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ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

The Best Outdoor Cinemas in Auckland to Check Out Over Summer

Pack a picnic and get comfy under the stars of Tāmaki Makaurau.
By Priscilla Southcombe
December 12, 2019
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The Best Outdoor Cinemas in Auckland to Check Out Over Summer

Pack a picnic and get comfy under the stars of Tāmaki Makaurau.
By Priscilla Southcombe
December 12, 2019
  shares

There's nothing quite like an Auckland summer. The abundance of beaches, bars and activities make filling up the long, sun-drenched days easy — no matter where in the city you are. Even the winter activities that we all love are given a summer makeover; none as good as the age-old movie date.

Summer brings the blockbusters, the sequels we've all been waiting for, the remakes and, of course, the latest Christmas movies to get you in the holiday spirit. When the sun is out, it's hard to think about being inside a darkened theatre, no matter how badly you want to sit with some popcorn and relax while watching Disney's best. Give your dinner-and-a-movie date night a much needed summer glow with Auckland's best outdoor cinemas. Whether it's new releases or an old classic, these outdoor cinemas are sure to keep you entertained.

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AMERICAN EXPRESS OPENAIR CINEMA, WESTERN SPRINGS

Ditch the picnic blanket, the American Express Openair Cinemas in Western Springs has you covered with a range of seating options. These include premium options for those looking to woo a special someone this summer. Add an air lounger or a blanket to your booking, or even reserved seating along with wait service in the Prime Video Lounge. Then, sit back and catch The Joker, Hustlers, Last Christmas, Jojo Rabbit, Frozen II and many more flicks under the stars. Not only does the outdoor cinema have the latest movies, but it also boasts a fully-stocked bar and delicious movie snacks.

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MOVIES IN PARKS, VARIOUS

Hosted by Auckland Council, Movies in Parks is back for 2020 with 26 movies set to play out under the stars of Tāmaki Makaurau. Held from January to April, this movie series gets Aucklanders into our best parks and reserves while watching a range of movies across genres for all ages. And the best part? Each session is free, meaning you can stock up on snacks beforehand. Get out and about with movies held all over Auckland, from Stanmore Bay to West Harbour and Ōtāhuhu. Catch classics such as Grease alongside new favourites Aquaman at all your favourite neighbourhood parks and reserves. And make sure you catch the secret screening at Brains Park in Kelston on Saturday, 18 April.

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SILO CINEMA, WYNYARD QUARTER

An oasis in Auckland's inner city, Silo Park has become a playground for locals and tourists alike. People of all ages gather to eat drink, play basketball and spend the summer days in this lively waterfront hub. Silo Cinema is a true summer ritual with crowds gathering every year to enjoy the free cinematic experience created on the former petrochemical silos. This summer is no different with the best of Hollywood coming to Silo Park. Catch Rocketman, The Princess Bride and Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, and keep an eye on the People's Choice screening in late February. Remember to take something cosy as it can get chilly by the water.

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FILMS IN THE SQUARE, AOTEA SQUARE

This one is for the film buffs, for those who inspire to make the next hit Netflix doco and everyone in between who loves good cinema. As part of its annual entertainment series, Auckland Live will be screening a curated selection of films in Aotea Square every Thursday evening from December 5, 2019 to February 9, 2020. At Films in the Square you can expect to see the likes of Hunt for the Wilderpeople, Wings of Desire, Poi E, or head by on a Sunday afternoon to catch one of many documentary greats including Hip Hop-eration, Dancing in Jaffa and China Love. The young ones are looked after too with screenings of The Gruffalo and The Magical World of Margaret Mahy. A new take on the outdoor cinema, this inner city lineup is sure to attract the masses so get in quick with your blanket to secure the best spot.

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MOVIE ON THE GRASS, CORNWALL PARK

Cornwall Park is a true Auckland icon with flocks of people heading there on the weekends or weekday mornings to get in a quick walk, give the dog a run or get their coffee fix amidst the rolling green fields. Once a year, Cornwall Park hosts the ever-popular Movie on the Grass, bringing the big screen to the park to showcase one of New Zealand's fines. This year, enjoy the 1986 classic Footrot Flats: The Dog's Tale as well as a special screening of a short documentary, Fools & Dreamers, a New Zealand film released in 2019. Grab your blanket, family, date or bestie and pack a picnic while reminiscing about one of the country's most famous comics and his beloved characters for this free, one-off event.

Published on December 12, 2019 by Priscilla Southcombe

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