Sunday, May 15, 2011

The Beverly

The next time you’re walking from the subway on Church Avenue, make sure to make a left into the "T-Mobile Store".

Take out that two dollars you have in your pocket, and hand it to the lady in the ticket booth on the side where that guy sells all the hats
and gloves.

She will probably not smile and give you a small "Admit One" ticket. You will then walk up the long entranceway that leads inside the Beverly and immediately start to smell stale popcorn. But not to worry, because you see them popping it in the machine on the other side of the heavy wooden doors.

As you open the door to the go inside, a young man will be standing there to take your ticket. You hand it to him and he rips it in two, one half goes into a wooden box, the other you put in your pocket.

Hey, how about some fresh popcorn and a Coke? You walk up to the concession stand and immediately notice a roach under the glass, walking upside down. You pass on the popcorn and opt for "Snow Caps" instead. You hand the woman a dollar and wait for your change, you think for a second about telling her you saw a roach.

But hey, this is the Beverly and Church Avenue isn't exactly Madison. So you just walk away and up the ramp that leads to the main theater. And there it is again, no matter how many times you've been to the Beverly the chandelier that’s bigger than a house is just beautiful as ever, hanging from the ceiling. It must have over a thousand lights, and hundreds and hundreds of crystals. It simply gleams like a star in the darkness, even though it's covered with dust.

The 70's have not been good to the Beverly and you wonder what that place was like when your Mom was young. Did the screen still have that giant stain on it? Was the floor always sticky? were the seats always torn?. Suddenly the lights dim to black, the screen awakens and the movie starts.

You just sit there staring at that big magnificent chandelier, its crystals still sparkling in the darkness, and you can't help but imagine a Beverly that you never knew, a long, long time ago.

Ron Lopez


Elliot James said...

Many good memories of the Bev. Kids in cities today will never experience that kind of movie watching or the attachement felt for the long theaters...the Culver, that entire theater strip on Flatbush ave. Incredible.

Rala556 said...

what do you think happened to it?

Baba O' Riley said...

I remember sitting in the Beverly watching some long forgotten movie in the late 70s during a summer afternoon and getting the feeling a pair of eyes was on me. The pair of eyes belong to a siamese cat that decided that it wanted to sit next to me. I said hello to it and it jump away. At the time The cat and myself were the only ones watching the movie.

Deena said...

The last movie I saw at the Beverly was 1980's Popeye! I remember that theater well and was disappointed when it closed. I'm long since gone but my parents still live on OP. The neighborhood has changed quite a bit!