Thursday, September 4, 2008

Jackson Triplex

In Jackson Heights, a hidden treasure is found behind the marquee of the Jackson "1-2-3" Triplex movie theater.

Called "the best Cinema Treasure theater still operating in Queens" by Cinema Treasures, the theater dates back to the 1920s when its silent films were accompanied by an orchestra and a Wurlitzer organ that apparently had the ability to effect the sounds of horse hooves, steamboat whistles, and fire gongs.

photo source

The interior of the lobby looks much like it did back when these old photos were taken. Today, instead of organ music, the movies come accompanied with Spanish subtitles. And, upstairs, you will find a billiards parlor.

photo source


Anonymous said...

Have you seen a movie there lately? It's dirty, the staff are rude, floors are sticky. Most of the moviegoers don't speak any english, talks, texts during the movie, are rowdy, have no manners, uncivil, and act like they own the place and it's their privileged to watch a movie there (much like the yunnies, except that these are immigrant narcissists). You really think the neighborhood would care if that theater gets torn down and for a multiplex or a bank or pharmacy? They'd probably celebrate it.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like the same criticism of David's bagels.

Sticky floors in a movie theater? Who ever heard of such?

Anonymous said...

I like the theater. It is huge! Have you ever seen anything so grand? They need a government grant or foundation help to get it up to it's past glory.
It's clearly not an IMAX experience, but it's a jackson heights experience. I have never witnessed anyone rude to me, just the opposite.
If you don't want sticky floors, then get your $5 cokes in a theater in forrest hills.

boweryboogie said...

i miss the single theaters with ginormous screens.

Anonymous said...

This place would make a great Starbucks or Duane Reade.

Anonymous said...

Jackson Heights needs to be nuked, and all the illegals deported.

Anonymous said...

Elmhurst! the Jackson is in Elmhurst!

NYC taxi photo said...

I got to find this place and play a game of billiards in that beautiful space!


Nick said...

So it seems that the yunnies have again taken to bombing us with repellent anonymous postings. You know what, fellas? Go right ahead. Feel free to say whatever you want. You see, unlike most of you, we're generally fine with you - we're not threatened by your mere presence. The difference between us is that attitude of yours. What we want is a municipal equilibrium of sorts, in that everyone is entitled to their own space and that people are also free to choose to interact with the other spaces as well. The great strength of the city is in its diversity, as everyone from Whitman to LaGuardia can attest.

You, however, seem to want to devour everything different, be it for profit or ideology or something else. You may indulge in the rich tapestry of urban life every now and then but you eventually seek the comfort of the familiar. This in itself is by no means a negative thing - that is, until you decide that the familiarity and comfort you know needs to be felt by others, whether or not they actually feel the same way about it. Maybe you're not even doing it intentionally. Perhaps it's just something that can't be escaped in our modern culture that wishes to put emotional comfort above all else. Whatever the case is, it is destroying our city and our country.

If you want to go ahead and dismiss what I have to say as nonsense, go right ahead. There's enough room in the city for both of us, if we respect each other. If that's not acceptable, however, then I leave you with the words of the patriots of yore: Don't Tread on Me. We're not giving up on our city just yet.

Anonymous said...

I have to agree with BoweryBoogie and the One Screeners. I grew up going to the Jackson Triplex and am one of those "immigrants" who moved to the city in the late 70's as a youngin and let me tell you, Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark was mindblowing as a kid on that screen.

Yeah there's gum on the ground, they also used to let you smoke your a$# off in those theatres too. Heck, I remember the Colony down the street from the Jackson where the auditoriums would wreak of Mary Jane, and this was the 80's mind you, not that long ago. But to the eyes of many, an era that seems to have been forgotten and conveniently swept under the rug....only to creep back up to the surface since know what....

So to Anonymous complaining about people acting rude and such...welcome back to the hood.

Jackofwits said...


Couldn't have said it better. Anonymous , move...elsewhere, Idaho, I don't care and you won't be missed. You are NOT the diversity that makes New York City GREAT!

And as for the Jackson Triplex, Its run on a show string, but its clean and I've never had any problems. Assholes who paid money so they could ignore the movie and text in the dark aren't only at this theatre. Spanish subtitles, yes, but that is much of the culture that lives in this neighborhood. If you want a cheaper ticket than a Manhattan theatre, and save on the subway fare, I've never found subtitles distracting. Especially during an action film that is lite on the dialogue. The side theatres, parts of the former balcony, are narrow and unusually shapped, but your here to look at a movie screen, not to go for a walk.

I would encourage anyone to go to the Jackson Triplex.

I do miss The Eagle Bollywood theatre down on 74th. It was mis-managed, and is now a food court. I'll never go in there. At least the exterior architecture largely still exists.

S said...

It's been reported there are plans to demolish this classic theatre in the next few weeks:
How can the exterior at least be saved / preserved, like NYC did with the Hearst Enterprises bldg??