First published in this months edition of Filmwire.

If you like outdoor cinema but you really don’t like Dirty Dancing or The Greatest Showman, it can often seem as if there’s not much on offer for you. The same films seem to do the rounds every year – Mamma MiaBack To the FutureThe Goonies. But fear not, because it’s not all circus big tops and sparkly ABBA outfits. Below you’ll find a list of ‘alternative’ outdoor cinema options this August in the Midlands, and while you shouldn’t expect 120 Days Of Sodom, each event has something unique or different about it, whether that’s the film itself or where it’s screening.

Saturday 7 August, 7pm at Coventry Cathedral Ruins
CineCov: The Italian Job
It’s a little known fact that parts of The Italian Job’s infamous chase sequence in Turin were actually filmed in huge sewer pipes underneath Coventry. This CineCov screening – part of the ongoing City Of Culture celebrations – was hoping to recreate one of the film’s vehicular stunts, but whilst Covid restrictions have poured water on that idea, the screening will still go ahead this month, with plans to blow some actual bloody doors off sometime in 2022.

Monday 9 and Monday 23 August, 9pm at Luna Springs, Digbeth Arena, Birmingham
Moonlight Cinema
Luna Springs in Digbeth have been running outdoor cinema non-stop over the past couple of months, which means by necessity they’ve had to think a little bit outside the box to fill their programme. Hence these very welcome August screenings of stylish ‘lovers on the run’ drama Queen & Slim (9 Aug) and Luca Guadagnino’s queer romance Call Me By Your Name (23 Aug).

Friday 13 and Saturday 14 August, 6pm at Green Dragon Square, Leicester
An Indian Summer
Leicester’s Green Dragon Square plays host to some classic Bollywood with two screenings of the hit musical Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge, a film that’s been showing almost non-stop in one Mumbai cinema since its original 1995 release.

Thursday 19 August, 8.15pm at Chatsworth House, Derbyshire
Luna Cinema at Chatsworth House
British stately homes always pop up in films, so keep your eyes peeled for regular appearances from Chatsworth House itself in Joe Wright’s 2005 period drama Pride & Prejudice, acting as the home of Matthew Macfadyen’s Mr. Darcy.

Friday 20 August, 9pm at MAC Birmingham
Sundown Cinema: Trainspotting
Marking 25 years since Danny Boyle’s controversial Brit flick took over the world, MAC’s Sundown Cinema screening of the foul-mouthed exploits of Renton, Begbie, Sick Boy and Spud also includes the tantalising offer of Irn Bru cocktails.

Friday 20 to Sunday 29 August, 11pm at Notts Maze Woods, Lime Lane, Nottingham
Cinema In The Woods
Why wait for Halloween to scare yourself silly in the woods? That’s the thinking behind Nottingham’s Sunset Cinema Club, who are hosting a series of late night screenings in Notts Maze Woods, including Hammer’s super spooky 2012 take on The Woman In Black (27 Aug) and Drew Goddard’s very enjoyable meta-horror The Cabin In The Woods (29 Aug).

Friday 20 August, 7pm at Uptonsteel County Ground, Leicester
Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram-Leela
More Bollywood fare for Leicester, as the home of Leicestershire County Cricket Club hosts a showing of the hit 2013 Romeo & Juliet adaptation Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram-Leela.

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