Back in the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s, TORONTO had a few tough little cinemas – mostly scattered along Yonge Street from Gerrard to Queen. Two of them – the Rio and Biltmore – were rather sleazy dens, playing 3 or 4 movies for a pittance. This was TORONTO’s 42nd Street and 8th Avenue all rolled into one or two blocks. In the 70’s, 75 body rub parlours were added, along with strip clubs, drug dealers, and Cinema 2000.
The Metro, an outpost of the Yonge Street strip, recently shut down for good. It was on Bloor Street West at Manning Avenue, in the heart of Koreatown. Life for the Metro began on April 7, 1939, with a double-bill – “Delinquent Parents” and “Looking for Trouble” – and a fire! The opening night fire broke out in a storage room, and caused the evacuation of 700 patrons. No serious damage was caused, and nearly everyone returned to watch the second feature.