Cinema

Current highlights from Barcelona's English-language cinema scene

Film

While We’re Young

Ben Stiller and Naomi Watts shine in Noah Baumbach's confident and charming latest indie comedy

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Film

A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night

This Tehran-set hipster vampire movie will delight fans of David Lynch and Jim Jarmusch

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Film

Ruth & Alex

As well as being soul-crushingly tedious, ‘Ruth & Alex’ is also incredibly self-satisfied

Time Out says
  • 2 out of 5 stars
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Film

Ricki and the Flash

Meryl Streep stars as a fading rocker in this off-kilter tale of rock & roll redemption from a master of the form

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Film

Vacation

This lazy retread of Harold Ramis’s 1983 'Vacation' sours everything that’s made that film such a favourite

Time Out says
  • 1 out of 5 stars
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Film

Mr Holmes

Ian McKellen's Sherlock is a cantankerous 93-year-old living by the seaside in Kent and keeping bees

Time Out says
  • 3 out of 5 stars
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Film

Trainwreck

Amy Schumer’s comedy about a commitment-phobic New York writer is the funniest film of the summer

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Film

The Man from UNCLE

A familiar story of spies, disloyalty, twists, double-crossing and a nuclear plot to destroy the globe

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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More film reviews

Original-language cinemas

Cinemas

Verdi HD

The five-screen Verdi and Verdi Park, its four-screen annexe on the next street, have transformed this corner of Gràcia with a diverse programme of independent, mainly European and Asian cinema. At peak times, chaos reigns; arrive early and make sure you don't confuse the line to enter for the line to buy tickets.

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Cinemas

Renoir Floridablanca

Renoir-Floridablanca screens up to eight independent, offbeat American, British and Spanish films in original version per day, though note that programming tends towards the worthy.

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Cinemas

Cinemes Maldà

In its latest incarnation, the well-loved Cinema Maldà is now showing indie and arthouse films. Cinema in original version with subtitles.

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Cinemas

Filmoteca de Catalunya

The government-funded Filmoteca is a little dry for some tastes, offering comprehensive seasons of cinema's more recondite auteurs alongside better-known classics. Overlapping cycles last two or three weeks, with each film screened at least twice at different times. Books of 10 and 50 tickets bring down the price per film to a negligible amount. The 'Filmo' also runs an excellent library of film-related books, videos and magazines.

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Cinemas

Yelmo Cines Icaria

This vast multiplex has all the atmosphere of the near-empty mall that surrounds it. But what it lacks in charm, it makes up for in choice, with 15 screens offering blockbusters plus mainstream foreign and Spanish releases. Weekends are seat-specific, so queues tend to be slow-moving; it's worth booking your seat online before you go.

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Cinemas

Phenomena

The Phenomena cinema, which holds 415 film fans and has one of the biggest screens in all of Catalonia, boasts a latest-generation 4k projector, as well as 35 mm and 70 mm projectors as well as the best sound systems, including DTS, SDDS and the multidimensional Dolby Atmos. The cinema project, led by Nacho Cerdà, carries the philosophy that has characterized the Phenomena Experience screenings for the last four years: a programme that features cycles dedicated to big-name directors, kids' sessions, Grindhouse, re-releases, films that were before never released in Barcelona, the legendary double feature, and other surprises. It's a varied programme where you can enjoy classics of the silver screen as well as contemporary films that will show in dubbed versions and in their original language with Spanish subtitles.

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Cinemas

Multicines Balmes

This cinema has 12 screens (two in 3-D) and specialises in commercial films in their original language with subtitles.

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Cinemas

Verdi Park HD

The five-screen Verdi and Verdi Park, its four-screen annexe on the next street, have transformed this corner of Gràcia with a diverse programme of independent, mainly European and Asian cinema. At peak times, chaos reigns; arrive early and make sure you don't confuse the line to enter for the line to buy tickets.

Read more
Cinemas

Cinemes Texas

This cinema in Gràcia has four screens and shows a variety of films. The big draw for the locals is the subtitles are in Catalan. The big draw for everyone else is the films are in their original language, and some Catalan films even have English subtitles. And everyone is happy about the low price of €2 or €3. This is likely due to the films showing here slightly later than their premiere release date.

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Cinemas

Cinemes Méliès

This small, two-screen cinema is the nearest that Barcelona comes to an arthouse theatre, with an idiosyncratic roster of accessible classics alongside more recent films that aren't quite commercial enough for general release. This is the place to bone up on your Wilder, Antonioni, Hitchcock and others, with up to eight films per week.

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Our favourites

Film

While We’re Young

Maturity is a slippery staircase in the comedies of American indie filmmaker Noah Baumbach (‘The Squid and the Whale’, ‘Greenberg’, ‘Frances Ha’). Baumbach delights in puffing up and then deflating characters who aren’t quite ready to grow up. ‘While We’re Young’ is the writer-director’s confident and charming latest, and it plays more like a Woody Allen-ish parody than any of his other movies – a shift that hasn’t required any sacrifice in insight, heart or bite.Josh and Cornelia (Ben Stiller and Naomi Watts, both terrific) are Generation-Xers in a marriage cooled by stalling ambitions and a failure to join their friends’ baby parade. Josh is a documentary maker who has been labouring over the same dull film for years, while his wife’s father (Charles Grodin) is a documentary legend in the Albert Maysles mould who can barely conceal his disappointment in his son-in-law.For Josh and Cordelia, it’s sexless nights on the iPad until the unexpected affections of a much younger couple, Jamie and Darby (Adam Driver and Amanda Seyfried), energise their lives. Suddenly there are post-ironic hats to buy, hip hop dance classes to flail around in and trips to hipster hotspots in Brooklyn. Complicating things is the fact that Jamie is a young filmmaker, apparently in awe of Josh’s work – not something Josh has ever had to deal with before.Baumbach could have rocked this register and made a perfectly fun comedy out of the premise: Josh and Cornelia marvel at the twentysomethings’ loft, co

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Film

A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night

With ‘Twilight’ in the rear-view mirror, movie vampires are going goth. After Jim Jarmusch’s ‘Only Lovers Left Alive’, along comes this pulse-quickening debut by Ana Lily Amirpour. She’s an LA-based director who infuses her night-time tale with elements of David Lynch, spaghetti westerns and gender politics. The movie takes place in a kind of alternative Tehran, here called Bad City and peopled with weirdos. Mainly, we follow the old-fashioned attraction between Arash (Arash Marandi), a hipster dealing with his dad’s debts, and the dark-lipped unnamed woman of the title (Sheila Vand), who’s lonely enough to keep her toothy instincts in check. The plot’s tired blood is warmed up considerably by style; all in all, this is an intoxicating blend of eerie horror and ’80s pop, made by an filmmaker to keep an eye on.

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Film

Ricki and the Flash

Ageing rocker Ricki Randazzo (Meryl Streep) barely holds on to her grocery checkout job during the daytime. She’s sarcastic, bitter and chatty. But those liabilities become assets at night, when she becomes the frontwoman of a scruffy bar band and her local fans howl appreciatively through the hits. This zesty, defiantly awkward shambles of a film might be tagged a domestic drama, as it plucks near-penniless Ricki from her beer-soaked California stage and flings her to the Midwest. Back in the suburbs she has to deal with her wealthy ex-husband (Kevin Kline) and their suicidal grown-up daughter (Mamie Gummer, Streep’s real-life daughter), a victim of Ricki’s long-ago abandonment. Tough stares and words await, very much of a piece with screenwriter Diablo Cody’s earlier credits, especially her underrated comedy ‘Young Adult’. Director Jonathan Demme has an impossibly rich CV of female empowerment (‘Married to the Mob’), musical euphoria (‘Stop Making Sense’) and failed American dreams (‘Melvin and Howard’), and this movie lets him do everything he’s terrific at. ‘Ricki and the Flash’ gives Streep her most emotionally blocked character in years, and she delivers it without caricature. There’s an underlying realness to her that defies glibness. Ricki is graced by an angel at her side in the form of Greg (real-life musician Rick Springfield), her boyfriend and lead guitarist, and she finds her way to the soul of several songs, including a Lady Gaga cover. There’s devastating c

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Film

Trainwreck

Amy Schumer is a comedy superwoman. Her stand-up is funny-as-hell; she’s a viral sensation with her ‘Inside Amy Schumer’ sketches and lately she’s become every feminist’s new girl crush. Now add to that list: she’s the best thing to happen to Hollywood since the Tina Fey/Amy Poehler double act at the Golden Globes. Schumer’s new autobiographical comedy ‘Trainwreck’, about a commitment-phobic New York writer, is the funniest film of the summer, so outrageous and hilarious that it’ll make your bladder go weak. The posters say ‘from the guy who brought you “Bridesmaids”’, meaning comedy super-producer Judd Apatow, who produces and directs Schumer’s script. ‘Trainwreck’ is more of a straightforward romcom than ‘Bridesmaids’, except that here Schumer plays the traditional ‘man’ role. She’s hard-partying, promiscuous Amy, a writer for a Maxim-like men’s magazine that publishes articles like ‘How to talk your girlfriend into a three-way’. In a genius piece of casting, Tilda Swinton is Amy’s no-nonsense boss (unrecognisable behind inch-thick fake-tan and a Kate Middleton blow-dry). Amy has mastered the art of sleeping around (four different actors are credited as ‘One-Night Stand Guy’) and her number-one rule is never to sleep over on a date. The sex is all hilariously awkward. But when she’s assigned to interview a sports surgeon (Bill Hader, adorable), she cracks and gets serious. ‘Trainwreck’ isn’t perfect. Its happy-ever-after ending feels like a cop-out. But you can forgive th

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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More recommended films