The Riverview

The Riverview Theater was built in 1948 and from the looks of it, has not aged a bit. It’s old school. But old school like a good James Brown record. Its style is nostalgically suave, and it packs enough heat to rock with any new-school punk.

“The theater is technically about as up-to-date as any multiplex but we also have tried to retain the character and original architecture of the place,” owner Loren Williams said.

Indeed, while the single-screen movie palace is equipped with digital sound and stadium seating, the decor is most striking. The neon, backlit paneling that outlines the vast, 700-seat auditorium is so awe inspiring that you almost expect to hear an orchestra tuning up as you walk in for the first time. But no, you’ve come to this place to see a movie.

The Riverview is a second-run theater, which means it shows movies that have just finished their initial theatrical release and are ready to go one more time at a discounted price. Since the theater only has one screen it often plays several different movies a day. And it’s an eclectic mix, such as small indie films, like “Whale Rider,” and Hollywood blockbusters, like “Pirates of the Caribbean.”

All this for $2.

And of course, the vintage aspect of the theater isn’t just restricted to the auditorium. No, no, no. The fashionable, mid-century design floods into the lobby as well.

“We tried to keep some unique features preserved that aren’t necessarily available elsewhere,” Williams said.

The spacious lobby gives filmlovers the chance to ponti

ficate in comfort. Patrons are encouraged to lounge on the curvy,

“Jetsons”-style furniture before the show. The marble tables, the oversized lamps and the sofas, which have been reupholstered throughout the years, have all been at the Riverview since 1948. Oh, and then there is the popcorn. No flavored, buttery syrup here. Nope, only real butter at the Riverview.

This neighborhood theater is that rare one-screen movie house that has stayed afloat amongst the ever-changing, ever-expanding facade of the American cineplex.

“Now that it has survived to this point, it truly is a throwback to a different time,” Williams said. “A lot of people appreciate the fact that it’s just different; it’s not the same thing as every other multiplex in town.”

Now Showing:
“Pirates of the Caribbean”
Coming soon:
“Seabiscuit”
“Winged Migration”
“Once Upon a Time in Mexico”
“Matchstick Men”

Visit www.riverviewtheater.com for a complete list of showings.