5 free outdoor movie series to check out in Boston this summer - Metro US

5 free outdoor movie series to check out in Boston this summer


Watching a movie at the park on a steamy summer night is one of the perks of living in the city. You’ll have plenty of chances to enjoy an evening under the stars this season with a slew of outdoor movie series. Since many of the flicks usually skew towards families and mainstream tastes, you’re out of luck if you want to see “Goodfellas” or “Pulp Fiction.” But if you’re looking for a way to get the kids outside while still letting them stare at a screen, check out one of these movie nights around Boston.

Cinema Somerville Outdoor Movie Series

Those unmoved by typical outdoor summer movie fare should hit up this series, taking place each Thursday in July, and offering a refreshingly random, decidedly old-school set of offerings, such as 1946’s “Sherlock Holmes: Dressed to Kill” (July 6) and Roger Corman 1960’s oddity “The Little Shop of Horrors” (July 13). The series also includes screenings of 1954’s “The Last Time I Saw Paris” (July 20), about an American journalist in Paris (Van Johnson) covering the close of World War II who finds a welcome admirer in Elizabeth Taylor, and the 1941 British mystery film “The Ghost Train” (July 27), about some passengers who get stuck at a supposedly haunted train station.

July 6 through July 27, The Growing Center, 22 Vinal Ave., Somerville, scatvsomerville.com

Movies by Moonlight

The Boston Harbor Hotel offer a rather eclectic series of crowd pleasers this year, including “Moonstruck” (June 23), Boston-bred Chris Evans’ “Captain America” (July 7), “The Notebook” (July 14), “The Little Mermaid” (July 28), “Casablanca” (August 11) and “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” (August 25). As you can see, the selections lean towards rom-coms, maybe because the harbor scenery is already so romantic, so it just works nicely. That said, there’s a touch of action thrown in for spice, including the closing film of the season, “Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl” (September 8).

June 9 through September 8, Boston Harbor Hotel, 70 Rowes Wharf, Boston, bhh.com

Free Friday Flicks

This annual summer movie series is heavy on the family fare, opening June 23 with “The Secret Life of Pets,” starring Milton native Jenny Slate, and trotting out “Sing” (July 14), the live action “Jungle Book” (July 21), “Finding Dory” (July 28), “Moana” (August 4) and “Lego Batman” (August 11) as well. The last two picks are slightly more adult, with “Dr. Strange” (August 18) and “Star Wars: Rogue One” (August 25). Pro tip: if you’re on the north side of Boston, they’ll also be showing the same set of movies on Saturdays starting July 8 in Somerville’s Sylvester Baxter Riverfront Park.

June 23 through August 25, DCR Hatch Shell, 47 David G Mugar Way, Boston, boston.cbslocal.com/flicks

Magic 106.7 Family Film Festival

This series at the Pru is very similar to the ones at the Hatch Shell and Sylvester Baxter Riverfront Park, playing five of the same movies, and also focusing on family-friendly stuff. The differing picks include 1982’s “Annie” (July 1), Steven Speilberg’s recent Roald Dahl adaptation “The BFG” (July 15), Disney’s recent remake of “Pete’s Dragon” (July 22) and the live action “Beauty and the Beast” (August 19), starring Hermio—ahem, Emma Watson.

July 1 through August 26, South Garden, Prudential Center, 800 Boylston St., Boston, prudentialcenter.com

Mayor Walsh’s Movie Nights

The Mayor himself presents this roving series of outdoor screenings in neighborhoods around Boston. “Wall-E” lands in Mattapan’s Hunt/Almont Park August 7, “E.T.” in Dorchester’s Savin Hill Park August 17, “Pets” in Allston’s Ringer Park August 28,  “Honey I Shrunk the Kids” at the Frog Pond on Boston Common September 8 and “Top Gun” at the Frog pond September 15, because only Tom Cruise can truly declare an end to summer, and especially the summer outdoor movie season. Why? Hollywood rules.

August 7 through September 15, various locations, Boston, boston.gov

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