The Best Movie Theaters in Chicago

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There are many movie theaters to suit the varying tastes of audiences in Chicago. There are the old school and classic theaters showcasing art-house and independent flicks. There are new multiplexes featuring digital cinemas and 3D blockbusters. It’s all about the diversity. The location where you watch the movie matters in the wholeness of your cinema experience. And trying out the best ones in the city is always something to look forward to.

Landmark’s Century Centre Cinema (2828 N. Clark St.)

Featuring seven auditoriums with unobstructed views and wall-to-wall screens, the Landmark’s Century Centre Cinema boasts of a state-of-the-art and architecturally unique facility to provide the best movie experience to the audience. It has provided the first all-stadium seating theater showcasing independent and foreign language films in the Chicago area. It is one of the city’s most innovative and exciting new theatre locations providing venues with unobstructed sightlines and top caliber sound technology. Aptly situated into the fourth, fifth and sixth levels of the Century Shopping Centre, it is surrounded by award-winning restaurants and deluxe shopping opportunities. The Landmark’s Century Centre Cinema offers theater rentals for private screenings. From digital camera from the good old years to the 8mm movies now transferred into DVDs, it provides people with a suitable place to relive those cherished memories with family and friends in a full theater atmosphere. A luxury birthday gift to game aficionados can be the experience of playing games on the big screen.

The theater can provide a cool place for gamers who want a larger than life encounter with their favorite games by hooking up the game system with the digital projectors and surround sound system. And for a romantic treat, the theater can also provide a perfect setting for a classic date—whether you reserve the theater to yourselves or invite friends along. More than just a pleasant movie experience for colleagues, clients and employees, business meetings are also welcome in the theater. It is equipped with full screen digital projection capabilities where powerpoint presentations can be utilized for big screen viewing. The theater can also provide a range of audio-visual choices to suit the company event including easels, wireless microphones and podiums for a plush and meaningful business affair. Catering services can also complement the event. Independent filmmakers can also rent a theater showcase films to the cast, crew, friends, producers and prospective distributors. It also offers Academy Award Qualifying Rentals where the indie artists can show their films in their quest to achieve world-renowned recognition.

Navy Pier IMAX Theatre (600 E. Grand Ave.)

Navy Pier has been a top amusement destination in Chicago for more than a decade. It is a place where locals and tourists alike come together to enjoy the beauty  of Lake Michigan and Navy Pier’s fun amenities. One of its top entertainment spot is the larger-than-life cinema at The IMAX Theatre. It offers a 440-seat theater featuring Chicago’s largest flat movie screen with a soaring six-storey, 60 x 80-foot screen, the largest in the city, designed to enhance both 2D and 3D films. Undoubtedly one of the Pier’s biggest attractions, it offers unparalleled image and sound quality for both the newest and hottest blockbuster 3D movies and also classics like a Stanley Kubrick or Steven Spielberg masterpiece. Navy Pier also features spectacular fireworks displays to seasonal special events, so it’s a good time to go there for a whole day bonding affair with family and friends.

There are a number of Navy Pier Fun Packages with value deals for all your preferred attractions that may include the Navy Pier AeroBalloon, The Chicago Childrens Museum, Cruises, The Navy Pier Store, and of course, The IMAX Theatre. You can also enjoy theatrical productions courtesy of the Chicago Shakespeare Theater, the Cirque Shanghai acrobats at the Pepsi Skyline Stage and hundreds of free shows, concerts and special events for all ages.

AMC’s Ford City 14 Theaters (7601 S. Cicero Ave.) The Ford City 14 Theaters has a pretty interesting history. It’s originally known as the Ford City initially operated by General Cinema. During that time, it was utilized as two different theaters, the six-screen Ford City and the triplex Ford City East nestled in the Ford City Mall in the southwest side of Chicago. In 1990, the theater has become known as Ford City 14 Theaters. It’s one of the largest megaplex theaters during its heyday. And given its market value, the famous movie theater chain AMC found interest to it and took over the theater until today. It is very accessible with various transportation options and it has nearby food and entertainment establishments to maximize a patron’s film day.

Just like with most AMC movie theaters, the Ford City 14 boasts of top quality audio-visual equipment and services. From theaters with standard 35mm projection to digital cinema theaters, it provides the viewers with luxury comfort with its design and features. It houses its own IMAX Theatre with towering screens for visually stunning images and technologically advanced surround system for that ultimate 3D movie-going experience. It also features the RealD 3D experience with its mind-blowing digital approach to see the movies with amazing depth and clarity. It provides a number of theatrical services to its patrons including theater rentals for private and business functions, cinema suites, premium theaters, alternative content, gift and cards merchandise and a rewards system to bring more perks for the loyal movie-goers.

Musicbox Theatre (3733 N. Southport Ave.)

With an eclectic melange of artistic fantasy and Italian and Spanish architecture, the Musicbox Theatre has decades of history of providing both the locals and tourists a taste of art and independent films. From Fritz Lang to Federico Fellini to Akira Kurosawa, the theater’s Weekend Matinees with classic films has become a part of the sub-culture of movie-going through this downtown theater. It is also known for its Midnight Movies where two films typically play during midnight weekends. Known for its large theater space operated full time in the city, the Music Box Theatre creates a true culture of its own with its physical trademark of having an atmospheric ambience. It has dark blue, cove-lit ceiling with twinkling stars and moving cloud formations suggesting the night sky. The side walls have plaster ornaments, along with round towers, laid-back marbles parts and organ chambers providing the feel of an Italian courtyard. And the overall design makes the movie patrons have the feel of actually watching a film in an open air palazzo with a beautiful night sky enveloping their movie experience.

For around 20 years, this vintage theater has become a top premiere Chicago venue for independent, art-house and foreign films. Independently owned and operated by the Southport Music Box Corporation (SBMC), it has its own Music Box Films division which also distributes foreign and independent films in the theatrical, DVD and television markets throughout the US. The theater is easily accessible from the CTA (Chicago Transit Authority) Train’s Red Line and Brown Line and also from the CTA Bus.

Davis Theater (4614 N. Lincoln Ave.)

The Davis Theater situated in the heart of Lincoln Square has been a local favorite for over 80 years of serving the hottest Hollywood movies. What’s good about this theater is that it has kept a good pace in showing first-run blockbusters and also first-rate indie films at amenable prices. It further exudes a culture of its own. In Chicago, it has been described as “your neighborhood movie theater” with its excellent customer relationship that has definitely grown with the times. It has a charming and cozy ambience without losing its old school character. The lobby is filled with old movie posters and candy vending machines. Another thing that makes film enthusiasts come back to this classic theater is its excellent value, especially for matinee runs. Most films shown tend to hang around a little longer in Davis than in corporate multiplexes.

The Theater 4, better known as the Davis Art, occasionally showcases art-house movies and indie flicks. It also organizes some special weekend programs for midnight films. Davis Theater has lived with the Chicago film patrons for most of their lives. It is a walk away from various restaurants, schools, book stores, art centers, business establishments and major transportation options.


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