New York City’s iconic skyline, buildings and neighborhoods take center stage at The Central Park Conservancy Film Festival, which brings free movies to the heart of Manhattan for five nights, Aug. 24-28. Each movie features iconic New York City locations and sights – from the Empire State Building in King Kong to the city’s subway in The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3. This is the eighth annual Central Park Film Festival — but it is the first time the movies are being shown in the area just north of Sheep Meadow, behind Mineral Springs, at mid-park and 69th Street. So enter the park at 72nd St from either Fifth Avenue or Central Park West. All screenings begin at 8:00 pm, rain or shine. Gates open at 6:30 pm, so bring a picnic. Guest DJs play sets until the movie begins. All movies close captioned.
Here’s the schedule:
Tuesday, Aug. 24: Fame (1980) This classic ’80s musical flick follows students through their audition, training and graduation at the New York City High School for the Performing Arts.
- NYC icon: Times Square
Wednesday, Aug. 25: The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3 (2009) A remake of the 1974 crime thriller, armed men hijack a New York City subway train and hold passengers hostage in return for a ransom. Dispatcher Walter Graber (Denzel Washington) is left to face off with the crime’s mastermind (John Travolta). 106 min.
- NYC icon: New York City subway
Thursday, Aug. 26: Saturday Night Fever (1977) This disco classic follows Tony Manero (John Travolta), a Brooklyn boy who feels his only chance to make it in life is as king of the dance floor.
- NYC icon: Brooklyn Bridge
Friday, Aug. 27: King Kong (1933) In this cult classic stop-animation film, a giant gorilla called Kong attempts to possess a beautiful blond actress. 100 min. This is the original movie, the black-and-white classic, not the recent remake.
- NYC icon: Empire State Building
Saturday, Aug. 28: Manhattan (1979) , the romantic comedy about a twice-divorced writer (Woody Allen) who is dating a high school girl but finds love with his best friend’s mistress (Diane Keaton), in an eerie plot twist that pre-dated Allen’s real-life romance and marriage to the adopted daughter of his then-wife Mia Farrow.
- NYC icon: Queensboro Bridge
Free movies in one Big Apple icon — Central Park– all with New York City in a starring role.