In the current situation, outdoor and drive-in cinemas around the globe are providing the only theatrical fix for those missing the unique experience of the big screen. With that being the case, our writers have been reminiscing about some of the best outdoor cinema trips they have had – read on to see our picks…
Mamma Mia 2 (2018) in Kamari, Greece
Kamari, a quiet, unassuming Greek village on the road between Fira and Santorini, hides a big secret. Down a winding dirt path in the heart of the village is a haven for film lovers, a beautiful outdoor cinema. It was here that I was lucky enough to watch Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again, screened in English with Greek subtitles. As the actors sang and danced across the beautiful rural Greek hills, I could look around and soak in the authentic Greek atmosphere under the leafy foliage of the trees. I promise that there is no greater experience than lying back on a deckchair under the stars, sipping a cocktail, while Lily James softly sings ‘Andante, Andante’.
Moulin Rouge! (2001) at ‘Movie by Moonlight’ in Bath
A few years back, I was lucky enough to attend ‘Movie by Moonlight’, an outdoor cinema experience held in Bath’s Royal Victoria Park. We all crowded around a huge projector screen, armed with ciders, camping chairs and blankets, ready for a screening of Baz Luhrmann’s Moulin Rouge!. The organisers had even brought in a pizza truck, so you could go nab a freshly made pizza before the screening started and nosh down on it throughout – a brilliant idea even though the queue was HUGE. One of my favourite parts of the night was actually something that happened before the movie started: everyone joined together in a giant chorus line, doing the can-can à la the dancers of the Moulin Rouge stage, in an effort to try and break the world record. It was absolutely hilarious and set the mood for the rest of the evening, which was made up of singing, dancing, and oh-ing and ah-ing along to the classic movie musical.
Back to the Future (1985) in Stratford-upon-Avon
Having seen ’80s sci-fi Back to the Future probably *too* many times at home, it was such an incredible experience to be able to finally see it on the big screen surrounded by a large group of fellow film fans. The atmosphere of an outdoor cinema is one that truly can’t be beaten. Everyone gets their snacks ready, lays out their picnic blanket or camping chair, and snuggles into their coat as the sun begins to set and the film reel gets loaded up. Although I didn’t personally dress up, it was brilliant to see lots of other people wearing ’80s inspired clothing, some even dressing up to look just like protagonist Marty McFly. I have been to a few outdoor cinema experiences, but this one stood out amongst the rest due to the pure escapism and entertainment value of Back to the Future. When the opening titles start and you hear ‘The Power of Love’ kick in, you know you’re in for a good time!