Parkland Plaza is on Knox Abbot Drive just across the bridge from USC (and now, though not then, The State Museum). It's an interesting retail venue, neither thriving, nor totally down on its luck. Over the years lots of businesses have come and gone. Probably the most significant of these was Parkland Pharmacy, which was an old-fashioned rural style drug/general/we-do-everything store which also housed a contract post-office with a wall full of PO Boxes. It eventually sold out and a CVS now occupies the spot.
The other significant business, or significant to me at any rate, was the Gamecock Theater. The Gamecock was on the East side of the plaza and was always a rather small operation rather than anything with pretensions to being a "Movie House". At some point, even the rather limited original space was partitioned, and the place became a duplex with the name becoming, if I recall correctly, The Gamecock Twin Cinemas or something to that effect.
Since The Gamecock was on the other side of town from where I grew up, we only saw a couple of movies there when I was a kid, and I can't recall now what they were. However, when I was in college, it was fairly accessible from The Towers, where I was living. Of course, the Russell House was even closer, and while the theater there was in its glory days, I sometimes saw 4 movies a week there, but those were all classics and The Gamecock was first-run. At various times, a group of us would find a car and go over, but I can clearly recall only two movies that I saw there during college.
The first was The Seduction, a 1982 flick starring Morgan Fairchild. At the time, Morgain Fairchild was in a very popular TV series, which I never saw, and the name of which I forget. I was aware that she was the show's sex symbol and when my roomate and I saw that she had her first big screen outing and that it was rated 'R', we figured (especially given the title!) that there was a good chance that she would not be over-burdened with clothes, and that seemed like a sufficient reason to scrape up the bucks and transportation.
Well, that was true -- in fact several times she was not-overburdened to the point of not being burdened at all, but while that was nice (very nice actually) we gradually became aware, as we looked at each other with incredulity from time to time, that this was an awful movie. Not, "well, it really wasn't that good" awful, but "did they really shoot that whole scene with the boom mike clearly in view?" awful. It was something of a trifecta in fact: Bad writing, bad acting and bad production values. I still don't understand how Fairchild couldn't leverage her small-screen popularity into a decent vehicle. I mean, it's not like she couldn't take her clothes off in a movie with a competent crew and a script that at least made sense!
The final movie I saw at The Gamecock was Yellow Hair and the Fortress of Gold. This was in 1984, and if I recall the timing correctly, I had just finished final exams and was exhausted and wanting a fun popcorn flick. The whole ad campaign for Yellow Hair, inasmuch as it had one, was to position it as a low budget "Indiana Jones" type movie, which was fine by me. As it turned out, the campaign had little to nothing to do with the movie, which was really (as comments on IMDB suggest) a late Spaghetti Western. The titular character "Yellow Hair" was a blond Indian "half-breed" and the rickety plot reached its climax with her finding out that her parents had loved one another (rather than her being a child of rape as she had been led to believe). Along the way, she had some Zorro-ish adventures (Disney Zorro-ish), but really not the non-stop cheesy action the posters implied. I was let down, but this movie was a first for me in a way -- it was the first time I was the only person in a theater! That's happened several times since and sometimes for good movies, but I distinctly remember thinking "Not a good sign!"
With graduation, I took a job out of town and kind of lost track of the Gamecock for a while. The next time I became aware of it, I found that it had closed, had been sold, and was operating as an "Antique Mall". That's the ReSale ReVue you can see in the pictures. As such things go, it was OK (I think I bought an old phone there), but with several very large Antique Malls in the Vista, and one just down the street, I suppose they really couldn't make a go of it. Now the space is empty, and I can't think of any theaters at all in West Columbia or Cayce.
UPDATE 12 September 2009: Added an ad for The Gamecock Theater from the 15 April 1973 State newspaper.