1711 N Charles St
Baltimore, Md. 21201
The home of the Maryland Film Festival, The Charles is truly the best independent movie theater in Baltimore. Located in the city’s art district, The Charles offers an array of indie films. Some have unknown actors and directors though others boast big names, from Brad Pitt in “The Tree of Life” to Emily Blunt in “Your Sister’s Sister.” The theater’s yearly Cinema Sundays series encourages discussion along with a Q&A session and a tasty breakfast, while the Revival series brings older films like “The Royal Tenenbaums” and Charlie Chaplin’s “The Circus” back to the big screen. When catching a flick at the Charles, stop by Tapas Teatro, which is connected to the theater’s lobby, or the popular Sofi’s Crepes right next door.
20145 Leitersburg Pike
Hagerstown, Md. 21742
The dust has settled as recent renovations to the Leitersburg Cinemas provide a clean atmosphere, comfort and entertainment while maintaining affordability to you. This locally-owned theater brings popular films to its audience but remains firmly rooted in the community through fundraisers. The Leitersburg keeps things interesting with Retro Nights in addition to a selection of free movie showings. Book an early reservation for dinner and a movie where you will receive true VIP treatment from friendly staff in a relaxing recliner for only $20 to $30.
West End Cinema
2301 M St NW
Washington, D.C. 20037
Like the Charles, this art-house theater specializes in bringing international and indie films to wider audiences in order to “offer new intellectual and cultural perspectives.” The West End Cinema has shown the all-Spanish-speaking Will Ferrell comedy, “Casa de mi Padre,” “Coriolanus” starring Ralph Fiennes and Gerard Butler and “Once Upon a Time in Anatolia.” Join the Film Lover’s club to get discounts on tickets and concessions, advanced notice of special events and screenings and a subscription to The Film Society of Lincoln Center’s magazine, Film Comment. While you’re there, enjoy D.C.’s best popcorn with a drink from the fully-stocked bar and even some unconventional treats.
3417 Eastern Blvd
Baltimore, Md. 21220
As drive-in theaters are few and far between, there is nothing quite like going to Bengies (now in its 57th year) to experience the time-honored tradition in an atmosphere evoking the 1950s. Where else can you take the family to see two or three newly-released films on the biggest screen in the U.S. for an amazingly affordable price? Be forewarned, Bengies runs a tight ship at this local drive-in, so it is best to review its common sense House Rules before attending (i.e. no recording films, watch your children, don’t speed, etc.) And though cash is necessary at the box office, credit cards are accepted at the snack bar which offers everything from popcorn and candy to pizza and shrimp rolls.
Related: Baltimore’s Best Drive-In Theaters
Montgomery Royal Theater
11006 Veirs Mill Road
Silver Spring, Md. 20902
Just north of the Washington Beltway lies the quaint Montgomery Royal theater in the Kensington-Wheaton area. Watch new films at prices that are very affordable, considering the expensive D.C. area. Large seats offer plenty of leg room and a polite staff makes the experience worthwhile. Better yet, sign up for the Newsletter club for a free popcorn.