**This is a guest post by Joe Bond**
People on trips to New York don’t usually include seeing a film on their list of things to do. But there are few better places to catch a movie than the Big Apple – its iconic, unique style is itself the subject of some of the greatest films of all time. So, next time you’re in town, why not grab a slice of New York pizza and head down to one of the historic theatres, or enjoy a movie outdoors, under the stars? Big-screen devotee Joe Bond takes a look at some of the best spots in the city…
Bryant Park – Perfect for a picnic
Midtown Manhattan plays home to a summer tradition of classic films under stars at the free HBO Summer Film Festival. And it’s nestled in the heart of the city, so there are plenty of places to pick up a slice of pizza beforehand – Little Italy is nearby – or to discuss the movie afterwards over a beer in any number of bars. Last year saw iconic films such as ‘Easy Rider’ and ‘The 39 Steps’ grace the giant silver screen. Their 2012 line-up is still to be confirmed but the festival takes place in June. Arrive early with a picnic blanket – films begin half an hour after sunset.
Bryant Park is between 40th and 42nd Street and Fifth and Sixth Avenues. Nearest Subway: 42nd St/Bryant Park or 5 Av.
Clearview Ziegfeld – Perfect for summer blockbusters
No film lover can ignore the summer blockbuster season, particularly with promising features such ‘The Dictator’, ‘Prometheus’, more Batman, more Bourne, and even a remake of Total Recall on the cards this year. And for big film action, it makes sense to head to a 52-foot screen with state-of-the-art sound and digital projection. Historic single-screen cinema Clearview Ziegfeld, is NY’s only remaining ‘picture palace’ (ie it has over 1,000 seats). Glamorous red carpets and ceiling arches, gold trim and a raised balcony section make for rapturous audiences and atmospheric movie experiences. It’s also a great spot for high-brow films and live screenings of the Metropolitan Opera, too.
Ziegfeld is at 141 W 54th St between Sixth and Seventh Avenues, Midtown West. Nearest Subway Seventh Av. Tickets $12.75, seniors and children $9.
Sunshine Cinema – Best for film lovers
If the name isn’t enticing enough, then over ten popcorn flavours, comfy seats, friendly staff and even a Japanese rock garden should have you vying to go Sunshine Cinema – not to mention its great choice of independent and foreign films. There’s plenty of affection amongst local movie lovers for this charming venue, which also boasts an espresso bar and vegan cookies for sale. The building was formerly a vaudeville house and along with the indie flicks, they also show crowd-pleasers at midnight, whether it’s ‘Some Like it Hot,’ ‘The Evil Dead,’ ‘Super Mario Bros.’ or ‘Robocop’!
The Landmark Sunshine is at 143 East Houston St between First and Second Avenues. Nearest Subway 2nd Av. Tickets $13, seniors and children $9.
Huckleberry Bar – Best for young lovers
If screen-size matters less than sipping drinks and holding hands, you might want to try this neat little venue in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. You’ll find a young crowd enjoying 2-for-1 cocktails and free popcorn on Monday nights at 9pm, as part of a free Movie Membership deal. With a great selection of craft beers, sprits and classic cocktails, as well as sandwiches and snacks available until late, Huckleberry’s is a hangout for locals and the Manhattan crowd alike. Expect retro and cult classic films; previous screenings from their projector have included Dog Day Afternoon, Dazed and Confused, Taxi and American Psycho.
Huckleberry is at 588 Grand St (at Lorimer St.), Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Nearest Subway Lorimer St.