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Which film did I see?

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  • Which film did I see?

    Back in the carefree days of my youth, I somehow had enough free cash to go to the cinema a lot. It hardly seems possible now that mortgages, bills, groceries and children take every last penny. When I was in my mid-teens I used to find myself in the West End wandering about trying to choose which films to watch and I recall on one occasion I went to a lunchtime screening on one side of Leicester Square, then wandered across to the cinema on the opposite side to see another straight away. I've managed to forget which two films they were... but I think one of them was "The Wild Geese"(1978) which I think was the one at The Leicester Square Theatre. If I'm correct, then this was the second film of my day, the first being something from a cinema on the North side of Leicester Square, perhaps the one called the Warner West End (although maybe it wasn't called that then). I wonder if one of you kind people with access to the appropriate sources can tell me what else was playing at the time... so that I can put my memory down with the correct details when I write my autobiography (working title "Who the bloody hell would want to read this").

    Being a young lad wandering the streets of the big city was not without its dangers. I was once settling down to see "Battlestar Gallactica"(1979) in Sensurround at the Empire (IIRC) at a matinee with around 20 people in the audience, when as the lights went down a shifty chap came and sat next to me. No-one in any of the seats around us for row upon row. I thought "that's odd", until he started trying to stroke my thigh. I got up and moved a dozen seats away and he sloped off to try his luck elsewhere. I wasn't going to miss a movie just because some idiot tried it on. But later I did wonder whether I had somehow looked like I was inviting the attention.

  • #2
    The Shout was showing at the Warner West End the month The Wild Geese premiered (July 1978):

    Click image for larger version

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    Alan Bates


    • #3
      hmmmm, not that one then. Perhaps it was the Odeon, or the Empire...


      • #4
        Empire - Saturday Night Fever; Odeon Leicester Square - Revenge of the Pink Panther


        • #5
          Ooh. Well, I must have seen both of those at some point, but I was hoping to have a eureka moment and neither of those opened a box in my memory. More likely to be the Revenge of the Pink Panther I suppose. I was around 14-15 so that would probably have been my choice. I think I went for Wild Geese because I enjoyed War movies at the time.


          • #6
            I remember seeing Eyes of Laura Mars in Leicester Square around summer 1978 – could it have been that?
            Last edited by agutterfan; 12th May 2017, 02:42 PM.


            • #7
              July 10th, 1978

              Empire Leicester Sq.
              Saturday Night Fever
              I Wanna Hold Your Hand

              Odeon Leicester Sq.
              Close Encounters of the Third Kind

              Prince Charles
              High Anxiety

              Warner West End
              The Shout
              Game of Death
              A Piece of the Action
              The Goodbye Girl

              I'm not sure of the exact date but by September 18th, Wild Geese had moved to the Warner
              and F.I.S.T. was playing at Leicester Sq. Theatre
              Last edited by Wearysloth; 10th May 2017, 03:54 PM.


              • #8
                Thanks for finding the information, I haven't worked through my brain well enough yet, but I am very grateful for the help.

                Nope, not Laura Mars. I'll get back to you. I'm going to look at a list of every film released that year to see if something clicks.


                • #9
                  Looking through this page, I see a lot of films came out. A lot that were good, some great.. and a lot that I saw once and would never choose to see again. My mind is all a jumble now as to which ones I saw on first release and which were added to my brain at a later date. I'm also a little embarassed to note which ones I definitely saw in a cinema and which I came across years later - the quality of my choices shows a suitable teenage penchant for action and adventure instead of character and depth. I remember seeing "The Swarm" when it wasn't described as the worst film ever made.


                  • #10
                    There was also the Swiss Centre complex just around the corner from the Empire, the four-in-one mini-screen. My records don't quite reach 1978 very easily.

                    (We haven't seen a picture of your thigh yet StoneAgeMan, so we don't know if it was that that clinched it......Memorable cinema touch-up scenes include Michael J.Pollard and Doris Day in "Caprice" and I think also Ernie Wise in "The Intelligence Men").


                    • #11
                      I only really saw the problem when I watched "Midnight Cowboy". In that movie, Jon Voight plans to be a "hustler" and is annoyed to discover that his first client is a teenage opportunist who doesn't actually have any money to pay for his groping.Until then, I had never imagined anyone doing anything in a cinema other than actually watching the film.


                      • #12
                        Any of these? All f rom the year 1978



                        • #13
                          All from the year 1978 world wide though...
                          Dawn of the Dead in that list didn't get to the UK until June 1980

                          I'm starting to build lists of these things...I'll add them to the menu bar when ready


                          • #14
                            Aah, now "Dawn of thee Dead" was definitely one I saw in the cinema. Loved that one, when I was 16.


                            • #15
                              m enjoying the trip down memory lane. I don't normally think of 1978 with a heap of nostalgia.. to be honest, I don't think of those films as particularly "old". But it has been fun trying to piece together my old viewing habits and recognise how much they have changed (or not). My thanks to those who have offered me help, it is much appreciated.