Classic films in NZ cinemas this August


Classic films continue to make a welcome return to cinemas (hopefully) near you.

While the global movie industry continues to get back up to speed in the face of the global pandemic, Aotearoa cinemas continue to play a range of atypical films ranging from thought-stimulating independent dramas to “Russell Crowe going apeshit in a ninety-minute hissy fit of murder and mayhem.”

Our fair country has also seen a big resurgence of classic films returning to the big screen. See below for a taste of classic films playing nationwide this month, alongside one-off-(ish) screenings in select locations.

UPDATE AUGUST 5: Inception has a release date, superb Korean horror Train to Busan and its sequel Peninsula play multiple centres, and Back to the Future has a very special concert screening.


Star Wars: A New Hope

Where to watch

The movie that started the phenomenon is playing in MANY cinemas across Aotearoa. We won’t patronise you with a synopsis.

Train to Busan

Where to watch

Korea’s modern zombie classic horror-thriller follows a group of terrified passengers fighting their way through a countrywide outbreak, aboard a bullet train and hoping for sanctuary from the hungry hordes. See it on the big screen ahead of its sequel Peninsula, also in select cinemas this week.

The Little Mermaid

Where to watch

Pay respect to the 1989 animated musical that ushered in the Disney renaissance by revisiting it on the big screen. Timely, too, as the film’s late great songwriter Howard Ashman has a doco on Disney+ this month.

Back to the Future

Where to watch

Go back to the cinema and then the future with the brilliant first chapter of Robert Zemeckis’ peerless Back to the Future trilogy. And if you’re in Auckland, you’ll definitely want to know about the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra’s special live performance event: Back to the Future in concert.

Aliens

Where to watch

You may have been lucky enough to have caught Ridley Scott’s Alien in cinemas. Consider yourself double-lucky with James Cameron’s action sequel hitting theatres.

Pretty Woman

Where to watch

One of the great romantic-comedies features the famous pairing of Richard Gere, playing a successful corporate mogul, and Julia Roberts, as the carefree call-girl he falls for.

The Sound of Music

The Sound of Music

Where to watch

Julie Andrews plays one of cinema’s most iconic nuns in this 1965 musical, a big winner at the Academy Awards.

Fight Club

Where to watch

Released in the magical cinema year of 1999, David Fincher’s head-twisting thriller is well worth a second watch. And if you haven’t seen it yet, it’s most definitely worth a first watch.

Inception

Where to watch

Yep, Christopher Nolan’s mind-bending action film turns ten which now makes it old enough to be called a “classic.” It’s playing in select cinemas August 20, a week before Tenet‘s NZ release.

Titanic

Where to watch

Another James Cameron hit, winner of 11 Academy Awards, mixes a historical disaster with an old-fashioned romance.

Big Trouble in Little China

Where to watch

A cult hit starring Kurt Russell as a hard-boiled truck driver, Jack Burton, who gets caught in a bizarre conflict within San Francisco’s Chinatown.

Dark City

Auckland One-Off Screenings

Dark City

Where to watch

Alex Proyas’s underseen sci-fi mystery classic about a man who struggles with memories of his past, including a wife he cannot remember, in a nightmarish world with no sun…

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

Where to watch

The unique oddball romantic comedy follows a sci-fi premise – a couple undergoes a scientific procedure to erase their memories of each other after things turn sour…

Heat

Where to watch

Michael Mann’s gripping LA crime drama, famed for the pairing of screen acting giants Robert de Niro and Al Pacino.

The Lion in Winter

Where to watch

Peter O’Toole and Katharine Hepburn lead this classic Middle Ages drama that garnered three Oscars, two Golden Globes and 2 BAFTAs.

Miami Connection

Where to watch

A martial arts rock band squares off against Miami’s drug-pushing motorcycle ninjas in this cult ’80s actioner that disappeared for decades after its initial release…

The Third Man

Where to watch

This Orson Welles-starring mystery from 1948 was named the best British film of the 20th Century by the British Film Institute in 1999.

THX 1138

Where to watch

George Lucas gave the world advance notice of his formidable talent with his classic debut feature, adapted from his award winning short film with encouragement from Francis Ford Coppola.

Wellington One-Off Screenings

Alien

Where to watch

Ridley Scott’s sci-fi horror classic enjoyed a temporary run a while ago. If you missed it and reside in our capital city, you might be able to catch this in your face…

The Big Lebowski

Where to watch

The Coen brothers’ comedy masterpiece and cult classic aims for another strike in Welly.

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

Where to watch

The finale of Sergio Leone’s Three Dollars spaghetti-western trilogy starring Clint Eastwood as The Man With No Name.

South Island One-Off Screening

Kind Hearts and Coronets

Where to watch

Robert Hamer’s classic 1949 crime comedy following a man who, after his mother’s death, attempts to kill off all eight relatives that stand between him and the inheritance.

Taxi Driver

Where to watch

The seminal 1976 Scorsese/De Niro flick that made a lot of shirtless men stare in the mirror and say: “…you lookin’ at me?”

Some Like It Hot

Where to watch

Billy Wilder’s classic 1959 comedy starring Marilyn Monroe alongside Jack Lemmon and Tony Curtis (both in drag).