Don’t spend a summer night in a dark movie theater or shell out the cash for a flick. Instead head to one of these many free outdoor film series around Brooklyn. Bring some friends and pack a picnic and movie hop around the borough. From waterfront film series to screenings in the backyard of a popular Carroll Gardens bar, there are tons of places to catch a summer movie. A word of warning, Brooklyn is teeming with mosquitos in the summer months, so don’t forget to bring bug spray. If you really want to fit in with the locals, be sure to use an organic brand.
Although it isn’t free, Rooftop Film Summer Series is worth a mention. The beloved film series screens films at various edgy places around Brooklyn. This is the 20th year of The Rooftop Films 2016 Summer Series, where they screen "Underground Movies Outdoors," every weekend from May 29-August 22. If you want to see an indie film at the Old American Can Factory in the Gowanus or collection of short films at Industry City in... Sunset Park, you should check out their diverse and notable summer schedule.
Some film festivals run only six weeks; others run from May to September.
Amazingly, you can catch a free film every day of the week through much of this summer in Brooklyn.
Outdoor films (many are free) are shown on Mondays (Coney Island), Tuesdays (Red Hook), Wednesdays (McCarren Park in Williamsburg), Thursdays (Brooklyn Bridge Park), Fridays and Saturdays in various venues around the borough, and on Sundays (Fort Greene).
Edited by Alison Lowenstein
01 of 06
What could be more fun? Welcome to Movies on the Beach in Coney Island. As part of the historic area's makeover, you can enjoy free films on Monday nights. The movies are shown on a forty-foot screen. Grab a hot dog at Nathans, or spend the afternoon exploring the NY Aquarium (open 10 a.m.-6 p.m.) and walking along the Atlantic Ocean boardwalk. What a great summertime thing to do in Brooklyn!
02 of 06
Watch a film on Valentino Pier in Red Hook with views of the Statue of Liberty. History buffs will get a kick out of seeing a flick next to a Civil-War era warehouse. Take in the views of the harbor as you watch classic flicks in the increasingly trendy Red Hook section of Brooklyn. The summer series takes place Tuesdays at sundown. You can pack a picnic or pick up some good eats provided by the rotating list of various local restaurants that sponsor the weekly film series. This season’s restaurants include Fort Defiance, Early Bird Foods, and many others. Check their schedule for a list of films and restaurant’s featured at that flick.
03 of 06
WEDNESDAYS: FREE SummerScreen in McCarren Park, Outdoor Movies
SummerScreen, launched in 2005, is a hugely popular free outdoor film series in Williamsburg's McCarren Park's ball fields. The films, presented by EPIX, are shown on Wednesday evenings. Bring your blanket, food and drink, and settle in for a great evening.
04 of 06
See what's playing at the most spectacular outdoor theater in New York City. Watch the sun set over New York Harbor before the film, and enjoy free DJ music as well. First come,first seated; there's limited room on the lawn.Continue to 5 of 6 below.
05 of 06
Fridays at Narrows Botanic Garden
You might have to pack some allergy meds, but it’s worth the hassle to view movies in this picturesque Bay Ridge botanic garden at their film series Movies at Narrows Botanic Garden. On Friday June 24th, they will show the Night at The Museum at 8:30pm and on Friday July 8th, sing along with Grease.
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Rooftop Film Series in Brooklyn: Thursday, Friday, Saturdays
For a taste of what's new in the film world, check out New York's Rooftop Film Series. The venues vary, but Rooftop Films are mostly shown in, or rather, on, in buildings in Bushwick, Industry City, and Gowanus. Entrance is $10, and there's often a discussion afterward — and sometimes an after party too!