I can remember the first time I went to a movie … by myself.
Mom gave me the money, and made sure that I knew the direction and sent me off.
For an 8 year old, it seemed like a true journey to a distant land.
I was to walk to the end of the block, go right. Mom had me hold my money in my right hand so I wouldn’t forget which hand was my right. From there I went another couple of blocks and somewhere in my trip, I think I walked down an alley.
Yes, at the time, it was a little scary, but exciting.
Years later, Mom told me she followed to make sure I got the theatre … even sat in the back watching over me while I was lost in my film.
It was the 1955 Disney movie, “Lady and The Tramp”.
My parents didn’t take us to a lot of movies so when we went, it was a true treat.
I think Mom liked the movies more than Dad, but I remember a couple of movies that he really liked.
One was the first 3-D movie, I had ever seen.
It was a Western and Dad even got Granddad to join us; he thought movies were a full waste of time and money, but Dad convinced him to go.
There was a bar fight, and one of the villains threw a beer bottle at a good guy; that 3-D gimmick worked as Granddad swore and tried to duck behind the seat while Dad laughed at him.
The only other movie I remember my Dad was excited to see was at a drive-in.
He loaded us into the car, and of course, we played on the swing set in front of the screen until the movie started.
Dad was completely locked in on that 1958 movie; it starred Robert Mitchum who was running moonshine through Kentucky and Tennessee — Thunder Road.
I do remember Dad later trying to get Granddad to go see that movie, but he refused, saying something like, That’s too much like real life.
Now, there’s a story that I never got Granddad to tell me.
I’m sure that when and where you saw certain movies are burned into your memory because they became not just an experience, but a part of your life.
Some of the old movies are just as good today as yesteryear and in many cases, better than what you see on the screen today.
And of course, you are going to spend a lot more money now days.
Dad use to tell me that when he was a kid, Granddad would give him a dime for the movie and say:
You can go the movie; you can get a popcorn and soda, but when you come home …I want my change.