Two Cents: The Logan Art Cinema

westatesHere in Cache Valley (IE- Logan), there was only one place to go for screenings of indie films like The Hurt Locker, No Country For Old Men and There Will Be Blood: The Logan Art Cinema. As of today, the only place to go might be Hastings, Hollywood Video and your living room. Thanks to a virtually hidden location and meager attendance, Westates Theaters (Cache Valley’s favorite local monopoly), has decided it high time to give Logan Art Cinema its final push into oblivion.

On an optimistic note, according to the Logan Herald Journal, Westates is promising to screen limited release indie films at its Providence 8, Movies 5 and Stadium 6 locations. We’re a little cautious about the promise, but here’s the part where we weigh in anyway:

Andy: I have a hard time swallowing anything T.J. Rudman (Weststates Theaters V.P.) says in relation to the management of their theater chain in Logan, especially the Art Cinema. Frankly, I don’t see why there has to be an “art cinema” anyhow. Most of the films they label as “artsy” are getting more attention from other theater chains. The Logan Art Cinema didn’t fail because of low demand, it failed because of poor management.

Dan: I’m not the biggest fan of Westates, but I don’t know that it was poor management. I’ll blame to the absolutely terrible location virtually hidden behind trees on an nondescript stretch of “Main” and I’d couple it with the fact the films shown there aren’t films that are marketed or have much awareness for anyone beyond cinephile circles. I’m still amazed at how many people haven’t heard of The Hurt Locker. I will agree with you 100% on the fact that we don’t need an special theater for indie movies (it’s special because it has “art” and “cinema” in its title?). When Joe/Sally Popcorn goes to the movies, they go to the movie theater, not the art house. Adding indies to frequented theaters where they’ll share marquees with big, fat blockbusters will do more for people seeing these films than any unknown art theater would. This closure, if Westates keeps its promise, is a good thing.

Andy: But see, that’s my point – albeit somewhat broad – is there never should have been an art cinema to begin with. That theater should be a dollar theater at best. But the Westates are running The Proposal at the Logan Movies 5 and that comes out on DVD in two weeks. Give me a break. You can’t swap out the 10 people seeing that for the 10 people who saw Paper Heart last weekend? Unbelievable. I also just hate the way he couches the art cinema as a “community service.” Mr. Rudman, if you want to invest $5,000 wisely, fix up the dilapidated bathrooms at Movies 5 and hire someone to make the parking lot and exterior look presentable. That structure is an eyesore. And, surprise, surprise, you can see the same thing happening at their other theaters. Couple that with child labor and equipment that poops out and I’ll call it like I see it – mismanagement.  And yes, I’m feeling fiery.

Dan: So it’s not so much that the “Art Cinema” was mismanaged- more that it never should have been there in the first place, with a big “for shame” directed at Westates for the wannabee guilt trip laid at the feet of the community. Here’s to that $5,000 loss going toward getting that cheap, hanging counter fixed in the dude’s restroom at their newest, Stadium 6 and here’s to Westates making due on its promise to broaden the horizons for more indie movies in theaters people will actually watch them in. In the mean time, I’m sure we’re not holding our collective breath.

8 comments On Two Cents: The Logan Art Cinema

  • I want to be fair with Westates, because at least they are in the ballgame in Logan and Stadium 6 is a decent theater (for now anyway).

    But if we’re going to call a spade a spade, we have to acknowledge the well established pattern of this organization opening a new theater and letting its old properties run down rapidly. Providence Stadium 8, just three years ago the best option for movies in town, seems dirty and run down now and unless it’s the only place showing a movie that I really want to see, I go to University 6.

    I won’t even get started on Movies 5, which also was “the best” back in the late 1990s, and now I haven’t been to in years, but I’m told its heinous garbage. And does anyone remember Cinema 3 that just closed down a few years ago? Blech.

    I’ve attended fewer movies recently up here in Logan, and I think on the year, I’ve seen more in Ogden at Larry H.’s place than I have up here. The reason: Down there it’s truly a great cinematic experience.

  • You couldn’t be more correct, Sir! We all want to be fair to Westates as well, but let’s face it. Stadium 6 is starting to see some serious ware after only its first year. Larry Miller’s properties see more traffic and always seem to remain tidy and maintained (and working).

    I understand we’re a small market, but there should also be some pride in ownership– that or better on-location management (which, to their credit, I’ve seen some evidence of lately). My cinematic experience here in Logan is always hit and miss, with more misses than hits.

    Amen to you, sir. Amen to you.

  • Agreed and that’s why Rudman’s constant drum banging of “we cut costs to make it affordable for you” is a load of crap. Last I looked there is a 50 cent difference between the Westates and Larry H. Miller. Concessions prices seem to be roughly the same, as well. I can tell you right now, with the exception of an out-of-order toilet, I have never encountered the haphazard conditions at a Megaplex theater that I have endured at the Westates. I mean, seriously – have you been in the bathrooms at University 6? Do the hand soap dispensers not work? What’s with the lineup of store-bought, half-empty pump soap? Do people actually work at the Westates? I usually see three or four people standing around, perhaps someone should learn janitorial maintenance and get busy.

    So, here’s the plan, let’s get some investors lined up and open up an Alamo Drafthouse theater. They are franchising.

  • Cool. I’ll spot $650,000. You spot the other and we’ll meet back together after we’ve looted the destruction left over from 2012. We’ll have the first post-apocalyptic movie house and EVERYONE will want to get in because EVERYONE loves escapism during hard times.

  • The extra 50 cents at Larry H’s cinema house is worth it to be able to use the Dyson hand drier after using the pisser.

  • I love that thing. The Dyson Air Blade!

  • Westates is 100% turd. Old Man Miller, for all his douchebaggery, had me at Reserved Seating. A drive to the city for a decent place to eat and saved seats is well worth it. Waiting in line” (more like a massive clump of humanity) at Westates for an hour-plus for a blockbuster in a crappy theater is overrated.

    In a semi-related note, I emailed the Westates dude a few years ago after I took my handicapped Pops to see a movie with me. Not surprisingly, there was a big line, as it was a summer blockbuster. There was absolutely no seating in the waiting area so he had to sit inside the Star Trek sit-down video game. I emailed Mr. Westates my disgust and was told there would be a bench placed in the lobby. Years later, still no bench. Shameful.

  • “So, here’s the plan, let’s get some investors lined up and open up an Alamo Drafthouse theater. They are franchising.”

    LOL, I would LOVE to open an Alamo in Logan(or anywhere else in UT for that matter).. obviosuly chances of that happening are zilch. So Logan/CV is stuck, and what seems like will be forever, with Westates theaters as the only movie-going option. Tyler brings up an excellent point about the pattern of recently opened theater complexes aging rapidly(not just in Logan, mind you… even the Westates theaters I’ve been to in St. George- their “Stadium 8”, which opened around the same time as the Logan Stadium 8, suffers from the same neglect).

    You also need to take into effect how poorly these complexes or properties are conceived to begin with. From parking to concessions and the lobbies to the theater houses themselves.. poor planning coupled with shoddy workmanship which makes for a not-so pleasant movie going expereince. I’ve only gone once to Stadium 6 and that was back in ’07 to see “Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Imporium” with my family. How the theater is set up(entrance and concessions) ridiculous. But the worst part of Stadium 6, imo, is the interior of the theater itself. Can’t remember how many times, and for how long, we couldn’t even hear our movie but the movie in the next screen which was “Enchanted”. Seemed like every time Amy Adams broke into a tune, which was often, it would completely drown out the sound of the film in front of us!!! And I’m not talking about the bass, either. I sat there and could almost make out the dialogue of the songs, in that movie, over then one I was watching in front of my eyes.

    Needless to say, I haven’t gone back there since and while I was still living in Logan, my wife and I whenever we decided to go to a film– 95% of the time we would leave Logan and make our way down to Ogden to Cienemark 14 @ Newgate and/or Megaplex 13 at the District or SLC to see films the way they should be, and deserve to be seen.

Comments are closed.

Site Footer

Sliding Sidebar