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NYC's Best Outdoor Movie Screenings for Summer 2018

Outdoor movie screenings take over the city of New York during the summer, and you’ll find them in almost every borough. Check out our top eight picks for outdoor movie screenings series, ranging from beachfront flicks to movies on the pier.

NYC Outdoor Movies Summer 2018: Bryant Park Movie Nights

Home to an ice skating rink in the winter and the Winter Village during the holidays, you can bet Bryant Park packs in the free entertainment during the summer as well. Every Monday evening from June 18 to August 20, films will screen starting at sunset on the lawn. Expect some competition for a patch of grass, so the earlier you show up, the better (the lawn opens at 5pm). This year, the Hester Street Fair will also send food vendors to camp out around the lawn so you’ll have great eats along with the show. The program usually features a Warner Brothers cartoon before each feature-length movie. Bryant Park, 41 W. 40th St., 212-768-4242,

NYC Outdoor Movies Summer 2018: Hudson RiverFlicks

The Big Sick

The Big Sick

The piers at Hudson River Park will screen nighttime films in July and August, and they already have some great picks lined up. Big Hit Wednesdays will show recent hit movies at Pier 63 in Chelsea. They’re starting off with last year’s stellar Get Out, followed by others like The Big Sick, Wonder Woman, and Lady Bird. Big Hit Wednesdays will show every Wednesday from July 11 to August 22 and will provide free popcorn for each screening! At Family Fridays at Pier 46 in the West Village, you can look forward to movies like Moana, Jumanji (the original 1995 version, that is), Paddington 2, Spice World, and Karate Kid. Family Fridays start up July 13 and last until August 24. Two special screenings of the musicals Chicago and Frozen are part of a short sing-along series on July 26 and August 23. Those singalongs will be held at Pier 96 off Midtown West.

NYC Outdoor Movies Summer 2018: Coney Island Flicks on the Beach

Take the train to Coney Island for a day of carnival rides, hot dogs, and sunbathing, then top off your summer fun with a movie! For eight Mondays this summer, relax on a beach blanket for Coney Island Flicks on the Beach. Check the website for a movie schedule; just know the show starts at 8pm! 1001 Boardwalk West, 718-594-7895,

NYC Outdoor Movies Summer 2018: Intrepid Museum’s Summer Movie Series

Wonder Woman

Wonder Woman

The U.S. aircraft carrier Intrepid has retired from duty and become a museum of science and technology that’s well worth a visit in its own right. On summer Fridays, you’ll also get to sit atop The Intrepid and watch a film for free! This year’s screenings, occurring on intermittent Fridays throughout the summer, include Top Gun, Wonder Woman, Dunkirk, and Ghostbusters. Free tickets will be distributed beginning at 7pm and continue until the space reaches capacity. Pier 86 at W 46 St. and 12 Ave., 877-957-SHIP,

NYC Outdoor Movies Summer 2018: MOCACinema

The Last Dragon

The Last Dragon

The Museum of the Chinese in America is screening four films this June in Chinatown’s Columbus Park. All films consider some aspect of Chinese culture, whether it’s the role of women in ancient China or the singular kung-fu legend that is Bruce Lee. Mulan will screen June 8, The NinjaGo LEGO Movie on June 15, Pushing Hands the 22nd, and Berry Gordy’s The Last Dragon June 29. The event is free and begins at sunset. Columbus Park ball field,

NYC Outdoor Movies Summer 2018: Socrates Sculpture Park Outdoor Cinema

Film buffs, this one’s for you. At Socrates Sculpture Park in Astoria, Queens, the movies are international selections like Monsoon Wedding, The Young Girls of Rochefort, Spirit of the Beehive, Tampopo, Kedi, and The Passionate Thief. Fittingly, this series is partnered with Film Forum, a theater in Manhattan known for screening lesser-known treasures as well as foreign and classic cinema. These screenings (Wednesdays from July 11 to August 29) will also be preceded by dance and musical performances reflecting the national culture of the film showing that evening. 32-01 Vernon Boulevard, 718-956-1819 x105,

NYC Outdoor Movies Summer 2018: Summer on the Hudson

Wednesdays at sunset, come to Pier 1 in the Upper West Side for a family movie. The lineup begins with Who Framed Roger Rabbit on July 11, and continues with Sita Sings the Blues, Toy Story 3, Coco, Summer Wars, and WALL-E in subsequent weeks. On August 22, the series will round out with an excellent Pixar film (also, fair warning, a tearjerker), Up. The space opens at 6:30pm, and film will start at sunset around 8:30. Pier 1 at W 70th St.,

NYC Outdoor Movies Summer 2018: Brooklyn Bridge Park Movies with A View

Brooklyn Bridge Park offers an eight-week series of film screenings during July and August. Mark your calendar for Thursday nights, when you can lay down a blanket and watch movies on the Harbor View Lawn. The bright city lights of Manhattan make an indelible backdrop along the East River, which provides a cool breeze on hot summer nights! This year’s lineup has yet to be announced, although past years have provided a well-curated slate of cult favorites and classics like Office Space and Casablanca. Admission is free and seating is first come, first serve. Brooklyn Bridge Park, 334 Furman St.,

About the Author

Merrill Lee Girardeau lives and writes in Brooklyn.

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