These movie theaters all offer something a little different—not the usual action hero films. Offbeat, Indie documentaries and films are a specialty in these theaters.
Here’s a list of our 5 favorite NYC movie theaters nearby.
143 E Houston Street, New York, NY 10002
Sunshine is one of the more modern you’ll find on our list, with digital and 3D technology, stadium-style seating, and gourmet concessions (seriously, we highly suggest go hungry).
Sunshine Cinema is a part of the Landmark Theatres enterprise and offers a wide variety of films—from independent and foreign, to 3D and Hollywood-made.
Fun fact: Landmark Theatres like Sunshine are especially devoted to exhibiting independent films. So, particularly if encouraging the success of indie films is your game, be sure to head down to East Houston and check out Sunshine.
22 E 12th Street, New York, NY 10003
Located just up the way from us at the Washington Square Hotel is Cinema Village, a staple West Village theatre known best for showing foreign, often offbeat films and documentaries.
Beautifully vintage, the theatre was built in 1963 from a turn of the century fire station. As their website boats, it’s “the oldest continuously operated cinema in Greenwich Village, and one of the oldest continuously operated art cinemas in the city.”
The theatre provides its customers with cozy viewing areas and offers films from around the world that you really can’t catch anywhere else in the city. Cinema Village also offers late-night specials ($6 for a screening), for which staff encourages customers to bring their own food and drink!
209 W Houston Street, New York, NY 10014
A downtown movie landmark since 1970, Film Forum has everything you’d want in a theatre. Film Forum, true to its name, shows respect for both the art of filmmaking, as well as the art of film watching. Often, the filmmakers appear here.
It began as an alternative screening space for independent films, with 50 folding chairs, and one projector. Today, Film Forum is still set in that same vintage location, but it has a new-age feel.
The theatre is a nonprofit organization dedicated to showing you films that matter—those that present an audience with diverse social, political, historical, and cultural realities. The theatre screens anything from the classics to documentaries, to independent and international films. If you decide to take a trip to the Film Forum, you’ll be in for a real treat. Visit their website here for current films
333 West 23 Street, New York NY 10011
The SVA Theatre is located in the vibrant neighborhood of Chelsea. While technically a part of the School of Visual Arts, the theatre is open to the public as well as students.
The SVA Theatre acts as a home for anything visual arts related, be it film, media, or even stand up comedy. The theatre initially opened in 1963 as the RKO 23rd Street, and has since screened and hosted thousands of films and artistic events.
A truly world-class facility, the SVA Theatre melds everything this part of Manhattan loves about old film with the modern technology that allows us to enjoy movies to the extent we do today. They screen film of all kinds—(we’re not kidding), anything from Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, to the Bosnian-Herzegovinian Film Festival.
Be sure to check out their website here to see what’s playing. Or, if you’d rather catch a seminar, lecture, or presentation, those will be listed online as well. The SVA Theatre is chock full of options.
Angelika Film Center
18 W Houston Street, New York, NY 10012
If you’re standing at the Washington Square Hotel, just walk diagonally across the park to the South East corner, up West 4th for a few minutes, and down Mercer a few blocks—then, on your left, you’ll see the Angelika.
An NYC student and Greenwich Village local staple, the Angelika Film Center shows new, independent, and foreign films.
This theatre is one of only 6 just like it in the country, offering a curated mix of art house and popular movies for film enthusiasts of all kinds.
The atmosphere, right from the get-go, is something out of, well… a movie. It’s elegant, sophisticated, and decidedly New York—and with a gourmet snack bar to boot!
Though it’s been around since the late 1980s, the Angelika has kept up with the technological innovations of the film world, offering viewers Dolby Digital 3D capabilities, Dolby Surround 5.1, and 4K Digital Projection.
Walking into this SoHo establishment, you might feel like you’ve stepped back in time a few years… but trust us; what the Angelika offers its visitors is everything and more.
So, as we said, we hope you enjoy this list of some of the most unusual film venues our city has to offer. Grab some popcorn and enjoy!