Cinema is on the brink of extinction. With the Cineworld empire having now re-shut its doors for the foreseeable and all of the major blockbusters postponed indefinitely, it’s looking pretty bleak out there.
If you’re itching to get your cinema fix, we’ve rounded up eight of London’s independent cinemas to go out and support during this challenging time.
Known best for their epilogical overnight series screenings and Disney pyjama parties, The Prince Charles Cinema celebrates the best of cult cinema.
Located in the beating heart of the West End, the cinema boasts two screens and showcases films on a variety of formats, including 35mm, 70mm and Digital. I managed to catch Alfonso Cuarón’s Roma on 70mm and it totally changed the game, bringing to life minute details you wouldn’t know existed if you’d viewed via your mini laptop screen.
The Prince Charles Cinema has just reopened and is running at a reduced capacity to allow for social distancing and safety, and is showing some great cult classics and independent newbies right now, from The Thing to Miranda July’s Kajillionaire.
7 Leicester Place, West End WC2H 7BY
What launched as a passion project in someone’s backyard, has since transformed into one of London’s most loved pop-up cinematic experiences. Now, the aptly named, Backyard Cinema boasts a permanent in Wandsworth and a pop-up venue in the Union Chapel, Islington, and continues to impress film fanatics with its interactive nature.
The Snow Kingdom has just relaunched, bringing with it a magical portal, complete with an indoor waterfall and Backyard Cinema’s signature giant bean bags. Book in for a truly wonderful experience and catch Christmas classics in the run up to the big day, including Elf, Home alone and Love Actually.
RAM QUARTER, 13 WANDSWORTH PLAIN, Wandsworth SW18 1ET
Tick off date night the right way with a trip to Olympic Studios. Book in for their infamous ‘love seats’ and cosy up with popcorn, fizzy pop or a bottle of wine in tow, and catch some of the best films currently out in cinemas right now.
It’s been a cinema since 1906 and has seen the likes of The Who, The Rolling Stones and David Bowie grace the floors. They’ve also got two sister sites Archlight Cinema in Battersea (more on this later) and last year launched The Cinema at Selfridges.
CHURCH ROAD, BARNES SW13 9HL
Both their Portobello and White City location offer so much more than your typical stale popcorn and flat fizzy pop experience; it’s here you’ll be able to enjoy the cinematic experience in style from plush velvet seating to dining at one of their on-site restaurants.
We love their Portobello branch thanks to the Electric Diner, serving up all of your favourite American diner-style classics and more.
The cinema offers so much more than your typical stale popcorn and flat fizzy pop experience.
Portobello / White City
Rediscover the lost art of the cinema experience when you book in for a film at Archlight Cinema. Located in Battersea Power Station, the cinema beholds cosy, reclining seats accompanied by your own individual tables, perfect for enjoying a tipple or two while you watch the film.
Plus there’s also two hours free parking when you visit the cinema, bonus for any city drivers out there.
Battersea Power Station, 22 Arches Lane, Nine Elms SW11 8AB
Bethnal Green staple, Genesis cinema has become part of the community since 1912 and before as an entertainment space since 1848. Nowadays the space boasts five screens and shows some of the best blockbuster and independent films on offer.
Venture down and catch the likes of I Am Greta, plus an exclusive recorded Q&A, On The Rocks and the new children’s animation Over The Moon.
93-95 Mile End Road, Bethnal Green E1 4UJ
Being part of the Institut Français, Cine Lumiere plays host to French cinema here in London, and showcases some of the best French films in the business. Plus, expect film festival exclusives occasionally showing too.
Acting as an all round cultural arts venue, The Arthouse in Crouch End boasts everything from theatre and dance to comedy and cinema. Inside the cinema, expect independent gems and all time classics to be showcased, including the debut film from writer-director Rose Glass, Saint Maud.
159A Tottenham Lane, Crouch End N8 9BT