Oahu's only discount theater to close

Allene Uesugi
Allene Uesugi
Kalehua Oliveira
Kalehua Oliveira
Star Cleaver
Star Cleaver
Dr. Jim Deluze
Dr. Jim Deluze

By Zahid Arab - bio | email

HONOLULU (KHNL)- After nearly 15-years, a local discount movie theater will see its final curtain in August. With its closure, 40 employees will be without a job.

Movie-goers say sitting in Restaurant Row's Hollywood Theaters is sweet. Not only do you get to see a movie, but you paid just over a buck for your ticket. It's now closing and people are mad because in two months the theater will disappear.

"We're going to watch Witch Mountain, yay!," said Waianae Resident Allene Uesugi.

There's the flick and of course tasty snacks.

"Gummy bears, and licorice and popcorn," said Uesugi.

On a budget, Hollywood Theaters is the place Allene Uesugi always takes her 8 foster kids.

"We even brought your birdie to the movies."

But, 'now showing' is disappointment, as audiences learn the theatre shuts down in August.

"I'm very disturbed about it" said Uesugi.

"I think it's kind of junk," said Honolulu Resident Kalehua Oliveira.

"It really depresses us because this is one of the only inexpensive entertainment around besides the beach, which is free," said Uesugi.

Owners say terminating the lease was a business decision, after getting an multi-million dollar offer they couldn't refuse for the property.

Star Cleaver says it costs about $60 to see a movie down the street, here, it's about $7.00. Admission is $1.25 during the week and $1.50 on weekends.

"Not that much people have money," said Honolulu Resident Star Cleaver.

About 40-mostly part-time employees will have to find new work.

"We have stores shutting down and I know economic times are hard and now they're going to shut down the discount theatre," said Honolulu Resident Dr. Jim Deluze.

"A lot of people come here to watch movies, they don't want to wait until it comes out on DVD," said Oliveira.

The lines will eventually end and all that financially strapped families like Allene's can do, is adjust. The theater's last movie will show during the daytime August 9th. With the closure of Hollywood Theaters, Kress Cinemas in Hilo will be the only discount theatre left in the entire state.