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Float-in Cinema
Photograph: David Parry/PA Wire

Outdoor cinema in London

The best places to see open-air movies in the capital this summer

By Time Out Film

We’ve all watched a lot of things on our televisions these past months – obviously, in between learning a multitude of languages (habari ya jioni!) and making incredible strides in the field of sourdough. The good news is that the big-screen experience is inching its way back as a viable evening – or afternoon – going-out option. Cinemas are reopening and the summer’s great innovation, drive-in cinema, continues to pack in punters with Puntos.

Outdoor cinema, usually such a staple of the London summer, is back too – in new socially distanced forms. There are new venues and new experiences, like cycle-in cinema, to accommodate movie-lovers who want to switch off the small screen and upscale their film-watching under the stars. Here are the options available.

Recommended: London and UK cinema listings, film reviews and exclusive interviews

Outdoor cinema in summer 2020

Bar Elba
Bar Elba
Photograph: Bar Elba

Bar Elba

One of the very few rooftop cinemas to open this summer, Waterloo’s Bar Elba has been welcoming filmgoers since early July. Social-distancing rules and extra hygiene measures are in ace – expect to be sanitised – and waiters deliver popcorn, hotdogs and retro sweets to your seat. Because they’re taking place in a bar, the screenings are rated 18, even if the movies aren’t. Standard tickets cost £15 and include a snack.


When July-October

Summer highlights ‘Blade Runner’, ‘Mean Girls’, ‘Hustlers’, ‘Tremors’, ‘The Invisible Man’


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