Prevent the summer doldrums by escaping to the magical world of cinema over the next couple of months. Lay out on a blanket and have a picnic under the stars at an outdoor screening or take advantage of a screening in an air-conditioned theater. Either way, there are plenty of films ranging from classic films to recently released blockbusters to choose from that can be enjoyed for free or a low cost.
AFI Silver (8663 Colesville Rd., Silver Spring, Md.) holds a few film series honoring various actors and directors. The theater holds a retrospective on director Stanley Kubrick running through Sept. 12. Films on rotation include “A Clockwork Orange,” “Dr. Strangelove,” “Eyes Wide Shut,” “The Shining” and more. This year, AFI honored George Clooney with its 46th Life Achievement Award. Clooney’s films such as “Confessions of a Dangerous Mind,” “Fantastic Mr. Fox” and “O Brother, Where Art Thou?” will be shown until Sept. 12. AFI is also recognizing the work of late actor William Holden with screenings such as “Sabrina,” “Sunset Blvd.” and “The Wild Bunch” running until Sept. 12. Tickets range from $8-13. For a complete list of films, visit silver.afi.com.
Bethesda Outdoor Movie Series returns to Bethesda’s Woodmont Triangle (Norfolk and Auburn Ave., Bethesda, Md.) starting July 24 with a screening of “Remember the Titans.” Other screenings will include “Casablanca” (July 25), “The Big Sick” (July 26), “Mean Girls” (July 27) and “The Post” (July 28). Admission is free and all screenings begin at 9 p.m. Visit bethesda.org for details.
Comcast Outdoor Film Festival, a free family film festival, takes place at Strathmore (10701 Rockville Pike., North Bethesda, Md.) Aug. 23-26. Screenings planned are “Coco” (Aug. 23), “Black Panther” (Aug. 24), “The Lion King” (Aug. 25) and “Wonder Woman” (Aug. 26). Concessions, which includes popcorn and other snacks, opens at 7:30 p.m. each night. Film screenings begin at dusk (around 8:30 p.m.). The festival benefits the NIH Children’s Charities. For more information, visit filmfestnih.org.
Congressional Cemetery (1801 E St., S.E.) has its film series Cinematery until Sept. 14. “Jurassic Park” screens on July 20. There will be a Cinematery VIP Tour for this screening at 7 p.m.Attendees will receive a one-hour guided tour featuring stops at the graves of notable inventors and innovators. Tickets are $25 and include the tour, two drink tickets and the film screening. “Close Encounters of the Third Kind” also screens on Aug. 17 and “The Sixth Sense” on Sept. 14. All screenings are BYOB and food. There is a suggested $10, cash-only donation. For more information, visit congressionalcemetery.org.
Golden Cinema at Farragut Square (912 17th St., N.W.) shows a mix of blockbusters and classics this summer with “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle” on July 20, “Casablanca” on July 27 and“Black Panther” on Aug. 3. All movies begin at sunset. Free admission. For details, visit goldentriangledc.com/golden-
Georgetown Sunset Cinema (1000 Potomac St., N.W.) presents its 2018 film series “Movies That Rock” featuring films that include a musical storyline. The lineup includes “Footloose” (July 24), “Dreamgirls” (July 31) and “Grease” (Aug. 7). Screenings begin at sunset (around 8:30-8:45 p.m.). Visit georgetowndc.com/sunset-cinema for more information.
Movies at Chinatown Park (5th and I Street N.W) presents Asian and Pacific Islander-themed films for free. “Life of Pi” screens on Aug. 15 and “Kung Fu Panda” screens on Sept. 21. The “Kung Fu Panda” screening will also include arts and crafts, family-friendly actives and snacks. All screenings will offer free popcorn and popsicles. For more information, search “Movies at Chinatown Park” on Eventbrite.
Library of Congress (101 Independence Ave, S.E.) hosts Summer Movies on the Lawn on the north lawn of the Library’s Thomas Jefferson Building through Aug. 16. “E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial” is July 26, “Back to the Future” screens on Aug. 2, “Superman” (1978) is Aug. 9 and “The Wizard of Oz” is Aug. 16. Films begin at sunset. Admission is free. For details, visit loc.gov.
NoMa Summer Screen presents films under the theme “Wonder Women,” focusing on movies with strong female leads. “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” is July 25. There will be free bags of popcorn while supplies last. “Pitch Perfect” is Aug. 1. Free popcorn while supplies last. “Moana” is Aug. 8. Children will receive free popsicles while supplies last. “Thelma & Louise” (Aug. 15), “Ghostbusters” (Aug. 22) and “Wonder Woman” (Aug. 29) will also screen. Food trucks will be on site for all film showings. For more information, visit nomabid.org.
Smithsonian American Art Museum (9th & G Streets N.W.) celebrates the 50th anniversary of director Stanley Kubrick’s “2001: A Space Odyssey” in the McEvoy Auditorium on July 21 at 3 p.m.Abraham Thomas, the Fleur and Charles Bresler curator-in-charge of the Renwick Gallery, will lead a discussion of the film’s design and impact on American culture. A screening of the movie will follow. No ticket required. The museum also screens director Martin Scorsese’s “Taxi Driver” in the McEvoy Auditorium on July 28 at 3 p.m. Dan Perri, the film’s title designer and artistic consultant, will host a post-film discussion on how he used the film’s design to send a message on the film’s larger themes. Admission is free and no ticket is required. Both films are part of the museum’s Movies at SAAM series. For more information, visit facebook.com/pg/americanart/
Union Market Drive-In (1309 5th St., N.E.) presents the Marvel blockbuster “Black Panther” on Aug. 3 from 8:45-11 p.m. The lot opens at 6 p.m. and closes at 8:15 p.m. On Sept 7, “The Lion King” screens from 8-9:30 p.m. The lot opens at 6 p.m. and closes at 7:30 p.m. There is a $10 parking fee per car. Walk-up customers are free. For more details, visit unionmarketdc.com.