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Roger Ebert Reflects On Chicago's Classic Movie Houses In Chicago Magazine

By Chuck Sudo in Arts & Entertainment on Jan 23, 2013 11:15PM

Photo credit: Kymberly Janisch

If there is anyone in Chicago who can remember when theaters like the Uptown, Granada and Oriental were temples for the Church of Film, it’s Roger Ebert, who recounts how he used those and other theaters to learn about the city in an essay in Chicago magazine.

Ebert notes that some, like the Oriental, Bismarck (now the Cadillac Palace) and the Chicago Theatre are now the foundation for the Loop’s theatrical district. We’ll add the Portage, Music Box and Logan as examples of old movie houses still thriving today. Others like the Uptown and the Ramova sit vacant and decaying, while theaters like the Central Park and Avalon are now churches.

For us, Ebert’s words are reinforced by the gorgeous photography of Eric Holubow, who captures the state of five of these old movie palaces in current day. Take one look at the Uptown’s interior and wonder what it would be like to see a movie, or a concert, inside.