Saturday, December 26, 2015

Langley Theatre

Man, the Crossroads area shopping centers used to be cool.  The one where the new transit center is going up used to house the Langley Theatre, a thousand-seat Streamline Moderne baby built in 1952 complete with a soundproof-glass encased crying room for parents (i.e. mothers) who wanted to go catch the latest Montgomery Cliff flick but didn't want to completely neglect their parental responsibilities.  The theater was even equipped in the '70s with the gimmicky Sensurround technology for movies such as "Earthquake" that benefited from the use of low-frequency bass speakers to rumble theater patrons during appropriate moments of the film.  The location was actually a showcase theater for local chain K/B and also featured exclusive first-run engagements of films such as "The Godfather" and "Star Trek: The Motion Picture" in the '70s.  Unfortunately, as with many movie theaters, it was twinned in the early '80s in an unsuccessful attempt to keep up with more modern multi-screen complexes and eventually closed in the early '90s.

There's now a discount clothing and uniform store at the location.  A few stores down, there are three storefronts adjacent to New Hampshire Avenue that are fenced off and look to be abandoned, if not condemned.  There's also a row of shops along New Hampshire that instead of facing the road have no entrances or even windows in that direction and instead have an industrial-sized dumpster greeting new arrivals to the transit center in that direction.

Talk about the last picture show!   

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