Free outdoor movies in Toronto summer 2014
Outdoor movies in Toronto are a cinephile's dream come true. They provide a chance to continue enjoying the heat once the sun goes down, they happen throughout the city, and they are free. The specifics for some of this year's movie nights have yet to be announced, but fret not. They're still happening (we've confirmed), and you can check back with the various organizers for updates as the summer goes on.
Grab a few friends or a love interest, pack your own snacks, and check out the diverse and entertaining flicks on offer this summer in Toronto:
Free Flicks: Harbourfront
Location: Lower Simcoe St & Queens Quay, Harbourfront Centre
While the specific lineup of films has not yet been released, Harbourfront Centre will feature its Free Flicks series again this year, each Wednesday evening at sundown. This year, the theme is Funny Girls. Films honouring women comedians, whether they be writers, directors and actors. The series begins July 2 and runs until August 27.
TIFF in the Park
Location: King & Simcoe, David Pecaut Square
Films showcased by TIFF in the Park are, fittingly, all about life in show business and the pursuit of a big break. The dates and films are:
- July 2:Waiting for Guffman
- July 9: 20 Feet from Stardom
- July 16: Billy Elliot
- July 23: Searching for Sugar Man
- July 30: Sunset Boulevard
- August 6: Pina
- August 13: A Star Is Born
- August 20: Who Framed Roger Rabbit?
- August 27: Pitch Perfect
Many of these cheesy flicks are family friendly, and some might give you a jolt of ambition, if that's what you're looking for. TIFF will be announcing pop-up films at Dentonia Park, Evergreen Brickworks and Regent Park, with dates and films TBA soon.
Somehow the folks at Yonge-Dundas Square are still working on the schedule for outdoor movies this year, this despite the fact that they're scheduled to start on June 24th. In spite of the light pollution, this is always one of the most popular spots to catch an outdoor flick. Just remember to bring a chair! Look for cult classics rather than new releases here.
Courtyard Movies at St. Peter's
Location: St. Peter's Church, 840 Bathurst St
Courtyard movies at St. Peter's kick off on June 13 at 8:30 p.m. with The Princess Bride. and they continue on select days throughout the summer. Specifics are TBA, but you can check back on their site for updates.
Location: Mel Lastman Square
Each Friday in July, Cultura Festival takes over the square, and films are shown alongside the opportunity to pick up some local art and sample international street foods. The films for this year have yet to be announced, but the dates are as follows:
- Friday, July 4
- Friday, July 11
- Friday, July 18
- Friday, July 15
The Regent Park Film Festival hosts an eclectic mix of movies this summer outside of the Daniels Spectrum.
- June 18: Omar, co-presented with Toronto International Film Festival
- June 25: Empire of Dirt, co-presented with imagineNative Media + Arts Festival
- July 2: Kidnapped for Christ, co-presented with Inside Out Film Festival
- July 9: Linsanity, co-presented with Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival
- July 16: Blood Brother, co-presented with Open Roof Fest and Toronto Youth Shorts
- July 23: The Lunchbox, co-presented with Diaspora Film Festival
- July 30: Luv, co-presented with CityLife Film Project
- August 6: Short Term 12, co-presented with Rendezvous With Madness Film Festival
- August 13: Mooz-Lum, co-presented with ReelWorld Film Festival
- August 20: Made in America, co-presented with Manifesto
Christie Pits Film Festival: Hits in the Pits
Location: Christie Pits Park
- July 6 at sunset: A League Of Their Own
- July 13 at sunset: Les Vacances De Monsieur Hulot
- July 20 at sunset: Stand By Me
- July 27 at sunset: Rear Window
Stand By Me in the park covertly sipping beer from a can and snuggling with friends beneath the few stars that show themselves beyond the smog? Just show me a truer delight. Christie Pits is one of the city's more charming parks, and it's surrounded by wonderful Korean joints and a few bars for post-flick hangouts. There are a few more to be added to the list, so be sure to check back in as the summer goes on.
Movies in the Park - Riverdale Park East
Location: 550 Broadview Ave
This year's Movies in the Park have not yet been announced, but they are definitely happening. Check back to their site for updates, but in the meantime, their dates are as follows:
- Sunday July 13
- Sunday July 27
- Sunday August 3
- Sunday August 17
Junction Movie Nights
Location: The Junction Train Platform (Dundas St. West / Pacific Ave.)
Dates and films for Junction movie nights are yet to be announced. According to the Junction BIA, there might be films once per month this year, but those will be organized by another group, not the BIA itself. The facilitating organization, like the films themselves, is TBA. Check in at the Junction BIA's site, though, as they aid they'd provide updates.
Sail-in Cinema / Films TBD
Location: Sugar Beach (25 Dockside Drive)
Sail-in Cinema is a shout out to the nautical aspect of Toronto's identity. Apparently "Toronto's largest outdoor theatre event," the mini film fest broadcasts movies on a two-sided screen mounted atop a giant barge in the harbour. The audience can watch from Sugar Beach, or, obviously, from their boats, should they be so lucky. Voting begins soon to determine which films will be shown. Sail-in Cinema is happening on August 14 to 16 this year.
Movies in St. James Park
Location: St. James Park
On the final Thursday of each summer month, you can catch a (generally) family-friendly film in St. James Park. What was the location again? I know...Anyway, here's what's been announced so far this year:
- June 26: The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert + free drag show
- July 21: The Lego Movie
- August 28: TBD
The rest is TBD, but it will be posted online once available.
Open Roof Festival
Location: 99 Sudbury
Although not free, it's worth mentioning the Open Roof Festival. Back for its fifth year, the series showcases indie bands and outdoor screenings. Thanks to its new location this year, the festival is touting its food and drink options, which distinguish it from most outdoor movie nights. Tickets are $15.
- June 19: Enemy
- June 25: The Grand Budapest Hotel
- July 3: Bad Words
- July 10: Locke
- July 17: Frank
- July 24: Ping Pong Summer
- July 31: 20 Feet from Stardom
- August 7: The Grand Seduction
Thanks to Pure Leaf for sponsoring our summer adventures. For more things to do this summer, check out our Best of Summer page.