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Boston Area’s Best Indie Movie Theaters

April 28, 2014 6:00 AM

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Photo credit: Facebook/Coolidge Corner Theatre

Photo credit: Facebook/Coolidge Corner Theatre

The indie movie theaters of Boston have strong followings not just because their lineups are not all current blockbusters, but also because many of them have a style difficult to find in mainstream cinemas. Some have great concessions, some have amazing movie selections and others have all that and more. Therefore, whether viewers choose to go indie for the films or for the experience, Boston has a theater for them. The best part is that they are typically going to pay less than it costs to hit a national theater chain.

Photo credit: Facebook/Harvard Film Archive

Photo credit: Facebook/Harvard Film Archive

Harvard Film Archive

24 Quincy St.
Cambridge, MA 02138
(617) 495-4700
www.hcl.harvard.edu

When it comes to selection of little-known or classic films, no area theater is better than the Harvard Film Archive. Showings are less regular than most theaters. However, there are still several shows at the Carpenter Center from which to choose every week. The films shown are part of a large collection, which itself is part of the Harvard Library System. They include pieces from the beginning of film history until the modern era of film and from virtually every genre.

Related: Beyond The Megaplex: Boston’s Best Movie Theaters

Photo credit: Facebook/Coolidge Corner Theatre

Photo credit: Facebook/Coolidge Corner Theatre

Coolidge Corner Theatre
290 Harvard St.
Brookline, MA 02446
(617) 734-2501
www.coolidge.org

War films, cartoons, comedies, black comedies — they are all at the Coolidge Corner Theatre. This theater also has showings throughout the day, nearly every day, save select holidays. There are several theaters and viewing rooms inside of Coolidge, so the experience ranges from intimate to grand. What’s more, people can rent these theaters for events and parties. Expect to see new independent films, second runs and current films on the Coolidge Corner Theatre’s showtime calendar.

Photo credit: Facebook/Brattle Theatre

Photo credit: Facebook/Brattle Theatre

The Brattle Theatre
40 Brattle St.
Cambridge, MA 02138
(617) 876-6837
www.brattlefilm.org

The Brattle Theatre shows independent, foreign, classic and current films. Like Coolidge, it has a full schedule of showings so fans can go to the movies on a whim. Movie experience aficionados will appreciate the popcorn this theater serves, which is made with real butter and salt. There is also a wide selection of candy, baked goods and drinks, including beer and wine. The theater is housed in the 19th century brick Brattle Hall.

Photo credit: Facebook/Capitol Theatre

Photo credit: Facebook/Capitol Theatre

Capitol Theatre

204 Massachusetts Ave.
Arlington, MA 02474
(781) 648-4340
www.somervilletheatreonline.com

The Capitol Theatre is an independent theater, but it runs just a few of the most current films, usually the best out at any given time. It is a quaint, turn-of-the-century theater that is part of the Somerville Theatre chain. Just around the corner from the theater is the Capitol Creamery, an ice cream parlor that also serves lattes and the like. It opens just before the theater and closes just after, so it is a perfect treat to combine with a family movie or date night. Kids love the creamery’s model train and pet fish.

Related: Boston Area Movie Theaters With More

Photo credit: Facebook/Kendall Square Cinema

Photo credit: Facebook/Kendall Square Cinema

The Kendall Square Cinema
1 Kendall Square
Cambridge, MA 02139
(617) 621-1202
www.landmarktheatres.com

The Kendall Square Cinema is consistently one of the top independent movie theaters in the city. This is at least partly thanks to its commitment to playing both big hits and indie films. It does not matter if viewers want romance, drama, horror or even animation because this Landmark Theater location will show it. Kendall Square’s popularity may also be simply because it is a quaint retro theater that has an indie feel about it.

Shelly Barclay is a professional freelance writer and amateur author. She writes on a variety of topics from food to mysteries. She loves to share the culture and rich history of her birthplace and home, Boston, with the rest of the world. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.

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