Looking to catch an indie flick and have a one-of-a-kind movie-going experience while you’re in Miami? There’s a wide variety of independent and art house cinemas across the city to choose from. Whether it’s a foreign film, documentary, independent flick or a critically acclaimed blockbuster, duck into one of these cool retreats and enjoy the show.
Miami Beach Cinematheque
Miami Beach Cinematheque, home to the Miami Beach Film Society is located in the heart of the Art Deco District at historic Miami Beach City Hall. Showcasing premieres from international film festivals such as Sundance and Cannes, you can also catch smaller local fests hosted here like the Miami Beach International Film Festival. They host an annual Academy Awards watch party in their quirky space and on any given night, you can watch indie and international films while snacking on popcorn, sandwiches and sip Nespresso coffee or wine.
Bill Cosford Cinema
Our love for cinema deepened during college thanks to film courses and movies showing on campus. University of Miami’s 240-seat Bill Cosford Cinema provides the minimum, comfortable seats and a peaceful theater. There are no gourmet wine bars, no curated beer list, no hot meals, not even popcorn. In fact, you should plan to eat before or after. The closest you’re going to come to a concession stand are the nearby vending machines. But the good news is that you’ll be able to watch fantastic, smart films, ballets, operas, and lectures as well as Oscar Nominated Short Films. Cosford also plays home to the Hitchcock Film Festival and the Kenneth Lattman Foundation Lecture Series.
Wynwood’s movie house, O Cinema, brought a much-needed theater to the area. You can watch indie flicks and international films here. Grab a seat or get comfy on the couch in the front. Before the show, stop by their concession stand where you’ll be happy to learn they serve beer and wine to wash down the popcorn and cupcakes.
O Cinema also doubles as an event space hosting Second Saturday Art Walk gallery night festivities and collaborating with several partners from local auteurs (Rakontur and the Borsht Film Festival) to the savvy, hyper-local luxe deal site Gilt City to international culture club The Society Global. They’ve even teamed up with Michael’s Genuine, one of the city’s most well-respected restaurants, to host dinner and a movie nights. Their success in Wynwood led them to open a second location in Miami Shores offering even more
This theater has stood the test of time and gone from one the city’s first silent movie houses to its present day position as a beacon for foreign films. Originally opened in 1926, Tower Theater sits in the center of Little Havana on Calle Ocho. It’s possible to enjoy international cinema on a daily basis here. The historic movie house is now under the guardianship of Miami Dade College and is a large contributor to Little Havana’s flourishing cultural scene. Moviegoers can enjoy dining at one of several nearby restaurants.
Coral Gables Art Cinema
Across from Miami’s signature independent bookstore, Books & Books, the Coral Gables Art Cinema shows a bevy of independent and foreign films. In January 2012, the Coral Gables Art Cinema began a new series of special event broadcasts from the U.K. of performances by the National Theatre of London. You can also catch screenings from the Miami International Film Festival and the Miami Gay & Lesbian Film Festival. Coral Gables Art Cinema is redefining the concession counter with a gourmet café. You can snack on baked goods from local bakery Chocolate Fashion including tarts, cookies, chocolates, hand-made ice cream and mini-quiches, or enjoy a cup of coffee from Lavazza.
Blue Starlite Mini Urban Drive-In
For a taste of nostalgia in the heart of Wynwood, reserve one of 50 spaces at the Blue Startlite Mini Urban Drive-In theater. Operating seasonally, they screen childhood favorites of the Baby Boom and Generation X/Y cohorts, indie films, art house movies and cult classics. They bring the sprawling drive-in theater experience of yesteryear from the outskirts of town to the city’s cosmopolitan center for a hip, one-of-a-kind moviegoing experience.
New World Symphony Soundscape Park
For a completely unique moviegoing experience, bring a picnic and a blanket to Soundscape Park at the New World Symphony where they screen movies on Wednesday nights on their 7,000 square-foot projection wall. The building is designed by world-renowned architect Frank Gehry and provides a cultural hub in the heart of South Beach. Movies range from classics to foreign films to musicals to contemporary blockbusters that are visually captivating at such a large scale. Best of all, the screenings are free. Other evenings of the week, they project “wallcasts” of the symphony’s performances, video art and other cultural presentations.
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