big screen shenanigans

There are holes in Landmark Theatres' script. The cinema chain has pledged to dribble $150,000 into their sticky, dilapidated buildings.

There are holes in Landmark Theatres’ script.

The cinema chain has pledged to dribble $150,000 into their sticky, dilapidated buildings.

It comes after public scrutiny of the poor state of the operations sparked angry phone calls and the formation of a Facebook group, “Cinemas in Whitehorse SUCK! Shame on you Landmark” which quickly grew to 149 members.

Windows were broken and not fixed, water from bathrooms ran down the Yukon Theatre’s walls and there were repeated sound and film problems.

Last winter the heat didn’t work, recently the box office cash registers couldn’t provide change, the seats weren’t properly bolted to the floor … the problems went on and on.

After that, Nathan Cooney, the company’s director of operations, came North to inspect things, pronounced them bad and announced it will spruce things up a bit.

For people who like to see movies on a big screen, this is welcome news.

But there were disturbing messages sprinkled amongst Cooney’s remarks.

Hiring Whitehorse residents with no movie experience was a mistake, he said.

The company has burned through three managers in three years, and many problems could have been resolved with proper staff training.

It was almost as if Cooney was suggesting problems lay with the local residents’ ineptitude, not with the company’s perfunctory approach to its Whitehorse operations.

Apparently, Landmark needs to be reminded that responsibility for the hiring of staff, their training and their inability to pry loose some money to fix windows, doors, cash registers, seats, carpets, and heating systems, among other things, all stretches back to head office in Calgary. In short, you get what you pay for—and Landmark was running things on the cheap.

After years of neglect, the town shamed the company into action.

However, it is still not proceeding with construction of a new, long-promised cinema complex, which is really what the town needs.

Instead, it is slapping a little paint on the walls, cleaning the carpets and floors and tightening some bolts. A manager is spending some time in town training staff.

The cash infusion is sorely needed and long overdue. It represents the least Landmark could do.

“We didn’t want to go halfway with it,” said Cooney. “We want to regain customers’ trust.”

Well, in fact, they are just going halfway with it.

Whether it’s enough to regain customer trust remains to be seen. (Richard Mostyn)

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Fines for contravening the fire ban start at $1,150 and could go as high as $100,000. File photo
Yukon campgrounds will open on May 1 this year. (Black Press file)
Yukon campgrounds to open early

Yukon campgrounds will open on May 1 this year. The early opening… Continue reading

Yukonomist Keith Halliday
Yukonomist: The aesthetics and economics of highway strips

One of the many cultural experiences you enjoy while driving from Whitehorse… Continue reading

Artwork by Grade 2 student Faith showing her thanks for everyone.
Artwork by Grade 2 student Faith showing her thanks for everyone. (Submitted)
Yukon kids express gratitude for nature, pets and friends in art campaign

More than 50 children submitted artwork featuring things they are grateful for

Team Yukon skip Laura Eby, left, directs her team as Team Northern Ontario skip Krysta Burns looks on at the Scotties Tournament of Hearts in Calgary on Feb. 22. (Jeff McIntosh/CP)
Team Yukon reports positive experience at Scotties

Team Yukon played their final game at the national championship in Calgary on Thursday afternoon

A sign indicating a drop-off area behind Selkirk Elementary school in Whitehorse on Feb. 25. (Haley Ritchie/Yukon News)
Parking lot proposal for Selkirk Elementary criticized

Parents and school council are raising concerns about green space and traffic woes

Tom Ullyett, pictured, is the first Yukoner to receive the Louis St-Laurent Award of Excellence from the Canadian Bar Association for his work as a community builder and mentor in the territory. (Gabrielle Plonka/Yukon News)
Tom Ullyett wins lifetime achievement award from the Canadian Bar Association

Ullyett has worked in the Yukon’s justice ecosystem for 36 years as a public sector lawyer and mentor

The Blood Ties outreach van will now run seven nights a week, thanks to a boost in government funding. Logan Godin, coordinator, and Jesse Whelen, harm reduction counsellor, are seen here on May 12, 2020. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Blood Ties outreach van running seven nights a week with funding boost

The Yukon government is ramping up overdose response, considering safe supply plan

Ranj Pillai speaks to media about business relief programs in Whitehorse on April 1, 2020. The Yukon government announced Feb.25 that it will extend business support programs until September. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
Government extends business relief programs to September, launches new loan

“It really gives folks some help with supporting their business with cash flow.”

Whitehorse City Hall. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
A look at decisions made by Whitehorse City Council this week

Bylaw amendment Whitehorse city council is moving closer with changes to a… Continue reading

Susie Rogan is a veteran musher with 14 years of racing experience and Yukon Journey organizer. (Yukon Journey Facebook)
Yukon Journey mushers begin 255-mile race

Eleven mushers are participating in the race from Pelly Crossing to Whitehorse

Legislative assembly on the last day of the fall sitting in Whitehorse on Nov. 22, 2018. As the legislature prepares to return on March 4, the three parties are continuing to finalize candidates in the territory’s 19 ridings. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Nine new candidates confirmed in Yukon ridings

It has been a busy two weeks as the parties try to firm up candidates

David Malcolm, 40, has been charged with assaulting and attempting to disarm a police officer after an incident in Whitehorse on Feb. 18. (Phil McLachlan/Capital News)
Man resists arrest, assaults officer

A Whitehorse man has been charged with assaulting and attempting to disarm… Continue reading

Yukon Energy in Whitehorse on Aug. 4, 2020. A site on Robert Service Way near the Alaska Highway has been selected as the future home of Yukon Energy’s energy storage project. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Site selected for Yukon Energy battery project

Planned to be in service by the end of 2022

Most Read