London is one of the most vibrant and exciting cities on the planet and one of the great attractions of the English capital is its love of film and the rich cinematographic history that can be found there.
Some of the biggest global blockbusters have been filmed and are set in the city of London, meaning visitors from across the globe are sure to have already seen many of the sights that have been captured on the silver screen down the years during their stay.
From rom coms like Notting Hill to the latest outing of British super spy James Bond in Spectre, movies to suit every taste have been shot here and continue to be every day.
A truly cosmopolitan city, visitors from every corner of the globe will find something to enjoy when exploring the rich history of film that London has to offer.
London’s vibrant film history
Visitors hoping to find out more about the London movie scene and its interesting past can do just that by planning a visit to the London Cinema Museum.
The collection at the museum includes extensive archives from a range of historians, academics and journalists, while also providing exhibitions based on the experience of London cinema-goers from years gone by.
Address: The Master’s House, 2 Dugard Way (off Renfrew Road), London SE11 4TH
Opening times are throughout the day and can vary based upon the time of year. It is therefore essential that anyone hoping to check out the vast collection of cinema mementos and collections at the museum pre-book their places on the daily tours.
Admission is £10 for adults and £7 for children and concessions.
Great places to catch the latest releases
Anyone hoping to enjoy the latest Hollywood blockbusters can do so with ease at the capital’s many mainstream cinemas, with sites dotted around Greater London to fulfil the appetite of the movie-going public.
Here are the addresses of some of the most popular theatres for London visitors to enjoy:
- Odeon Cinema Swiss Cottage: 96 Finchley Road, London NW3 5EL
- Vue Islington: Central Shopping Mall, Angel Central, 36 Parkfield Street, London N1 0PS
- Vue Mutiplex: 3 Cranbourn Street, Leicester Square, London WC2H 7AL
- Odeon Cinema – The Lounge: Whiteleys, Whiteleys Shopping Centre, Queensway, London W2 4YL
- Odeon Cinema Putney: 26 Putney High Street, London SW15 1SN
- Vue North Finchley: Great North Leisure Park, Chaplin Square, London N12 0GL
- Odeon London Marble Arch: 10 Edgware Road, London W2 2EN
- Odeon Cinema Surrey Quays: Surrey Quays Leisure Park, Redriff Road, London SE16 7LL
Visitors hoping to find the latest screening times, information on facilities, ticket costs and details of what’s on at each of the venues can do so by heading to the respective cinema website.
Avant-garde cinema at its finest
If more arthouse and avant-garde movie screenings are your style, then London also offers a wealth of exemplary cinemas to fulfil this role, with the acclaimed Curzon group among the very best that London has to offer.
Each of the group’s cinemas is dedicated to a particular aspect of the film experience, so guests should do their homework before heading along. Here is a short breakdown of what visitors can expect:
Curzon Soho – One of London’s oldest cinema venues, Curzon Soho can trace its heritage back to 1912 and today offers three screens showing the best in arthouse cinema. With regular directorial Q&As a range of other special events, it is a great place to go to find out about the cinematographic process and catch a glimpse behind the scenes of the silver screen.
Curzon Bloomsbury – With five screens dedicated to the best that world cinema has to offer, this is one venue that is perfect for cinema lovers with a sense of adventure. Also home to Bertha DocHouse, this is the UK’s first centre dedicated solely to the art of documentary-making.
Curzon Victoria – The newest addition to the Curzon family, the Victoria venue offers a Sony 4K cinema experience and 3D projection capabilities. It is a great place to visit for all the family and offers a unique mix of film and cultural events.
Curzon Mayfair – The venue’s palatial Screen One is among the grandest locations in the whole of London for film screenings, with the venue having been open to the public since 1934. It offers a rich history for film lovers to explore during their time in the city.
Curzon Chelsea – Open for more than 75 years, Curzon Chelsea boasts London’s largest cinema screen outside of the West End and sees the best in arthouse cinema rubbing shoulders with some of the most acclaimed independent releases of today and yesteryear.
Curzon Richmond – Just a short walk from the picturesque banks of the River thames, cinema lovers hoping for a more idyllic getaway outside the hustle and bustle of central London might like to visit the calming atmosphere of Curzon Richmond, where a relaxed cinema experience is the top priority for everyone.
Full listings of all showings – ticket costs, what’s on and when – can be found by heading to the official Curzon Cinemas website.
Independent cinemas for London guests
And finally, when it comes to those smaller, more intimate venues that are perfect for couples and visitors hoping for a more unique cinema experience, London also offers a wealth of great places to try out, including:
Phoenix Cinema Finchley – A beautifully-crafted and well maintained theatre dating from 1910, the Phoenix Cinema Finchley has a unique charm and in addition to showing the latest films, it also host live opera and dramatic performances. A lively cafe and bar can also be found upstairs, making this a perfect place to unwind and enjoy the capital’s culture.
BFI Southbank – An unmissable attraction in the heart of London’s south bank area, the British Film Institute’s standout London venue hosts such standards of the city’s cultural scene as the annual BFI London Film Festival. It also offers a wealth of information on the history of London and UK cinema.
Electric Cinema Notting Hill – With plush red leather seats and having recently undergone a £2 million makeover, the Electric Cinema is one of the most luxurious venues in the whole of London to catch the latest films. Visitors can also enjoy a great bite to eat at the luxury on-site restaurant and bar.
Greenwich Picturehouse – A relatively small venue for cinema lovers to enjoy, what this attractions loses in size is more than made up for in intimacy and affordability. Focused on family-friendly entertainment, it is located in close proximity to other attractions including the Royal Greenwich Observatory and the Cutty Sark.
Everyman Baker Street – Another modest but intimate venue, Everyman Baker Street is perfect for families with young children. It also offers a yoghurt bar for healthy snacks and an upstairs area to relax and unwind.
Rio Cinema – An old-fashioned cinema from the 1920s, this art deco attraction offers outstanding film screenings from around the world, as well as the latest Hollywood releases. It also offers classic matinee performances, meaning screenings can be arranged for the best time to suit all guests.
Cinema-goers are therefore spoilt for choice when it comes to finding a perfect place to catch the films that they love during their time in the English capita. Everything from new Box Office hits from the US to little-known pieces coming out of Europe can all be found here. There really is something for everyone in London’s vibrant cinema scene. All of London’s independent cinemas are supported by fantastic transport links, making them easily accessible from the Grand Royale London Hyde Park hotel.