• Big Screen alerts

This action-packed ad from Nov. 8, 1980, posted on Facebook by my old friend Ted Okuda, needed to be shared:

For less than 70¢ a feature, Chicago's Woods Theatre had Kensington Video and Red Box beat by a mile. It was the cheapest date night in town, but I wouldn't take my worst girl to the Woods.

Woods? It was a jungle! The stench of urine that hit your nostrils the moment you walked through the door overwhelmed the senses. Rats the size of polecats roamed the 1,126-seat auditorium.

You think today's texting and/or talking patrons are bad? Short of handing out bullhorns at the concession stand, audience participation was encouraged at the Woods. Audience members concerned for their favorite character's safety would scream "don't go in there" or "look out!" As if someone other than the poor schmuck seated three rows in front of them could hear.

Fans of martial arts triple-bills were known to show up fashionably late. Hence the vague showtimes. So long as you arrived after 9 a.m. and before midnight you were guaranteed a movie. It was 1980, right before cable television and home video had a chance to saturate American living rooms. Where else could one go at midnight on a cold November night to scratch their kung-fu itch?

Never one for kung-foolery, I do hold a screening at the Woods close to my heart. It wasn't at midnight, but all of the above-mentioned perks shared equal billing the afternoon I took in Super Stooges vs. the Wonder Women.

  • Big Screen alerts

Comments

Colonna Sept. 7, 2012 @ 2:52 p.m.

The Woods was so much of a dive that it was torn down in the mid-1990s and its property remained vacant for nearly 15 years!

The same block in Chicago (the infamous Block 37) also housed the United Artists and Roosevelt Theaters as well.

0

SurfPuppy619 Sept. 7, 2012 @ 5:50 p.m.

Oh....those old King Fu flicks....reminds me of the RnB Run Shaw days and "Five Fingers of Death" the first Kung Fu movie to get a wide release in the USA (71???...72???).......and a Shaw Brothers film...........

0

SurfPuppy619 Sept. 7, 2012 @ 5:54 p.m.

BTW great trailer! Although I was expecting Larry Moe and Curly Joe!

0

SurfPuppy619 Sept. 7, 2012 @ 5:57 p.m.

Hahhahaha....just checked the credits for Super Stooges vs. the Wonder Women= SHAW BROTHERS PRODUCTION!!!!!!!!!!!!

0

Sign in to comment

Join our
newsletter list

Enter to win $25 at Broken Yolk Cafe

Each newsletter subscription
means another chance to win!

Close