Revenge of the Art House Theater

Think! Architecture

These four New York cinemas celebrate an era before streaming.

Even as home streaming continues to threaten the existence of the movie theater, these resilient art-house cinemas in New York are proving that there’s still magic to be found in a dark room full of strangers.

Metrograph
The newly opened Deco theater on the Lower East Side features a selection of cult classics, archival prints shown on high-end 35 mm projectors, and newer independent films. Also: buttoned-up ushers, recherché popcorn, and hard-to-find candies. The Commissary, Metrograph’s 1920s throwback restaurant, offers a menu inspired by old-time Hollywood studio cafeterias. 7 Ludlow St.; 212-660-0312; metrograph.com.

Nitehawk Prospect Park
When it opens in the fall, Nitehawk’s second Brooklyn location, in Park Slope, will offer the same three-course dinner as the original, in Williamsburg. Furtive servers will deftly deliver craft cocktails and seasonal fare to and from tables while movies—niche independent films, campy classics, and well-curated wide releases—screen above. 188 Prospect Park West; nitehawkcinema.com.

Quad Cinema
When the Quad Cinema closed its doors in 2015, Greenwich Villagers feared that New York’s oldest multiscreen theater was done for. Instead, the beloved art house underwent a major renovation and will reopen in the spring, with one screen dedicated to classics and three screens playing new independent and foreign films. 34 W. 13th St.; 347-566-5949; quadcinema.com.

Alamo Drafthouse
The Austin-based dine-in theater chain opened its first location in New York City in October, bringing both studio and independent films (and a no-nonsense no–cell phone policy) to downtown Brooklyn. Alamo’s executive chef, Fernando Marulanda, previously of Danny Meyer’s Blue Smoke, created the menu. 445 Albee Sq. West; 718-513-254; drafthouse.com.