Now that the weather is finally warming up it’s the perfect time to watch a movie outside. Here are some of the best outdoor summer movie festivals happening in NYC. By Carly Petrone.
Intrepid Museum’s Summer Movie Series
W. 46th and 12th Ave.
New York, NY 10036
Fasten your seat belts because Intrepid Museum’s Annual Summer Movie Series kicks off with a screening of Top Gun on Friday, May 26th. Sit back on the flight deck and watch this Tom Cruise classic – just make sure to get there plenty early as it’s first come, first served. Feel free to bring lawn chairs, blankets, food, and non-alcoholic beverages. This year’s line up includes Good Morning, Vietnam (7/11), Anchorman (7/18), Cocktail (7/25), The Martian (8/1), and Back to the Future (8/8). Admission is free and deck opens at 7 p.m. Movies begin at sunset, weather permitting.
HBO Bryant Park Movie Film Festival
42nd St. and Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY
This year’s HBO Bryant Park Summer Film Festival is back starting June 19th! Not only can you enjoy classic films up on the big screen, but you can also enjoy bites curated by the folks from Hester Street Fair. Bring a blanket, some good friends, and settle in for a night of fun – did we mention that there will be classic Warner Brothers cartoons shown before the start of each film? You may find yourself taking part in the Bryant Park Boogie, the Film Fest’s own special dance that takes place during the screenings. Make sure to check their website to find out more about this year’s lineup. Lawn opens at 5 p.m. and films begin at sunset.
Movies with a View
334 Furman St.
Brooklyn, NY 11201
Head down to Brooklyn Bridge Park every Thursday evening in July and August for their popular Movies with a View series. More than 340,000 moviegoers have watched some of their favorite films since its inception back in 2000. Sit back at Harbor View Lawn and take in the views the Manhattan Skyline as the sun sets along the East River. The festival begins with a screening of Office Space on July 6th and ends with the audience’s favorite pick of the summer on August 24th. DJ Hahn Solo will be there and the beer garden will be open starting at 6 p.m. so come ready to party. Want to bring the whole family? Make sure to mark your calendar for July 27th when The Lego Movie takes the screen. See website for more movie listings.
2017 Rooftop Films Summer Series
Various rooftops across Brooklyn
One of the best things about living in NYC is the access to so many cool rooftops. Now you can take advantage of them during the 21st Annual Rooftop Films Summer Series, which takes place atop buildings all across the city. Whether you’re in the mood to watch a short film series, a dark cartoon, or a feature film, there’s plenty of independent work to enjoy. Dance the night away with live music and stick around for the epic after parties. Since Rooftop Films is a non-profit arts organization, they heavily rely on volunteers to make sure everything runs smoothly. Sign up here and catch as many free films as you can. Opening night kicks off at The Old American Can Factory in Gowanus with a special screening of This Is What We Mean By Short Films, a collection of work that celebrates stories from the moral grey zone. Learn more here.
Movies Under The Stars
Various parks across NYC
New York City Parks are offering film buffs a variety of ways to enjoy movies this summer. Whether you’re in the mood to watch a classic from your car or your favorite spot on the lawn, the Movies Under Stars series has it all. Catch John Travolta and Oliva Newton John in Grease in Queens, sing along to Aladdin in Manhattan, or keep up with all the Transformers action from Staten Island. Some of the city’s busiest basketball courts and playgrounds also become makeshift outdoor movie theaters during this annual summer event so make sure to check the NYC Parks website for more information. Admission is free and most films begin at 8 p.m. Series begins on May 19th (Grease) and runs through September 20th (Malcolm X).
Hudson Riverflicks: Family Fridays
New York, NY
Bring the whole family over to Pier 46 every Friday from July 7th – August 18th because Hudson Riverflicks is showing PG-rated films starting at 8:30 p.m. There will be free popcorn as well as snacks and beverages for sale. The fun begins with The Secret Life of Pets on July 7th, followed by screenings of Trolls, Willy Wonka and The Chocolate Factory, Kubo and the Two Strings, Sing, Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them, and The Karate Kid. If you’re looking for something with a bit more action, make sure to stop by on Wednesday evenings for Hudson Riverflicks Big Hit Wednesdays starting on July 8th. All movies are open-captioned and bathrooms can be found at Pier 45 Comfort Station.
Socrates Sculpture Park Outdoor Cinema
32-01 Vernon Blvd.
Long Island City, NY 11106
For those looking for a diverse list of international films, make sure to find a spot on the lawn during Socrates Sculpture Park’s Outdoor Cinema series. From July 5th through August 23rd, viewers can watch movies that celebrate a different country and culture. Plus, moviegoers can nosh on regional cuisine from neighboring Queens restaurants and enjoy performances by local musicians and dancers that celebrate the culture of the film’s country of origin. Just a few films in this summer’s lineup include Easy Money (Sweden), Romance & Cigarettes (USA), Bad Hair (Venezuela), and Timbuktu (Mauritania/France). Admission is free and all films are intended for an adult audience. Learn more here.