Cinemas recently reopened, which is great news for movie lovers. And with blockbuster movie Tenet scheduled as the first major film release since the pandemic, we thought now was as good a time as any to review London's best picture houses in the capital.
From cosy big screens to massive multiplexes, we've put together a list of the best cinemas all around London. Whether you're watching an art-house flick or Vin Diesel jump out of a Nissan Skyline, which itself is falling out of a jumbo jet, these are the movie houses where you should watch your favourite films.
1) Everyman Hampstead
They always say that original equals best, and the Everyman's spiritual home is located in the northwest London neighbourhood of Hampstead. Leather armchairs, sofas and a waiter service add an element of luxury to this quaint and cosy original Everyman Cinema.
Address: 5 Holly Bush Vale, London NW3 6TX
2) BFI Southbank
Neatly nestled under Waterloo Bridge is where you will find BFI Southbank, a four-screen venue that's a big hit with movie-goers and just a hop and skip away from Bankside. It's also the flagship venue British Film Institute and the location for BFI's London Film Festival.
Address: Belvedere Rd, Bishop's, London SE1 8XT
3) The Phoenix Cinema
Head to The Phoenix Cinema in East Finchley for art deco delights and great movie experiences. The cinema is believed to be the oldest in London, first opening its doors in 1912. There's a real community vibe at The Phoenix, with local residents keeping it going over the years.
Address: 52 High Rd, East Finchley, London N2 9PJ
4) Empire Walthamstow
One of the larger cinemas on our list, the Empire has nine screens and seats more than 1,200 people. It's located in Walthamstow, one of London's latest hotspots, and forms part of the popular Empire brand.
Address: 267 High St, Walthamstow, London E17 7FD
5) Screen on the Green
Once a venue for up and coming music acts, the Screen on the Green has settled into an Everyman Cinema. There are footstools and cushions that make your movie experience even cosier. It's also located in Islington, which means you can grab a drink from one of the many vibrant bars after a screening.
Address: 83 Upper St, The Angel, London N1 0NP
6) Lexi Cinema
At first glance, you'd be forgiven for thinking you're looking at a house in Kensal Green. Look again, though, and you'll find yourself staring at The Lexi, one of London's most welcoming picture houses. It's mostly run by volunteers and acts as a staple of the community, with all profits from the cinema going to charity.
Address: 194b Chamberlayne Rd, Kensal Green, London NW10 3JU
7) Electric Cinema
Portobello Road is full of charm, and the Electric Cinema only adds to the character of Portobello and Notting Hill. It's one of London's oldest cinemas, has its own sweet factory and even provides bed-type settings where you can lay down and chill with a movie. There are also luxury leather armchairs, just in case you fancy sitting up during the screening.
Address: 191 Portobello Rd, Notting Hill, London W11 2ED
8) Curzon Mayfair
Make your cinema-going experience a fancy one with a trip to Mayfair, one of London's most affluent neighbourhoods. The Curzon in Mayfair was originally built in 1934 and is the very first from the popular cinema brand. There are two screens, one with 307 seats and a smaller, more intimate one that sits just 65 people.
Address: 38 Curzon St, Mayfair, London W1J 7TY
9) The Ritzy Brixton
Located in the heart of Brixton, the Ritzy Picturehouse encapsulates the charm and vibrancy of the south London neighbourhood. The cafe bar provides tasty treats to enjoy while watching a film, while the upstairs doubles up as a live events venue.
Address: Brixton Rd, Coldharbour Ln, Brixton, London SW2 1JG
10) Odeon Luxe Swiss Cottage
Odeon is one of the UK's most well-known cinema brands, and the venue at Swiss Cottage adds an element of Luxe to the proceedings. There are four luxury screens with reclining chairs, not to mention an IMAX screen where you can enjoy blockbuster movies at their best.
Address: 96 Finchley Rd, Swiss Cottage, London NW3 5EL
11) Greenwich Picturehouse
Whether you're after the big movie hits or art houses releases, Greenwich Picturehouse has you covered with its stylish cinema and comfy seats. After catching a movie, why not head into the neighbourhood of Greenwich and explore one of London's green areas?
Address: 180 Greenwich High Rd, Greenwich, London SE10 8NN
12) Rio Cinema
The neighbourhood of Dalston is known for being funky and fun, and the Rio Cinema is a picture house that's full of vibes. Set in a Grade II Listed building, the Rio is located on the bustling Kingsland High Street and provides a mix of art-house favourites and blockbuster movies.
Address: 107 Kingsland High St, Dalston, London E8 2PB
Whether you're watching an action flick, intense drama, comedy, love story or period piece, these cinemas are the best place to do it in London. Head to one of these movie houses and sit back and relax in comforting settings while you enjoy pure, unadulterated movie magic.