Just asking …

Are you old enough to remember Saturday “movie clubs” at your neighbor film theaters?

Kewalo Theatre

Back in the day Consolidated Theatres had matinee “clubs” – named for the likes of Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Popeye, etc. – where kids signed on and family fare screened for youths.

Palama Theatre
Kaimuki Theatre

Admission was, if you can believe it, 10 cents.

So the Palama Theatre, the Kalihi Theatre, the Liliha Theatre, the Kailua Theatre, the Pawaa Theatre, the Kaimuki Theatre, the Kapahulu, the Kapahulu Theatre  and the Liberty Theatre had a retinue of clubsters showing up for morning movies on Saturdays.

Liliha Theatre

Some sites had pre-screening talent shows with island keiki performing for prizes.

All screenings had cartoon reels and “news” recaps – part of the ritual of movie-going then – along with coming attractions.

These elements ended when the community theaters started shutting down, triggered by the redevelopment of larger halls of viewing, like the Hawaii, the Kuhio, the Waikiki #3, the Waikiki #1 and #2, and the Cinerama. And yeah – those stand-alone screening halls eventually were replaced by regional multi-plexes, the smaller ones now shutdown because of the pandemic.

For memory’s sake, were you a Saturday matinee clubber? Where?  Share…


  1. You city folks sure had it good. We had no electricity in Kapoho so all we saw by generator run films were Roy Rogers, Tom Mix and war news.

  2. OMG, have to remember the ruralites. I remember those Roy Rogers and Hopalong Cassidy films, and saw ’em in a theater, Liliha and Palama. Were your movies shown outdoors, with benches?

  3. In the 40’s I would go to the Pawaa Theater for the movies, but especially the kids show before the film. We had sing-a-longs accompanied by an organ and games and prizes. Then came the cartoons and the serials – to make sure that we came back the following week. Fun memories.

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