April 23, 2007

Lloyd Center Cinemas (1510 NE Multnomah Street)

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Last Saturday I was in the mood to see a movie. I had a choice. I was out at my parents' house in West Linn. I could stop by Bridgeport Village in Lake Oswego to catch a flick at their super-new, super-swanky Regal Cinemas. (The faux balcony in the lobby is particularly ugly and pretentious and hilarious at the same time, sort of like the huge statue of battling stallions that stands at the gates of an especially wealthy neighborhood in West Linn, where some of the Portland Trail Blazers are rumored to reside.) Bridgeport Village is clean, comfortable, but awfully rich-soccer-mom-y-with-super-coordinated-sweatsuits-and-sneakers-and-A-line-haircuts. For that, I was not in the mood.

I needed someplace where I could put my feet up, sit by myself and not be bothered or feel stared at. Exactly. I went to the Lloyd Center Cinemas in Northeast Portland. Not the greatest part of town. Not the worst part of town. Yes, there are multiple security guards at the theater. Yes, the floors are kind of sticky and I often feel like showering after attending a movie at this theater. But on a lazy Saturday, when my hair has been rained on just a little too much and my mascara is just a little too smeared and worn off and maybe I just discovered that I have been walking around with a big spot on my shirt all day and I want to check out a movie (Hot Fuzz) that no one else I know would want to see, this is the place to go.

When I walked in, the theater was full, with seats available sporadically until I reached the front two rows, where they were almost all empty. In the front row, a guy was laying down over about 2 or 3 seats, feet up and everything. I sat right behind him. During the movie, I could hear his contagious belly laugh (he was laying down the whole time) and it made me laugh even more. After it was over, he stood up to put on his coat and started talking, apparently to me, since there was no one else around us. "That was freaking hilarious. When they came on with all their British accents and everything I was like 'oh man!' but then it was freaking hilarious!" That it was. And so was he.

Watching a movie alone in such good company is totally worth the sticky floors and minor threat of violence. Hot Fuzz is really funny. But you should be a little sleep deprived and not feeling snobby about movies when you watch it. Maybe you should even stretch out over a few theater seats.


love.boxes said...

You've made an excellent point. Plus, it's no fun to watch a really funny movie with people who don't laugh at the funny parts.

Aimee said...

Reading your blog makes me homesick! I used to live in Portland, in Sullivan's Gulch actually, about six blocks from the Lloyd center theater, and I always felt it was a bit sketchy there. Now I live in Sacramento, and man, Lloyd Center hoodlums are child's play compared to here. And I don't even venture into the bad areas of town! Eek.

I miss Pix and Pambiche and all the beer and shopping at New Seasons and two for one night at the Winterhawks games like nobody's business! And the Laurelhurst theater--seriously, movies and beer? Why has this not caught on with the rest of the country?! Oy. I need to move back.

Ellen said...

Ah... The Lloyd Center. I too have many great memories of seeing movies by myself at that theatre. Magnolia... to name one. Still one of my all time favorite movies.