Info Desk | About the Theater Reviews

For this issue (since I'm the only one who knew what I was trying to do) I've written all of the reviews myself, and some are kind of sketchy - some theaters I haven't been to in months. By all means, submit any details you have on theaters, and help get these documents as complete as possible. Just use the handy theater info submission form.

Notes on the Reviews

Here's the format of the detail listings:
Theater Name [Sometimes includes the chain.]
Chain [So you can find the right ad for listings]
123 Anystreet, Los Angeles
Recording: [number] / Voice: [person number, if available]
Theater Type: [first run/second run/art/revival/special; single/multiplex]
Directions: [info on locating the theater]
Parking Tips: [where to park, if it isn't obvious]
Ticket Prices: [adult/student/child/senior/matinee/other?]
Theaters: [Number of screens, and if known, the capacities and sound formats]
Comments: [General notes on the theater(s) - fairly freeform section. Comments from multiple people can be added here and accredited.]

Certain terms are used as shorthand for screen listings:

  • THX - the theater is THX-certified, which means it meets tight standards for sound reproduction and projection quality.
  • 70mm - the theater is capable of showing 70mm prints. (Rare these days, sadly.)
  • Mono - theaters are assumed to be Dolby Stereo equipped unless listed otherwise. Mono theaters can only play sound through one center speaker. Dolby Stereo is a four-channel sound format - Center, Left, Right, and a mono Surround - that is essentially the standard of the industry.
  • Ultra Stereo - another stereo sound format.
  • SR - Dolby Spectral Recording; a four-channel analog sound format like Dolby Stereo - Center, Left, Right, and Surround - with very clean sound and channel separation, mostly from better noise reduction. See the Dolby page.
  • SRD - the theater is equipped to show prints encoded with Dolby Spectral Recording Digital - consider it a CD over a tape. It's a six channel system - Center, Left, Right, Left Surround, Right Surround, and Subwoofer.
  • DTS - the theater has Digital Theater Sound brand equipment. This system is reasonably portable and usually you can't be sure which screen at a multiplex has it without checking their ad in the paper or asking. Also a six-channel system.
  • SDDS - the theater has Sony Dynamic Digital Sound equipment. Also fairly portable. SDDS is an eight-channel system, but some theaters only have six channels available, and very few films are mixed with the extra channels. (They're Left-Center and Right-Center, putting five channels behind the screen.)
For more technical details, see the Movieville Theater Tech pages on both projection and sound.

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I can remember a time when where we went to the movies was just as important as the movies we went to see .... From the moment moviegoers arrived to buy their tickets, there was a sense of something special, a feeling that to step inside was to enter another time and place. - Gene Kelly