For some reason or another, Austin Kennedy and I were talking about a couple of former General Cinema theaters here in the Twin Cities. If you remember much about General Cinema, you know that they were the more expensive of the theaters (but pale in comparison with today’s box office prices). Anytime I went to a GC theater, it was a last resort because it was much cheaper to go to the family-owned cinemas in the suburbs than the much more corporate-run GC. I can still remember seeing the original “Batman” at the Northtown General Cinema three times in the summer of ’89. To know me is to know I am a huge sucker for nostalgia (which certainly explains why I turn into a giddy little schoolgirl at the thought of Film Geek Central’s 1985 Project in 2013 — more on that later).
Anyway, thanks to YouTube, we are able to preserve and continue to enjoy the past in ways that would have many people shaking their heads in confusion and others (like me) looking back with a twinkly gaze at how much cooler going to the movies used to be, before the age of 20- and 30-plex theaters. A time when you had to drive halfway across town to see the Next Big Thing. Nowadays, every movie is at every theater. That’s no fun. Convenient, but lacking the fun of experiencing other places and popcorn.
I encourage you to watch with certain admiration the goofy fun of the Candy Band policy trailer that ran in the late ’80s/early ’90s on General Cinema screens before they went belly up. It takes me back to a time when I was a much younger man, when moviegoing was still a Saturday night tradition before the cinema of today became something of a passable time-killer.