The River Oaks Theatre is a staple of the Houston community. Originally built in 1939, the Art Deco movie theater is nestled in the middle of the River Oaks Shopping Center. In 1976 Landmark Theatres took over operations and has maintained the venue ever since.
The theater serves a niche market by being one of the only places in the city to screen independent and foreign films. It also stays true to its historic roots by showing classic cinema as well as cult classics every Friday and Saturday night at midnight. The midnight series is probably most famous for showing “Rocky Horror Picture Show” every few weeks throughout the year. The lineup for these showings changes weekly, so you can make your next midnight movie plan easily by checking the theater’s calendar.
Surrounded by an abundance of restaurants and shops, the location of the theater allows you to map out exactly how you want your night at the movies to go. Couple your movie with an evening of fine dining or just grab an ice cream cone next door. There’s no wrong way to catch a flick.
You can duck into the three-screen theater whenever the mood strikes. If you’re lucky, you’ll land a seat in the large theater downstairs. The screen is still garnished with the original Art Deco styling that will take you back in time. Upstairs, two smaller screens create an intimate setting that really lets you dig into the “art house” vibe. No matter which theater you get corralled into, you’re here for the movies, so just embrace the experience.
The River Oaks Theatre provides a much-needed outlet for the film buffs of Houston. There are only a handful of theaters in town, like River Oaks, that will break away from the blockbuster formula and bring its audience more obscure thought provoking and sometimes even controversial films. This combined with its commitment to bring back films from the audiences’ past is a refreshing taste of culture that the city needs.
• There’s a bar upstairs, so don’t sweat it if you’re early!
• Concession recommendations: Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream treats and vegan cookies.
2009 W. Gray St., Houston, TX 77019
Check for movie times.
Free parking in the surrounding lots.
Yes, depending on what your movie choice is rated.