Best Summer Movie Events In Washington DC

May 27, 2013 8:00 AM

Photo Credit: Thinkstock

Winter brings Oscar-hopeful movies, but the summer brings out the blockbusters. Big-budget action flicks thrive during these months while kids are out of school. While those are fun, there are other options for your viewing pleasure. Here are some outdoor screenings, film festivals, movie premieres and other movie events you should put down on your calendar this summer.

Soul Power
African Art Museum
950 Independence Ave. S.W.
Washington, DC 00000
(202) 633-1000

Date: June 5, 2013

When you hear “The Rumble in the Jungle,” you should think of the phenomenon that was the Muhammad Ali-George Foreman title fight in Zaire; now the Democratic Republic of Congo. As one of the most famous, debated and promoted boxing events, it is hard to think of anything else. But if you were around in 1974, or are a soul music scholar, you might also think of the Zaire 74 festival. Envisioned by South African trumpeter Hugh Masekela and promoted by Don King as a promotional event for the fight, the festival featured big name music acts from around the world including James Brown, Celia Cruz and B.B. King. “Soul Power” documents the legendary concert and features some of the same acts and fighters. Spend the afternoon enjoying some soul music.

AFI Docs
AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center
8633 Colesville Road
Silver Spring, MD 20910
(301) 495-6700

Date: June 19 to June 23

One of the most respected film festivals in the country, and arguably the most respected in the metro area, the AFI Docs always showcases diverse works. Formerly the Silverdocs Film Festival, it is now going through another change, or rather a next step. The festival will now be expanding to have screenings at other theaters in DC. This is an opportunity for other theaters and film lovers to enjoy the festival. Over the past 11 years, the festival has brought inspiring, enraging and overall thought-provoking documentaries. Don’t miss out this year.

EuroAsia Shorts
Goethe Institut of Washington
812 7th St. N.W.
Washington, DC 20001
(202) 289-1200

Date: June 10 to June 15

Short films can impact you just as much and sometimes even more so than long films. They can empower you to go out and learn more about a subject, or to finally go out and do that thing you always wanted to do. The EuroAsia Shorts presents short films from all around Asia and Europe, bringing several cultures together with one theme: future. Over six nights, screenings will be held at various embassies, theaters and cultural centers, and will include post-screening panel discussions. Reserve you seat for this fantastic film series.

Related: Best Outdoor Concerts to Look Forward To This Summer Near DC

Screen on the Green
The National Mall
Between 7th and 12th Streets
Washington, DC 20565
(877) 262-5866

Date: July to August

The National Mall has had thousands of people flooding to march for changes, to celebrate Inaugurations and even to have pillow fights. One of the best events on the mall is HBO’s Screen on the Green. Watching classics films like last year’s features of “Psycho” and “It Happened One Night” on the big screen makes for a wonderful evening. It’s also quite romantic for those looking for a summer date night. This year’s selection should be as equally iconic.

18th Annual Made in Hong Kong Film Festival
Freer/Sackler Gallery
1200 Jefferson Drive S.W.
Washington, DC 20013
(202) 633-1000

Date: June to August

Hong Kong is a bustling city that gives New York City a run for its money. With a dynamic display of lights, food, culture, finance, arts, inovation and fashion, it is no surprise that the films that come out of Hong Kong are as complex and vibrant as the city itself. The selection includes comedies, action thrillers, period pieces and mysteries. And to commemorate the 10th anniversary of Leslie Cheung’s death, one of the most talented and beloved Chinese artists, the festival will screen four of his films, including one chosen by the public. This is a must see for film geeks.

Related: Best Independent Movie Theaters In The DC Area

Folashade Oyegbola is a freelance writer covering all things D.C. Her work can be found on

More From CBS DC

CBSLocal App
Watch Live

Listen Live