Atlanta’s Top 3 Independent Movie Theaters

Everyone goes to the movies and its usually an enjoyable, yet expensive, experience. A trip to the theater now means taking out a second mortgage on your home! If you’re going to spend that kind of money why not try something a little different for a change?
Here are 3 independently owned Metro Atlanta movie theaters that are worth a look!

The Plaza Theater in Atlanta is a great choice for an evening of movie watching! Opening in 1939, the Plaza has seen its share of changes. Becoming a burlesque theater in the seventies, it was re-invented in 1983 as Atlanta’s first independent theater and now has the unique distinction of being “Atlanta’s Oldest Continually Operating Cinema”. With that proclamation you might think its a stuffy old theater. WRONG! The Plaza has been redesigned and now has two screens. The larger auditorium has Heywood Wakefield Rockers seating 375 while the balcony is a more intimate setting with fixed seating for 175. There are several original pieces to be found inside the theater. Just look around at the magnificent wall sconces and crystal chandeliers. While marveling at the old, you’ll be surprised at the lovingly updated ticket booth and concession stand. You’ll be amazed at the digital film and sound projection. The Plaza Theater shows movies from every genre including current releases. You would think their prices would be exorbitant. They aren’t. Ticket prices are extremely reasonable. All movies before 6pm are $7.50, after 6pm prices are $9.00 for adults, $7.50 for seniors and students (M.-Th. only with valid ID). There is a $1.00 DISCOUNT per ticket when paying in cash!
Special events are priced individually. Located at 1049 Ponce de Leon Ave. Atlanta, 30306.
Contact info. 404-873-1939 or www.plazaatlanta.com.

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Unless you were born before the 80’s you’ve probably never been to a Drive-In Theater. Well the Starlight Six Drive-In Theater can solve that problem! Starlight opened in 1949 and is as much a part of Atlanta’s history as The Varsity. This theater works dilligently to make your entire experience a joy. It is a great alternative to those homogenized multi-plexes that can take up a city block. This is a real Drive-In, so make sure your radio is in working order. Starlight is open every evening, rain or shine. No refunds. They have classic movie festivals and also offer first run movies. This place has so much going on you must check the website before you head out. In October they have Drive Invasion which is not to be missed. They refer to it as “The Great Parking Lot Party Boot Camp”. You have to see it for yourself! Prepare to bring CASH though because Starlight does NOT accept debit or credit cards, an ATM is available on sight. Tickets are $7.00 per person, $1.00 for ages 3-9. That price gets you a double feature – Two movies for the price of one! Starlight advises you to arrive early on Fri. and Sat. nights to get the prime parking spots. The theater gates open M.-Th.at 8pm, Fri. and Sat. at 7pm, and Sun. at 8pm. Unlike other theaters, Starlight encourages you to bring your own cooler and have a picnic. They don’t even mind if you grill out before the movie! Please no glass bottles, bare feet or pets. If the weather is nice enough, feel free to bring a lawn chair and “camp” out in front of your car.
Be sure to visit their Flea Market open 7am – 3pm every Sat. and Sun. except Labor Day weekend. Admission to the Flea Market is $0.25 per person, vendors $15 per space. Call 404-627-5783 #2 for more info on the Flea Market. Starlight Six Drive-In is located at 2000 Moreland Ave. Atlanta, 30316. www. starlightdrivein.com.

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The Lefont Theater is a true neighborhood cinema making it one of my faves. Intimate, warm and inviting. The theater opened in 1976 and is a movie-goers delight. Lefont shows blockbusters, international and indie films. The ticket prices are similar to that of the Multi-Plexes but this theater has more charm, comfortable seating with plenty of leg room and cheaper concessions. In addition to your traditional concession treats, Lefont also offers wine and beer. The staff is made up of fellow movie buffs who are as charming as the theater itself. I have never had a bad experience here. If you are lucky enough to visit them, make a pit stop at the bathroom! That’s right. This theater is so charming they even have cute movie quotes in the bathroom! Ticket prices are $9.25 for adults, $7.50 for seniors and children. Located on Sandy Springs Circle N.E., Sandy Springs, 30358 www.lefonttheaters.com.