“Movies With A View” is back!
The free film series at Brooklyn Bridge Park returns for its 22nd season July 7 with a lineup transporting viewers all over the world.
“We are literally going around the world with all these movies so there is definitely something for everybody,” said Eveline Chang-Fritsch, Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy’s director of public programs. “It should kind of inspire everyone for that trip they have all been longing for, for so long.”
Movies With A View at Brooklyn Bridge Park’s Pier 1 Harbor View Lawn is the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy’s most popular program, entertaining 650,000 viewers since its start.
The movie festival predates the Conservancy, Chang-Frisch said, and its first rendition had viewers jumping a fence for a guerrilla movie night while advocating for the construction of the park, where, at the time, people just threw their trash.
Since then, she said, the outdoor film fest has become the space’s flagship event.
“The first one was I guess 22 years ago where people just scaled the chain-link fence, set up some folding chairs and then showed on the waterfront to about 300 people,” Chang-Fritsch said. “Well, that was a critical part of the community rooted movement of getting Brooklyn Bridge Park built.”
The summer program feature a total of eight movies screened every Thursday from July 7 to Aug. 25. The films are selected by the Brooklyn Academy of Music and are focused around the theme “Away We Go.”
“We want to just celebrate coming back together, also maybe the journey, the travel, or vacation that we had delayed. Maybe we still can’t and we want to go on our trip in our mind,” Chang-Fritsch said. “Let’s take that breather, let’s celebrate and let’s bring together a wide variety of backgrounds that are doing these journeys.”
The season kicks off with “Before Sunrise,” a movie set in Vienna, Austria over a single night from the eyes of an American student studying abroad, followed by other films with characters trouncing around Europe, Singapore, Jamaica and some of the islands of Hawaii, among other scenic destinations.
Moviegoers will get to choose which film they want to see for the last showing of the series on August 25, with polls opening in early August to vote for either “Mamma Mia,” “Back to the Future” or “Mission Impossible.”
Chang-Fritsch said they open the last show to vote as it is a fun way for the community to participate in the film festivals and sometimes the competition has gotten pretty heated, she added.
“There have been some very heated votes in the past, some that have even gotten media attention,” she said. “So we were really excited to bring this back, because that really gets the public involved and very excited.”
The lawn opens at 6 p.m. with the movie starting at 7 p.m., and the series will feature the following films:
- “Before Sunrise” on July 7
- “The Bourne Identity” on July 14
- “Crazy Rich Asians” on July 21
- “How Stella Got Her Groove Back” on July 28
- “Jurassic Park” on Aug. 4
- “Thelma and Louise” on Aug. 11
- “The Mitchells vs. the Machines” on Aug.18
- Viewer’s choice (TBD) on Aug. 25
Movies aren’t the only attraction at the eight showings — cinephiles can also enjoy a selection of food and drink from vendors selected by Smorgasburg, a DJ courtesy of Brooklyn Radio and short films by local filmmakers, which will be shown before each feature.
“We’ve been able to add all these other great elements through the years, including DJs, now Smorgasburg,” said Chang-Fritsch. “So now it’s this comprehensive night out.”
The mini Smorgasburg will now open two hours before the start of the movie along the Pier 1 Promenade this season, as opposed to an hour before prior, with visitors invited to just come for food and not have to stay for the movie too.
“We really want folks to take advantage of that, even as its own standalone operation,” Chang-Fritsch said. “You want to just come down and grab dinner, people are very, very welcome.”
This year is the first full series since before the pandemic. Last year, the organization hosted four nights of shows, and ran online trivia in place of the program in 2020.
Attendees are encouraged to bring blankets to the showings, but dogs and lawn chairs are not permitted.
Transportation Alternatives is providing free bike parking at the Pier 1 Turnaround Lot off Furman Street.