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Old 05-16-2019, 09:13 PM
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Let's talk about going to the drive-in movie theater


My parent were not fun people. We didn't have people over. Didn't take vacations. Didn't eat out. Didn't go to the movies much, but we did occasionally go to the drive-in, probably because it was cheap and comfortable. This would have been in southern California in the latter half of the 1950s.

I got to wear my pajamas in the car and I probably brought a pillow and blanket. Only child, so I had the whole back seat to myself. My father would hang the speaker on his partially rolled-down window. I think I got to go to the playground at the front before the movie, even in my jammies. Heck, I was around six or seven. We might have bought popcorn at the concession stand, or maybe we brought it from home.

In 1967 I went with a girlfriend and her father (huh?) to see Bedazzled with Dudley Moore and Raquel Welch. That was awkward, as I recall. I remember going in college (1969) with a guy when it was cold outside. Not good drive-in weather. He wanted to make out, but for me... ewwww. No way. The movie was The Sterile Cuckoo with Liza Minnelli.

Even as late as 1972-73, my first husband and I and a bunch of friends went when there was a special price on-- 99 cents per carload. We had a pickup truck (gift from his father) and we'd back it into the slot and hang the speaker somewhere along the side of the bed. We'd have a cooler of snacks--don't think we had beer, probably just sodas. Everyone was broke, so I'm sure we didn't buy concessions.

Any drive-in memories?
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Old 05-16-2019, 09:27 PM
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I remember the big screen out in a field decaying. They finally tore it down. Now there is a Chevrolet dealership in that spot.
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Old 05-16-2019, 09:34 PM
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I remember seeing 20,000 Leagues under the Sea at a drive-in. Two families of 11 total went in two cars while we were in Florida. I assume that was during spring break (my father taught school). As the movie came out in Dec 1954, I guess this was March of 1955 so I would have been almost 6.

As a graduate student, I lived in a high-rise school owned building. My roommate had a telescope. We could see a drive-in screen out the window. Unfortunately I couldn't read lips.
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Old 05-16-2019, 10:07 PM
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Our drive-in carried the 70's exploitation movies.

Burt Reynolds Gator, White Lightning, Deliverance

Shaft, Foxy Brown,Coffy a lot of black action films

I went with friends from high school. Took a few dates.

Last edited by aceplace57; 05-16-2019 at 10:08 PM.
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Old 05-16-2019, 10:16 PM
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Back in the middle 50's I took a date to a drive-in down near Morgan City, Louisiana. Don't remember at all what the move was, but about half-way thru the move we both heard water splashing. A quick investigation (from the inside of the car) disclosed that a girl in the next car evidently had decided that going to the concession stand, where they had the rest rooms in back) would have taken way too long, so she was using one of the rear tires on their car as a target. Evidently worked like a charm.

Took my date and myself a little time to get back into the movie.

Last edited by Daylate; 05-16-2019 at 10:17 PM.
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Old 05-16-2019, 10:44 PM
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Remember the spike strips at the exit? They'd ruin your tires if you tried driving into the lot.

You could only exit from that area.

I didn't get to go when drive-ins were nice. Playground for kids, bleacher seats if you wanted to get out of the car.

That was all run down when I went in the mid 70's. It wasn't family friendly anymore. The R rated movies had too much sex & violence. Couldn't bring young kids.

Last edited by aceplace57; 05-16-2019 at 10:48 PM.
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Old 05-16-2019, 10:45 PM
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I go once or twice a year: https://redwooddrivein.com/nowplaying/friday/#c
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Old 05-16-2019, 10:56 PM
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i went to the drive in the 70s and 80s and some of the 90s ..... our last drive in closed in 95 after going to weekends only our 5.00 night was Wednesdays but over the years it went from 2 screens to one and then just weekends and i didn't even know it was closing until i read in the paper about the last movies it showed ,,,,,,,

We used to go in the winter and be the only ones there ..... lady that ran it thought it was nuts but sometimes shed just give us stuff so it didn't go stale ...... and since we brought out own it was heaven sooo much junk food .... one time she even let us have pizza delivered ,,,,,,
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Old 05-16-2019, 10:56 PM
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I remember my mother and grandmother dragging my brother and I along to see Nicholas and Alexandra at a drive in. I was probably 7 at the time. Three-hours-and-eight-minutes and about the only thing I remember is mom making me get down on the floor of the back seat at the end of the movie so I wouldn't see all the Romanovs get shot.

I have occasionally considered watching the movie as an adult to find out what I missed.
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Old 05-16-2019, 11:05 PM
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Our family would go from time to time back in the 1960s and 1970s. The features were what we went to see, but there was also a B-picture, and I grew to love those. Wish I could find them today.

And the dancing popcorn and candy bars between the movies were always fun.
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Old 05-16-2019, 11:52 PM
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I remember going with a few of my high school friends, in the very early 1960s. Then, in 1969 I saw 2001 with my bf.
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Old 05-17-2019, 12:43 AM
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Originally Posted by ThelmaLou View Post
My parent were not fun people. We didn't have people over. Didn't take vacations. Didn't eat out. Didn't go to the movies much, but we did occasionally go to the drive-in, probably because it was cheap and comfortable.
You have my parents! I tell my kids sometimes things about my childhood, such as that the first time I ate in a restaurant was when I was 16 and my sister way paying. We sometimes had hamburgers but it was always to go. We did take vacations, but my father was always really tense, so I donít any have good memories of them. My sister simply stopped taking them as an adult. I was in my 40s before it hit me that people go on vacation because itís fun.

Anyway, we went to the drive-in a couple of times. Once when I was really small, they took us to see Bambi and apparently it was pretty scary for a four-year-old. We may have gone another time after that, but for father who grew up in the depression on a dirt farm in central Utah, movies were a waste of money.
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Old 05-17-2019, 01:21 AM
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Back in the middle 50's I took a date to a drive-in down near Morgan City, Louisiana. Don't remember at all what the move was, but about half-way thru the move we both heard water splashing. A quick investigation (from the inside of the car) disclosed that a girl in the next car evidently had decided that going to the concession stand, where they had the rest rooms in back) would have taken way too long, so she was using one of the rear tires on their car as a target. Evidently worked like a charm.

Took my date and myself a little time to get back into the movie.
One benefit of having a doctor for a father was that we had specimen bottles so we didn't have to make the restroom trek.

I can't find a reference to it, but I do remember an intermission game where you were supposed to chase a moving light around on the screen (this was in the '50s when spotlights on cars were fairly common, IIRC to find house numbers on unlighted streets). Does this ring a bell and if so, does anyone remember the name?
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Old 05-17-2019, 01:28 AM
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In the '50s my parents had a station wagon, so my brother and I camped out in the back. We pretty much always fell asleep before the movie was over and woke up back home. No seat belts in those days.
The first movie I remember seeing in a drive-in was The Story of Mankind with lots of people including Grouch and Harpo Marx. I would have been not quite six.
We went fairly often.
I saw Star Wars for the first time in LA at a drive-in. When we went to the Thousand Islands we'd often take the kids to one on the Canadian side of the St. Lawrence. And there was one in San Jose which let you in for free or for very cheap after 10 pm or so. My daughter went to that one a lot.
Weirdest one: a drive-in NE of Philadelphia by US 1 showed either R or X rated movies. I saw skin, but we went by too fast to tell more. Weird that it was visible from the road, and there was also a motel with five or six stories, some of the rooms of which had a good view of the screen. Then they finished 95 and we went that way, so I don't know when it got torn down.
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Old 05-17-2019, 05:01 AM
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My mom worked at a drive-in for awhile and so we got in for free and we could have all the popcorn and soda we wanted, as long as we brought our own containers.

This made us very popular with all the kids on the block.

It was great fun. We'd go every night that we could. After we'd seen the movie the first night, we'd just play at the playground on all the other nights until a new movie came out. I can't recall all the movies we saw.
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Old 05-17-2019, 05:41 AM
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The only time our family went to a drive-in as a group was probably '66 or '67 in Baltimore. Mom and Dad loaded the 5 of us kids into the station wagon, with blankets and pillows, of course. I'm pretty sure it was a double feature, but the only one I remember was Cat Ballou. And pretty much all I remembered about it was a drunk Lee Marvin singing Happy Birthday and blowing out candles around the casket at the funeral. I thought that was hilarious!!

Years later, I saw the movie in its entirety - not exactly kid-friendly, but I'm pretty sure we didn't care anyway.

When we lived in Jacksonville, in the mid-to-late 80s, there was a crappy drive-in (doubled as a flea market on weekends) that showed heavily edited porn. I'd never seen a porno, so one night, we went to see Debbie Does Dallas, taking our 1-y/o baby along. The movie was awful - maybe the original uncut version was better... who knows? The funniest part was my husband holding our daughter as she held on to the steering wheel, pretending to drive.

I just looked - it was called Playtime Drive In and it closed in 2008 - the end of an era.
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Old 05-17-2019, 06:00 AM
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I'm surprised drive-ins didn't last. They had a lot of advantages over indoor theaters.

You could dress like you wanted.
Talk & joke around during the movie
Bring your own food and beverage, including beer
Kids could watch the movie until they fell asleep. You didn't have to wake them up to go home.

And, dating couples liked the privacy of a car. *Cough*

Last edited by aceplace57; 05-17-2019 at 06:02 AM.
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Old 05-17-2019, 06:05 AM
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I'm surprised drive-ins didn't last. They had a lot of advantages over indoor theaters.

You could dress like you wanted.
Talk & joke around during the movie
Bring your own food and beverage, including beer
Kids could watch the movie until they fell asleep. You didn't have to wake them up to go home.

And, dating couples liked the privacy of a car. *Cough*
Sound and picture stayed lousy as walk-in theatres improved greatly.
They started charging by person rather than carload.
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Old 05-17-2019, 06:24 AM
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Sound and picture stayed lousy as walk-in theatres improved greatly.
They started charging by person rather than carload.
And they can't afford to be first run much anymore, either, because people bring their own food rather than count on the concessions.

Still, my wife and I go to the Ford-Wyoming once every year or so, and I can't wait for my daughter to be aware of going to the drive-in. It was a frequent summer treat for my brother and I during the late 1970's and very early 1980's.

It was two movies instead of one, if we could stay awake. And, it let us stay up late. We did sometimes purchase from the concessions: foot-long hot dogs before Subway apparently stole the trademark. We always brought out own popcorn, though, popped on the stove and put into a large, paper grocery bag.
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Old 05-17-2019, 06:33 AM
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In 1996 my daughter was six years old and convinced me she was fine watching Twister (PG-13). She told me it was about weather, so how scary could that be?

She handled the movie just fine. But as a lead-in to the movie they played a siren sound effect and had a strobe light flashing. The announcer read this cheesy announcement about a tornado approaching the drive in. She freaked out over that, until I explained they were just goofing around.
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Old 05-17-2019, 06:39 AM
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Lots of Drive-In memories. There was one only a couple of miles away, and I saw a lot of films there. The first I recall seeing was Dinosaurus, a low-budget Dinosaur movie that was able to give you quality stop-motion dinosaurs by intercutting them with scenes using puppet dinosaurs. It was a pretty decent flick*, but it started raining during the film -- not merely a rainstorm, but a thunderstorm, with lightning that blanked out the screen. I think we left early.

A couple of years later my father took me with a friend to see King Kong vs. Godzilla, a brand new film at the time, and in color.

The Drive-In put up an indoor building then, and a lot of the movies I saw were indoors, although they continued to run the outdoor theater, and I saw movies there, as well.

When I went to grad school, there were drive-ins I the area, but they were in decline. They were showing X-rated movies to help make ends meet. I saw Galaxina (which was R rated) at one, and went to an X-rated one just for the novelty of it (This isn't me trying to wriggle out of the shame of seeing an X-rated movie -- I really don't care for watching them. They don't do anything for me.).

Then I went to grad school in Utah, and found that drive-ins were still a Big Deal theater (I understand that they were in the South, as well). Salt Lake city seemed stuck in a Time Warp in many ways -- kids cruised Main Street on Saturday nights, there was a Head Shop above the Art Cinema, and Drive-Ins were still popular and well-patronized. There was an octoplex there that had a central projecting booth-and-snack bar while it sent films out in eight equally angularly spaced directions. I took a date to a double feature of The Fly and Predator, and went by myself to see some other flicks that hadn't been shown at the indoor theaters near my apartment.

Now that I'm living in Massachusetts, there are still two drive-in theaters within easy drives, and we've taken our daughter and her friends to movies there. We held one birthday party in the van, crowding in a stack of teenaged girls and a birtrhday cake. We've seen a Harry Potter film, Kung-fu Panda, Wall-E, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the CRystal Skull, and some other flicks there. The place has a nice retro feel and a sort of community spirit -- in the twilight before the film starts, people pull out lawn chairs and play cards and socialize.




*As I've remarked before, I suspect that James Cameron saw this as a kid, and the fight between the T rex and the guy in the steam shovel probably inspired the fight between Ripley in the utility suit and the Alien Queen in Aliens.
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Old 05-17-2019, 07:06 AM
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My memories:

Going to the Stardusk Drive-in in Sheboygan, WI as a kid, with my parents. The playground was amazing, it had swings AND a teeter-totter! The snack bar had an overwhelming number of choices. I was excited about seeing a movie called "40 pounds of trouble" there. Then I was angry about falling asleep as the movie started, and missing it all.

Making out with my girlfriend (now wife) back in HS on a double date with another other couple in the back seat. No idea what movie we saw.
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Old 05-17-2019, 07:13 AM
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The move to digital kicked Drive-in's in the nads. The only thing that could make enough light for the really big screen were BIG carbon arc lamphouses that were expensive and messy to run, not to mention who wants to play with hundreds of Amps?

They had to go to 7000 watt Xenon bulbs. Not cheap. Make quite the pop when they blow up.
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Old 05-17-2019, 07:14 AM
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My girlfriend and I went to the local drive-in frequently around high school days. There was a bar next to it, with a BBQ shack out back that made the most glorious ribs. We would get take-out, then eat at the theatre while waiting for the sun to go down. Much better than drive-in food, you bet.

We had a disturbing experience once, though. It was a cold night and we must have steamed up the windows a little too much. There was a knock on the car door and a manager who told us to follow him to the office, where he proceeded to accuse my girl of prostitution and performing illegal acts. This was absurd, and what business was it of his, anyway? We refused to tell him who we were, and invited him to kick us out or call the cops. I guess he could have looked up the license plate, but that wouldn't lead him to the girl, since it was my car.

I was unconcerned about his accusations and asshole attitude -- I knew this couldn't go far, but I didn't want him to call my girl's father, who was a tyrant and had been known to beat his daughters on occasion. I remember asking for my money back so we could leave (I didn't get it).

Looking back, I think this was the way the pervert manager got his jollies, by embarrassing vulnerable teenagers. A couple making out in a drive-in! Horrors! What will these kids think of next to destroy civilization?
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Old 05-17-2019, 07:36 AM
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I'm surprised drive-ins didn't last. They had a lot of advantages over indoor theaters.
It wasn't the opulent indoor theaters that killed the drive-in. It was the VCR. A home is even more comfortable than a luxury theater.
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Old 05-17-2019, 07:43 AM
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My folks didn't like drive-ins, but I did go with friend's parents. First drive-in movie was Robin and the 7 Hoods, with Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis Jr.

The drive-in had a chimpanzee that lived in an enclosure below the screen.
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Old 05-17-2019, 07:49 AM
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I saw Star Wars at a drive-in, and Tron, and many other movies (Tora, Tora, Tora leaps to mind).

Parents could take little kids along and just let them sleep in the back seat - a nice feature.
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Old 05-17-2019, 07:54 AM
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Then I went to grad school in Utah, and found that drive-ins were still a Big Deal theater (I understand that they were in the South, as well). Salt Lake city seemed stuck in a Time Warp in many ways -- kids cruised Main Street on Saturday nights, there was a Head Shop above the Art Cinema, and Drive-Ins were still popular and well-patronized. There was an octoplex there that had a central projecting booth-and-snack bar while it sent films out in eight equally angularly spaced directions. I took a date to a double feature of The Fly and Predator, and went by myself to see some other flicks that hadn't been shown at the indoor theaters near my apartment...
Cosmic Areoplane, (the head shop, book/record store) Blue Mouse Theater, Redwood Drive-In.

(the CA was actually next door to the Blue Mouse, which showed "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" every weekend for something like 15 years running.)
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Old 05-17-2019, 08:09 AM
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The one I went to as a kid is still there.

I remember when they made the major technological leap from the speakers you hang on your car window to being able to tune in to the sound on your car radio.
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Old 05-17-2019, 08:27 AM
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I was born in '81, and the one and only movie I saw in a drive-in was Jurassic Park in the summer of '93. There was a drive-in theater about 20 miles south of us and my parents decided to take us to see that particular movie in that particular screen; I'm not sure why as it was the only time they did so.

I remember my dad didn't want to risk running down the car battery to listen to the dialogue (it was transmitted on an FM station—no wired speakers) so we bought an ancient battery-powered ghetto blaster to place between the seats to listen to the dialogue.

That theater closed in 2000 or 2001. The screen was taken down and now the place is used by a truck driving school to park their big rigs.
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Old 05-17-2019, 08:30 AM
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Our town still had one in the eighties. I was in high school then and my boyfriend and I went to see I Spit On Your Grave. Nice.
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Old 05-17-2019, 08:33 AM
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As a kid, I remember wearing pajamas and sitting the back seat. The actual drive-in was torn down decades ago. Don't remember what I saw, other than discovering that the feature we really wanted to see was usually the second film, so we'd be too tired to stay up for it.

As a teen, I remember trying to sneak someone in. He was caught. The kicker was that he was a relative of the drive-in owner, so he could get a free admission any time he wanted.

There were still a few operating around here when I became a parent, and we would go as a family. Most memorable was the time I had been working for eight days straight and we went to one. I couldn't stay up past the first film.

The big feature for us was the food. The snack bar had some pretty good options. There are still three operating in our area these days, but we haven't gon since my daughter moved out.
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Old 05-17-2019, 08:42 AM
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Heh. Memories.

Saw 'Pretty Maids All in a Row' with Mom and Dad. Staring Rock Hudson and Angie Dickenson. They thought it would be a 'Who dun it mystery'. Was closer to soft core porn. Yeah, we where all quite uncomfortable.

And I had always wanted a dirt bike as a kid. Had mini bikes but needed something bigger. A motorcycle movie came out and I figured if I could only get my Dad to see it and see how great motorcycles where I'd have one next weekend. We saw Easy Rider. It did not work out as planned.

Another time, my best bud and I went camping on a whim. Did that a lot, always ready to go. Camp site set up by 2pm and ended up bored. Decided to break camp drive back into town and go to the drive in. 'Airplane!' Now that was great.
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Old 05-17-2019, 08:50 AM
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Went to the drive-ins a lot in high school. Cheap to get in, dark and a place to make out without ushers cramping your moves. A buddy used to own an old Rambler that had front seats that dropped back level with the rear seats. Turned the car into a queen-sized bed. Perfect drive-in car!
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Old 05-17-2019, 08:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Royal Nonesutch View Post
Cosmic Areoplane, (the head shop, book/record store) Blue Mouse Theater, Redwood Drive-In.

(the CA was actually next door to the Blue Mouse, which showed "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" every weekend for something like 15 years running.)
The entrance was next door. Although the Cosmic Aeroplane had a downstairs used-book section, I think it was also partially over the Blue Mouse.

They only showed Rocky Horror Picture Show on Fridays at midnight*, but they showed it for a long time. The responses in SLC were different from those elsewhere in the country ("Not the Family Home Evening Book!" when The Criminologist pulls out the case file).

I haven't been back in years, but apparently they're both gone, now. I still miss them.

And, yeah, the Redwood.




*The Blue Mouse had a tiny marquee, so all they could fit on it about the midnight show was "Rocky". When first saw it I wondered why they were showing Sylvester Stallone's film at midnight.


The Blue Mouse also showed Harold and Maude every three months, at the end of their quarterly cycle. They also showed the silent film Trapped by the Mormons regularly. I never did get to see the stop-motion triumph attack of the Giant Brine Shrimp there. I found a film by that name on YouTube, but I'm not sure if it's the same film. Really.
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Old 05-17-2019, 09:18 AM
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This thread is so much fun to read! Makes me want to put on my jammies and go sit in my car with popcorn and stream something on my kindle.
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Originally Posted by TokyoBayer View Post
You have my parents! I tell my kids sometimes things about my childhood, such as that the first time I ate in a restaurant was when I was 16 and my sister way paying. We sometimes had hamburgers but it was always to go. We did take vacations, but my father was always really tense, so I donít any have good memories of them. My sister simply stopped taking them as an adult. I was in my 40s before it hit me that people go on vacation because itís fun.
OMG! Maybe we are related! I always wanted a sibling. Does your screen name indicate a connection to Japan? We were stationed in Japan when I was a baby, so maybe...

Quote:
Anyway, we went to the drive-in a couple of times. Once when I was really small, they took us to see Bambi and apparently it was pretty scary for a four-year-old. We may have gone another time after that, but for father who grew up in the depression on a dirt farm in central Utah, movies were a waste of money.
Like most kids of our generation, I suffered the Bambi trauma. Also the Dumbo trauma (when his mom is locked up and hangs her trunk out through the bars and sings to him... ).

Anything that required engaging with life was too much trouble and too costly for my parents. I didn't have a birthday party until I threw one for myself when I turned 21. Sigh. The worst thing is that I fear I'm turning into my parents, but that's another thread.
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Old 05-17-2019, 10:06 AM
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When I was a little kid, in the early '70s, we'd go to the drive-in on occcasion -- as several others here have posted, my parents would put my sister and me in our pajamas, and we'd fall asleep during the main feature.

The one film that I distinctly remember them going to see was A New Leaf (a 1971 comedy with Walter Matthau and Elaine May); I remember watching a Pink Panther short before the film, and the cool General Cinemas intro that ran in between the features.

My family stopped going to the drive-in not too long after that (probably because my parents could no longer count on my sister and me to fall asleep). The last time that I was at a drive-in was the summer of '82 -- I was a teenager, and I went with a couple of friends to see a couple of cheesy B movies, one of which was a sexed-up version of Alien called Inseminoid.
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Old 05-17-2019, 10:11 AM
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Originally Posted by kenobi 65 View Post
When I was a little kid, in the early '70s, we'd go to the drive-in on occcasion -- as several others here have posted, my parents would put my sister and me in our pajamas, and we'd fall asleep during the main feature.

The one film that I distinctly remember them going to see was A New Leaf (a 1971 comedy with Walter Matthau and Elaine May); I remember watching a Pink Panther short before the film, and the cool General Cinemas intro that ran in between the features.

My family stopped going to the drive-in not too long after that (probably because my parents could no longer count on my sister and me to fall asleep). The last time that I was at a drive-in was the summer of '82 -- I was a teenager, and I went with a couple of friends to see a couple of cheesy B movies, one of which was a sexed-up version of Alien called Inseminoid.
In the summer of 1982 I was living in Binghamton NY and watching a lot of movies. I went to go see John Carpenter's The Thing (which I sat through twice) and Tobe Hooper's Funhouse at the Vestal Drive-In in Vestal, NY*. I also saw a re-run of Raiders of the Lost Ark and The Gong Show Movie at another drive-in. I sat on the hood of my car through that one.


*Vestal N.Y. was the nearby small town with the drive-in theater. I always thought that the name of their sports teams ought to be The Vestal Virgins.
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Old 05-17-2019, 10:20 AM
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There was one in Anchorage when I was a kid. It was called "The Billiken Drive-in" and it was way out in east Anchorage. Went there a lot once I got my license. It showed mostly 'B' movies. Snuck in some friends in the trunk one time and didn't get caught, and went there for a movie instead of going to the Senior Prom. It's long gone now, and an 8-plex cinema went up in its place. I also took two of my kids to a drive-in in California in the early 70s. My eldest still remembers it.

Here in Portland, they do a drive-in during the summer with an inflatable screen. It doesn't work very well, as they broadcast the sound over an AM frequency. Problem is, it's poor equipment and you can't really hear the dialog. There is also a series of free outdoor movies at one of the downtown squares.
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Old 05-17-2019, 10:20 AM
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Originally Posted by enipla View Post
Heh. Memories.

Saw 'Pretty Maids All in a Row' with Mom and Dad. Staring Rock Hudson and Angie Dickenson. They thought it would be a 'Who dun it mystery'. Was closer to soft core porn. Yeah, we where all quite uncomfortable.

.
Pretty Maids All in a Row was written and produced by an obscure guy named Gene Roddenberry in 1971.


Note that this was two years after Star Trek.

I've only seen parts of it, but what I've seen gibes with your description.

Apparently it lost money, which forced Rodenberry to go on the college lecture circuit (where I attended one of his lectures). He then went on to try another TV franchise, with three variations on a future earth , starting with Genesis II. That gave us Mariette Hartley with two belly buttons, which made it all worthwhile.
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Old 05-17-2019, 10:40 AM
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No one else's parents ever made them hide in the trunk or lay down behind the front seats and cover you will a blanket to avoid paying for you?? Maybe because we were so many...............
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Old 05-17-2019, 11:05 AM
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I saw a few horror movies in 1985 or 1986 at a drive-in in Iowa. It was already dying out by that time.
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Old 05-17-2019, 02:15 PM
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We used to go to a nearby small town drive-in with our daughter when we were at the cottage in the summer. It's still in operation.
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Old 05-17-2019, 03:44 PM
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My first drive-in movie was Patton (on its initial release). We were a bit late, so we ended up in the first couple rows of cars. The opening scene is pretty impressive when it's that large. (Too bad the little window-mounted speaker couldn't match the visual.)

The management of that particular drive-in had a very good attitude, too. As long as you "kept it in the car," you could do just about anything you cared to. No BS about bringing your own snacks, drinks, booze, pot, or whatever.
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Old 05-17-2019, 03:53 PM
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Memories? They still exist. They aren't as common but they exist.

I remember watching the dark knight in 2008 at the drive in. It was nice. I'd bring a lawn chair and set it up next to my car and watch it like that.
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Old 05-17-2019, 03:57 PM
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The first few times I went to the movies it was a Disney picture or double feature at the drive in. I remember when I was seven and got to go for the first time. I was thrilled--I'd expected to be left home with a sitter like I'd always been before. I felt so mature.

The picture was The Million Dollar Duck, and I thought it was awesome.
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Old 05-17-2019, 04:16 PM
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I'm sure I went to a few, but don't recall any specific memories, other than driving through Ohio in the 1980s and being able to partially see the screen of a drive-in off the highway that showed adult movies. Looking at maps, it would have been somewhere between Columbus and Toledo, maybe off highway 23?
I was a child at the time and it certainly peaked my interest of looking out the window of the car while driving through Ohio at night.
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Old 05-17-2019, 04:27 PM
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Any Pittsburghers remember The Dependable Drive In? They had mostly only X rated fare. When I was 17, we got a case of beer and we went to The Dependable. Five minutes after parking, the kid who drove saw his neighbors a few cars over. He freaked. We tried to convince him that they'd be just as embarrassed to be seen there by him, but we end up leaving.
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Old 05-17-2019, 05:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aceplace57 View Post
I'm surprised drive-ins didn't last. They had a lot of advantages over indoor theaters.
Drive-ins require a substantial amount of land. In most places the land could more profitably be used for something else.
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Old 05-17-2019, 05:51 PM
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I'm just a few years younger than ThelmaLou, but similar memories. We used to go all the time in the family Corvair. The back seat folded down and all of us kids fit in there. I remember being really little and wearing only my tighty-whities, which was fine as long as I stayed in the car with my pillow and blanket. But if I had to run to the bathroom (barefoot, of course, on the rocky ground) I can remember people hootin' and hollerin' at the skinny little kid scampering by in just his underwear.

We would always make popcorn at home to take. I also remember we would always burn one of those mosquito coils (still available!) on the dashboard to keep the bugs away. I can also remember when we were little falling asleep before the show was over. When we got home mom and dad had to roust us enough to get us into the house and in bed.

As we got older, we moved into bigger vehicles (Suburban) and did the back-in maneuver. My parents would bring lawn chairs and sit outside the car, while us kids sat in the back.

As for the movies, the only one I can remember seeing as a little kid is She. It left an impression on me with the lady in flames! Later on, I remember Burt Reynolds type movies. As a high-schooler, my friends and I only went a couple of times that I recall. Eventually, the place descended into playing some XXX movies every so often, which could be seen from the freeway.

Oddly, (to me, anyway) somewhere along the way I developed a real love of cinema, but it's hard to imagine that it started with drive-in movies?
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