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David Lean Cinema

Cinemas, Independent Croydon
5 out of 5 stars
(72user reviews)
A picture of the David Lean Cinema

Time Out says

Located in an attractive grade II listed clock tower in Croydon, this community-run cinema screens arthouse films, classic re-releases and new blockbusters in intimate surroundings. The staff (mostly volunteers) are super friendly and the prices affordable – not your standard multiplex offering then.



Address: Croydon Clocktower
Katherine Street
Transport: East Croydon rail
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Now showing

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    • Saturday February 22 2020

    Users say (72)

    5 out of 5 stars

    Average User Rating

    4.9 / 5

    Rating Breakdown

    • 5 star:65
    • 4 star:7
    • 3 star:0
    • 2 star:0
    • 1 star:0
    2 people listening
    1 of 1 found helpful

    A great small local with tickets only costing £8 and you don't get all the adverts that you get with the branded cinemas. Its run by volunteers and the atmosphere is very relaxed. Since discovering it this past month I have been 3 times"! Keep up the great work.

    1 of 1 found helpful

    Local people have worked together to keep this fabulous little cinema open despite all the odds. The films are chosen carefully and special screenings and events organised. It's a comfortable place to go as a single woman.

    Lovely cinema, reasonably priced with a pleasant bar area.  I have seen some fantastic films here that I would not have had the chance to see without the David Lean cinema and their wonderful volunteers.

    Wonderful little cinema showing interesting unusual films as well as some good mainstream movies

    This friendly cinema shows most of the films you want to see and lots of films that you really should see. It also creates memorable events, such as local Russian musicians in the interval of Dr Zhivago and a trans Atlantic Skype Q&A with the director of a film set in Lesotho.

    Knocked a star off cos the film showings are too early. This was like an arthouse when I first arrived in Croydon. Then the Tories maliciously closed it. A volunteer group, with support of the new Labour administration on the council, have reopened it. It's not open enough but deserves support.

    Excellent choice of films, enthusiastic helpers and supporters, intimate atmosphere.

    Going to the cinema is once more an enjoyable experience, I love the selection of interesting and thought provoking films.

    The David Lean is run by enthusiastic and knowledgeable people, and shows some great films that it would be hard to catch if it were not for this cinema; we've seen some gems that we would not have known about if it were not for the fantastic schedule put together by Adrian and the team. A warm welcome and a lovely bar area make for a great experience.

    A wide choice of culturally excellent films, past and present, are shown here, in a friendly atmosphere and at various convenient times - late night for the young, afternoons for OAPs like me and even mornings for mums and babies! I saw the most amazing film here. "Into Great Silence" is a documentary filmed in a French monastery whose order is silent. Never heard such wonderful sounds.

    The David Lean Cinema is a very small friendly cinema with character, totally unlike the large multi-screen cinemas elsewhere. They show a varied selection of good films, the seats are comfortable, and there is no-one around you eating popcorn!

    An intimate cinema with a mere 68 seats but an atmosphere that is welcoming and dedicated to film. The staff are all volunteers and their common bond is the love of cinema - good cinema - no popcorn or idle chatter when watching the programme, just true 'cinema buffs'! Long may it last.

    Because David Lean was born in Croydon abnd it is important to remember his legacy. Also the cinema is working with local community groups & individuals to ensure that all tastes & ages are catered for.

    Lovely little cinema with a great range of films catering to all tastes. Something different which only survived since withdrawal of council funding by the hard work of volunteers. Pro]ices are way below commercial cinemas

    Cosy venue and shows films not shown in the vue. E.g The Dressmaker etc.

    The enthusiastic, passionate DL helpers serve up a wide variety of amazing delicacies that you'd rarely see in the big cinemas. And there's less crisp mauling in the audience. Many congrats team DL. Susie cornfield

    We need the David Lean cinema. It is unique to Croydon. We are gradually losing our identity and Croydon is developing at a fast pace. Let us keep something that is an oasis in the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

    It used to be the only place locally to see independent and foreign films. The the council shut it. Thanks to years of patient effort and against all the odds, we are able to enjoy it again. It could be renamed The Adrian Winchester cinema !

    Its very easy to get to; it is showing a very good range of films outside the normal commercial range, its web site is a joy to use and the seats, particularly for seniors, are very reasonably priced. A real asset to the community

    It's super cosy, friendly and has a real sense of love for cinema which gets diluted in so many of the large chains

    Volunteer run by some experts in their field who are also enthusiatic about the quality of films that are shown. Cosy and centrally located.

    Great films that are not mainstream. Very friendly staff and relaxed atmosphere. Would definitely recommend!

    This is a small, friendly cinema showing a wide range of films, including foreign films not shown at mainstream cinemas. It is entirely staffed by volunteers who are friendly and welcoming. There's a bar and you can take a drink into the cinema. In a nutshell: civilised filmgoing.

    Small, friendly, and with an audience of true film-lovers. Great programme each month with a mixture of classics, new releases and, best of all, intriguing foreign films which would be very hard to find elsewhere. Prices are suited for those of most slender means, and this venue adds enormously to culture in the area.

    Now run by volunteers, this may not be quite the gem it once was before it was idiotically closed by the local council. However, it still offers locals a chance to see films that may not have been given an airing in the local multiplex. It is also reasonably priced, has a small cafe attached to it and the cinema itself is cosy but well appointed. The only drawback is that the voluntary nature necessitates a limited number of screenings each week (Tuesday and Thursday only).

    Interesting films shown in cosy, comfortable surroundings - with a good adjoining bar.

    The David Lean is a little gem of a cinema, showing brilliant films both old and new.

    The David Lean is a little gem of a cinema, showing brilliant films both old and new.

    Thanks to a group of dedicated volunteers, it has risen like phoenix from the ashes of the former Tory council's arts policy. If only they were able to show a full programme again

    A much-loved venue only open due to the efforts of local people who brought it back to life as a non-profit community initiative, following a three-year closure. It's a cosy 68 seat cinema in an interesting location where the 1990s Clocktower complex meets the Victorian Town Hall. And the programming includes imaginative film choices that you would often have to travel some distance to see elsewhere.

    Friendly and accessible and always has a varied choice of good films you don't get anywhere else.

    Great little cinema. If you miss the latest film you can see it a few weeks later and they also show some foreign and low budget films that aren't shown at the mutliplexes. I renewed my interest in films when I discovered this cinema. There's also a nice bar area.

    Great films no hassle with other people's mobiles and all round courtesy from both film goers and volunteers, good access.

    Inspired by the late Ronnie Corbett and after articles on, this art house cinema was rescued by the Save the David Lean Campaign after closure by Tory cuts, and it now flourishes offering a terrific selection of movies away from the dire multiplexes. A real triumph for local activism

    Good films, pleasant environment (no popcorn) helpful volunteers. A very pleasant place to spend an evening.

    Runs by volunteers it is a small gem in the heart of Croydon, showing a range of great films mainly in the afternoon and evening about twice a week. The excellent programme includes foreign films, documentaries, classics as well as the best of latest releases. There are even showings for Babes in arms. Highly recommended.

    A great selection of films from blockbusters to art house foreign, intimate cinema based in one of the town's most opulent buildings.

    A brilliant little arthouse cinema, the only one located further out than Brixton, run entirely by volunteers. It was resurrected from the ashes of local council cuts 2 years ago after an active and popular campaign fr its re-opening. An intimate, friendly place with only 68 seats, but these professional-standard volunteers make it pay its way with no external funding.

    This 68 seat venue much loved by locals was mothballed by Croydon Council in 2011 Arts cuts. Volunteer run CIC group, The Save The David Lean Cinema Campaign reopened the cinema on 24th March 2014 and are showing on average 9 films a month of the same diverse and Art House quality that cinema goers came to expect from the original. Great atmosphere, friendly volunteers and top quality films.


    Croydon's very own art-house cinema!  Excellent mix of films, ranging from niche documentaries, foreign/arthouse films to recent multiplex movies (albeit those usually aimed at the grey pound).  Well run and friendly, worth booking in advance if you can as screenings often sell out.  The Clocktower is a Croydon treasure as well, a beautiful building - it ain't all 60s skyscrapers!

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