With summer slowly approaching and the evenings getting longer, it seems like the perfect opportunity to delve into Argentina’s famous Ciclos de Cine, or themed film series. Although this isn’t a tradition that happens exclusively in summer, the warm weather (and the reduced chance of getting drenched on your journey there) makes it a little bit more appealing to leave the house, head up to a rooftop bar, and immerse yourself in some silver screen magic.
These events attract a huge range of people and personalities, and luckily for us, Buenos Aires caters to them all. Based on a wide variety of cinematic themes, from gay rights and the LGBTQ+ community to cultural identities and American history, every location offers a different and unique experience – in fact, the quirkier the better. Not only is it a good excuse to get together with friends, grab a bite to eat, and hunker down to with good movie, but it’s also really cheap and becoming more and more popular all over town.
With films screening in perennial powerhouses such as MALBA and El Cultural San Martín already in everyone’s radar, here at The Bubble we have gathered our favorite picks for film series from other places, in search of alternatives that offer something a little more personal and unique.
Congo Garden Films: For the Contemporary Soul
Located at the Congo Cultural Club in Palermo Soho, famously buzzing with live jazz music, guest speakers, jam sessions, and an abundance of flowing drinks, it is the perfect setting for those looking to enjoy the atmosphere of a lively bar without having to wake up the next day with a heavy hangover.
Set in the jungle-like garden at the back of the space, it is the ideal location for cinephiles to escape the city life for a couple of hours and enjoy the fresh food and selection of wine and beers that are on offer while soaking up one of their weekly film picks.
Every Wednesday from 7:30 PM, upcoming screenings include a few popular classics such as A Clockwork Orange, Grease, Halloween and Labyrinth, all cult favorites that you’ve already watched a million times for sure, but have you really seem them in a public setting? Didn’t think so. (Also, four words for you: David Bowie in leggings.)
Quick tip: during the Grease screening, singing along with John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John is not only allowed but encouraged. Gelled back hair and leather pants are also welcome.
Congo Centro Cultural – Honduras 5329 – Tickets
Crepas Cinema Club: For the Light-Hearted Foodie
With a similar vibe to Congo, Crepas Cinema Club is also located in Palermo Soho, but rather than hiding in the back, Crepas prides itself on its rooftop, offering an alfresco screening experience. Inspired by L.A and New York’s “Drive-In” theaters, every Monday and Wednesday at 8 PM this spot transforms into an outdoor cinema, running the latest 21st-century hits. Movies and delicious crepes in hand sound like a match made in heaven.
The next screenings include classics such as The Shining, The Exorcist and Inglorious Bastards, so check the weather forecast, and free up an evening because this is definitely high on the list of The Bubble’s recommendations. The can’t miss screening is Halloween on October 24th to get your adrenaline pumping and palms sweating in preparation for the real thing on the 31st (the real festivities, not the real mass killings in the movie, just to be clear).
Crepas Cinema Club – Gurruchaga 1791 – Tickets
ICANA: For the Documentary Lovers
Whilst ICANA (Instituto Cultural Argentino Americano) doesn’t necessarily have the charm that our past two suggestions hold (it isn’t necessarily somewhere you would go to hang out and relax), it’s the ultimate location for true film lovers, who aren’t simply satisfied by American classics. We would recommend this location to those with an artistic eye, and who are interested in all things media, from music and journalism to documentaries and short films.
This month’s screenings include both a tribute to the renowned Philip Seymour Hoffman and a ciclo of documentaries showcasing the best rock throughout the ages. So if you see a green light when you hear the words Love Liza, Flawless or Jimi Hendrix, we would definitely recommend making the trip to see what this is all about.
El Museo de Cine: For Film Critics & Connoisseurs
El Museo de Cine will be screening twelve classics from Mexico’s Golden Era of Film, with the first movie being screened last Saturday. The series will begin with the first Spanish-speaking film to win the Golden Globe called La Perla by Emilio Fernández, so it’s kind of a big deal. These black and white wonders will give you an insight into a Mexico you didn’t necessarily knew existed.
Located in La Boca, the museum prides itself on holding a collection of 65,000 reels of film dating back to first years of cinema. This space can be more than just an evening activity – full of old cameras, projectors, and cinematographic elements, it would be easy to get lost here in everything film-related for the day. So get down early and enjoy all that the museum has to offer before spending the evening immersed in Mexico’s legendary icons.
(Note: There will be English Subtitles, so you don’t need to worry about getting lost in a land of uncertainty).
Museo del Cine – Agustín R. Caffarena 51 – Tickets for Mexican Series
Club Cultural Matienzo: For the Underground Flicks
A quirky, community-based space generally used for hosting concerts, workshops, and exhibitions, Matienzo is the ideal location to screen independent and thought-provoking films, and this is exactly what it will be doing.
With its next screening on Wednesday, October 10th, Matienzo will be exhibiting the works of a new generation of Bolivian filmmakers, revealing their own stories, breaking down social stereotypes and proposing new viewpoints on future actors. This isn’t the type of cinema you would go to with your family, but it is definitely thought-provoking and will leave you with a new lease on life. Who would have known that Bolivia had such a contingent of aspiring directors? I definitely didn’t.
Centro Cultural Matienzo – Pringles 1249 – Tickets
Bonus Track: If this is something that seems appealing, you should also check out the monthly Venezuelan film screenings at Caracas Bar on Guatemala 4802 hosted by FECIVE, which usually hosts intimate live interviews with directors and actors, alongside some incredibly moving and artistic footage of life in Venezuela.
As the name itself suggests, Caracas Bar celebrates all things Venezuelan, so why not treat yourself to an arepa or a bowl of tequeños while you’re at it. The organizers have also been keen on cinema as a means of cultural exchange and are now hosting a couple of Argentine short films a month alongside their Venezuelan counterparts. In this sense, film really does bring communities together.