Summer in Toronto means many things: Patios, brunch, Sunday Fundays, the Beach, the Island, summer dresses and shoes, day drinking, park hangs, music festivals.
Another favourite Toronto summer pastime is watching movies outside.
Yes, we will take any and every excuse to be outside as much as possible during these brief warm months – and after the winter we’ve had, we’ve certainly earned it.
Here’s our list of the best places to get your movie on in the city this summer.
OPEN ROOF FESTIVAL
If you prefer a movie environment that allows you to buy booze and gourmet food, Open Roof Festival is your best option. This year’s Wednesday night screenings start June 17th and include Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck, The Overnight, Ex Machina, The Sandwich Nazi, It Follows, Pretend We’re Kissing, Guidance, While We’re Young, Unexpected, and Diamond Tongues. The best part: bands play ahead of every screening. Movies, music, booze and food – the best parts of Toronto all in one place.
FREE FLICKS AT HARBOURFRONT
The Harbourfront will resume its free movies by the lake every Wednesday, all summer long. Confirmed flicks include Raising Arizona, Win Win, Young Frankenstein, Stories We Tell, Boy, The Descendants, The Darjeeling Limited, and True Grit.
TIFF IN THE PARK
Head to David Pecaut Square every Wednesday starting July 8th for TIFF In The Park, where you can see critically-acclaimed films like Strictly Ballroom, Whale Rider, Annie Hall, Watermark, The King’s Speech, Dial M For Murder, The Artist, The Triplets of Belleville, and Pride and Prejudice.
TIFF IN YOUR PARK
TIFF heard the suburbs’ request for wider accessibility and created TIFF In Your Park to bring some of the hottest flicks beyond the borders of downtown. Various parks across the GTA will host a free movie night all summer long, including Fly Away Home, Khumba, Hugo, Breakup Buddies, Song of the Sea, The Good Lie, Beyond The Lights, Hotel Transylvania, Ghostbusters, Pleasantville and more.
Attention, boat-loving Torontonians: from August 20th to 22nd, you can literally sail to Sugar Beach, plunk your anchor into the water, and watch movies from the luxury of your boat. Screenings haven’t been revealed yet, but the event has become something to look forward to every summer. And if you don’t have a boat, no worries. The event has two screens; one faces the lake, one faces the beach. Bring your blanket to Sugar Beach to get in on the fun.
CHRISTIE PITS FILM FESTIVAL
Christie Pits brings back its annual free summer film festival for the fifth year this summer, this time focusing on great villains. Nosferatu is confirmed to open the event on July 5th at sundown.
CITY CINEMA AT YONGE-DUNDAS SQUARE
Yonge-Dundas brings back its free Tuesday night sundown event with confirmed screenings so far including 8 Mile, The Hunger, A Star Is Born, and Be Kind Rewind.
MOVIES IN THE PARK
For those on the east end, Riverdale Park East will return with its free Saturday screenings in July and August in support of local charities. The film lineup hasn’t been released yet, but it all begins at sundown on July 11th.