The giant 20-screen theater complexes with stadium-style seating are not the only game in town when it comes to finding a venue for your Friday night movie date. Give an independent cinema a try. There may not be 3D and the concession stand may be smaller, but these independent movie theaters more than make up in character what they lack in size. Read on to get a glimpse of the best of the best independent theaters.


Regent Square Theater
1035 S Braddock Ave
Pittsburgh, PA 15218
(412) 682-4111

If old Hollywood classics are your thing, the Regent Square Theater is the place to be on Sunday nights at 8 p.m. You can’t go wrong with a theater that screens “Casablanca,” “To Kill A Mockingbird” and “Charade.” Although showing Sunday night old-time movies is the event most well known to its neighborhood, Regent Square Theater also runs current, popular movies the other six days of the week on its single screen. If the idea of 3D and eardum-splitting surround-sound makes you avoid the movies but you’d still like to see a recent popular film, try the Regent Square Theater the next time you get the urge for some true cinema. Call the theater phone number for the showtime hotline.

(credit: The Oaks Theater/Facebook)

The Oaks Theater
310 Allegheny River Blvd
Oakmont, PA 15139
(412) 828-6311

Another single-screen theater, The Oaks is unique for its special screenings like Cine Brunch on the second Saturday of each month where moviegoers can munch on brunch treats from the famous Oakmont Bakery, which is right down the street. Cine Brunch movies are of the “Annie Hall” and “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” genre – movies that get more notorious and beloved as the years go by. Get there by 10 a.m. for brunch and be treated to a pre-movie talk with the other moviegoers sponsored by the Oakmont Branch of the Carnegie Library. Not one to go to the movies at brunch time? Check out the late-night cult-film festival that runs all summer on Friday and Saturday nights. Go to The Oaks Theater website for a schedule of special events and movie times.

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The Manor
1729 Murray Ave
Pittsburgh, PA 15217
(412) 422-7729

If you like the idea of a small, independent theater experience but still want to see a first-run, big-budget movie, The Manor is for you. There are some obscure, independent films thrown in the mix, but you can find some blockbuster-style movies at this multi-screen Squirrel Hill Theater as well. Bonus: see a movie and have a better-than-popcorn movie snack. The owner of The Manor just finished a huge overhaul of the theater to celebrate its 90th year of operation. Treat yourself to a light dinner and some libations at the aptly-named M Bar and Cinebistro.


Harris Theater
809 Liberty Ave
Pittsburgh, PA 15222
(412) 682-4111

Don’t expect to find big-budget, summer blockbusters at this downtown theater. Established as an art movie theater turned red-light district theater turned art movie theater again, the Harris Theater’s history is as colorful as the genre of movies it plays. With 200 seats, the Harris Theater is a nonprofit theater that returned to its roots when the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust bought the theater and brought it into the Cultural District. Check the Pittsburgh Filmmakers website for more information and special events.

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Twin Hi-Way Drive-In
5588 Steubenville Pike
Pittsburgh, PA 15205
(412) 494-4999

Try out the ultimate independent movie theater experience by taking in a movie at the drive in. One of the only drive-in theaters still in operation in the Pittsburgh area, the Twin Hi-Way Drive-In is just minutes from downtown and shows current blockbuster movies every week during the summer. For the price of $6.50 (adults), you get admission to the double feature that day. Looking for a fun Saturday night date? Head to this drive-in on Saturdays for its weekly classic car cruise before the movies start at dusk.

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Sally Turkovich Wright lives in her beloved city of Pittsburgh with her husband, Jason and German Shepherd, Zeus. She is a policy analyst by training, an eyewear stylist by trade and an amateur healthy-living advocate by choice. She also writes a column for Twoday Magazine. Catch up with her there at