I just read today that one of my favorite rides at Disney Hollywood Studios is closing down, a ride that forever changed this movie buff's life, I'm talking about The Great Movie Ride. If you never had the opportunity to experience this ride into cinema history, here's a video that gives you a taste of the magic.
This ride was where I first experienced, at age 9, back when it opened up in 1989, just how amazing movies could be. The outside of the building was made to look like the famous Grauman's Chinese Theater in Hollywood, complete with replica celebrity handprints, from everyone from Bob Hope to Jim Henson.
And then as you went inside, there were famous props from movie history, like Dorothy's ruby slippers from The Wizard of Oz, and the model of the derelict spaceship from Alien , and many more. Some of the movies I was familiar with at the time, others merely made their appearance for the first time in my life, like Alien things that I would get more into as my life progressed. Then there was the trailers for classic movies from The Searchers, to Raiders of the Lost Ark, again broadening my movie horizons even further.
What I remember most about this ride was that it truly brought these movies to life, moments that will always be a part of me, and it helped spark that vision in me that turned me from a kid who liked movies to one that was obsessed with them.
It brought off the screen Gene Kelly's famous Singing in the Rain bit, and put me face to face with the Xenomorph from Alien for the first time, in a bit that alternately scared and fascinated 9 year old me. If you never had the chance to go on the ride, you missed out, but if you did, and you're a movie buff like me, it will always live on in our hearts forever.