distributors made it easier to obtain new merchandise, he rented a vacant storefront in Houston, filled it with 200 folding chairs, hung up a sheet as a screen, installed his Little Edison projector, and set up a ticket office in front.

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