Save The Castro Theatre in San Francisco!

castro_resizeDear Cerrito Theater Patron:

Our friend Ky Boyd, who owns and operates Rialto Cinemas Cerrito, is asking for support to save the Castro Theater. We are forwarding his letter, here:

As the operator of two classic movie theatres in the East Bay, Rialto Cinemas understands the importance of preserving and maintaining classic movie theatres as viable venues for moviegoing. We are greatly concerned by the plans of Another Planet Entertainment to remove the seats from the Castro Theatre in San Francisco and destroy the seating rake in order to create flat floored tiers for dancing and standing. APE claims that the changes are necessary for them to profitably operate the venue for concerts and live music similar to their Fox Theatre venue in Oakland. But there are many venues around the country that present concerts and show films that have traditional sloped rakes and installed seating. Just look to the Paramount Theatre in Oakland, the Flynn in Burlington Vermont, the Chicago Theatre on State Street in Chicago, the Fabulous Fox in St. Louis, the Tennessee Theatre in Knoxville, the Majestic in San Antonio, the Orpheum in Los Angeles, and the Beacon in New York City. All these theatres have installed seating and successfully present first class music entertainment. Don’t let APE destroy the Castro’s ability to continue to be a film venue in addition to a concert venue.

The Castro Theatre is a national treasure, the pride of San Francisco, and a monument for the LBGTQ+ community.

Many festivals, film and others, use the Castro Theatre throughout the year. These celebrations bring thousands of people to the neighborhood where they patronize locally owned restaurants and retail shops between films throughout the day.

The Castro is the only large theater (1407 seats) left in San Francisco capable of projecting movies but there are many concert venues with flat floors (The Independent, Bill Graham Civic Auditorium, The Warfield, Fillmore, Regency, etc).

I urge you to take action to let it be known how important it is to save the seats at the Castro.

Please go to Save The Castro Theatre where you can take action. There you will find a template letter (though personalizing it is better) and people you can write to. You do not have to live in San Francisco to help.

“On October 5, the Historic Preservation Commission will consider updating the Castro Theatre’s Landmark Designation and will decide whether APE’s plans for the theatre adversely impact its historic significance, in view of that updated Landmarking. On October 6, the San Francisco Planning Commission will consider amending the Planning Code to permit the sale of alcohol throughout the theatre and a “change of use” of the building from a movie theatre to a nighttime entertainment venue.”

Write now to make an impact. These meetings are only a few weeks away.

Thank you for your support!

See you at the movies!

Best regards,


A Whole Week of Classic Movies!

See six classic movies at Rialto Cinemas Cerrito

The Friends of the Cerrito Theater are sponsoring a week of classic films at Rialto Cinemas Cerrito. From September 9th through 15th, the theater will show six different movies, each one two or three times. They are:

Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948)

Directed by John Huston

Down-and-outs Humphrey Bogart, Walter Huston, and Tim Holt try to make their fortunes by digging for gold in the Sierra Madre mountains in Mexico, only to be outdone by their failings. Walter Huston won an Oscar for best supporting actor, and his son John won an Oscar for best direction and another for best screenplay.

Treasure of the Sierra Madre features one of the all-time classic movie quotes (if you don’t know it, you’ll have to watch to find out what it is).

Show times: Sept. 9 4:00, Sept. 11 1:00, Sept 15 7:00

Bullitt (1968)

Directed by Peter Yates

Steve McQueen plays Police Lieutenant Bullitt, who investigates the murder of a witness who was in his protection. This movie has one of the all-time great chase scenes, in which McQueen himself (a world-class race car driver) did some of the stunt driving. Bullitt also features Jacqueline Bissett, Robert Vaughn, and Robert Duvall.

Show times: Sept. 9 7:00, Sept 13 4:00

Sullivan’s Travels (1941)

Directed by Preston Sturges

Joel McCrea plays John L. Sullivan, a high-minded Hollywood director who sets out to live as a tramp to gain experience for the movie he wants to make. On the way, he meets an aspiring actress played by Veronica Lake, and he learns what people really want to see on the big screen.

Show times: Sept. 10 1:30, Sept 14 7:00

The Mummy (1932)

Directed by Kael Freund

Boris Karloff plays Imhotep, a long-dead Egyptian high priest inadvertently brought back to life by a team of archaeologists. He meets a woman whom he believes to be the reincarnation of an ancient princess, and tries to make her his immortal bride.

Show times: Sept 10 4:00, Sept 13 7:00

The Birds (1963)

Directed by Alfred Hitchcock

Melanie Daniels (Tippi Hedren) travels to the small town of Bodega Bay to see Mitch Brenner (Rod Taylor), whom she’s interested in, but when she arrives the birds there begin to act strangely, attacking people with seemingly no motivation. Why is this happening? Is it somehow caused by Melanie’s presence?

Show times: Sept 10 7:00, Sept 11 4:00, Sept 15 4:00

Touch of Evil (1958)

Directed by Orson Welles

In this film noir set in a Mexican border town, prosecutor Miguel Vargas (Charton Heston) investigates a murder and finds evidence that implicates corrupt Police Captain Hank Quinlan (Orson Welles). Janet Leigh, Dennis Weaver, Marlene Dietrich, Zsa Zsa Gabor, and Joseph Cotten also have roles in this thriller.

Show times: Sept 11 7:00, Sept 14 4:00

How to Buy Tickets

Moviegoers are strongly advised to buy advance tickets at the box office or online, as the movie may sell out. To buy online, click on the desired show time above. All seats are $10.00. Arriving early is a good idea, in order to choose your seat and also order delicious food and wine or beer.


Rialto Cinemas Cerrito requires proof of vaccination for all attendees age 12 and up. Please read the details of the policy here, on the Rialto web site.

Celebrate Olivia Newton-John with a Double Feature!

One week only! September 2-8

To honor Olivia Newton-John, Rialto Cinemas Cerrito is presenting a double feature of Grease and Xanadu.

Grease, the top-grossing musical of all time, follows good girl Sandy (Olivia Newton-John) and bad boy Danny (John Travolta) through a year-long high-school romance, along with their friends the Pink Ladies and the T-Birds. The movie features many memorable songs, including “Summer Nights,” “Hopelessly Devoted to You,” and “You’re the One That I Want.”

In Xanadu, roller disco meets 1940s swing in this kitsch-classic of 1980s Hollywood, featuring Gene Kelly (in his final feature film appearance) as a former big-band sideman who teams up with a down-on-his-luck young artist (Michael Beck) and a beguilingly beautiful Olympian muse (Olivia Newton-John) to turn a decaying theater into a vibrant nightclub. The movie’s song-and-dance numbers include pastiche throwbacks to Kelly’s postwar heyday and glitzy disco-on-wheels set pieces, in which the dizzying mobility of the cinematography becomes integral to the choreography. Said to have inspired the creation of the Golden Raspberry Awards, which celebrate the year’s worst movies, Xanadu has gone down in Hollywood history as a memorably over-the-top genre hybrid, a fantasy-romance-musical with a wildly popular soundtrack performed by Newton-John and Electric Light Orchestra.

Tickets for this double feature will go on sale August 28. You will be able to buy them on line or at the box office. Normal prices will apply.


Rialto Cinemas Cerrito requires proof of vaccination for all attendees age 12 and up. Please read the details of the policy here, on the Rialto web site.