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Jun 25

Now playing at the Elmo

SLO Telegram ads for Elmo Theater silent movie "Going Up" Jan.4, 1925.

“If flying interferes with your love-making, swear off flying.”
Theater goers with 15 cents in their pocket could head to the Elmo Theater. The advertisement in the Daily Telegram on January 4, 1924 featured veteran silent movie actor Douglas MacLean in the movie, “Going Up”.
The ad touts the movie as “Eclipsing the record breaking musical comedy success of New York and London.” It features an embarrassed pilot raising his hand in a solemn vow as his flapper sweetie looks at him with dagger eyes, crashed plane in background.
“A whizzing whopper of a screen comedy sky rocketing roars of fun!”
Uh, call me crazy but is it really a good idea to adopt a musical comedy to the silent screen?
Perhaps this will be the last bad decision Hollywood makes.
Charles Douglas MacLean (1890-1967) was ten years into a silent movie career¬† that included 28 credits. According to the Golden Silents website, MacLean specialized in light romantic roles and was nicknamed “The man with the million dollar smile.”
After making one talkie, he left the screen acting business to become a producer and writer.
Coming next week, Colleen Moore in “Flaming Youth”. The teaser reads:” The sensational, daring novel to which the Author dared not sign his real name.”
Later in the week the Kolb & Dill Orchestra offer a “Cleverly concocted crooked comedy”. Vaudeville was still alive and well on Thursday night though tickets ranged much higher ($.75-2.00) than the movie prices (15-25 cents).
Elmo was an abbreviation of the original name El Montery, according to to the Cinima Treasures website but in these ads they appear to be separate locations. I seem to recall being told the Elmo was located at the corner of Marsh and Morro Streets where Union Bank is today. Help clear this up if you know.

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