In honor of Oscar season, and our annual quest to see all of the Best Picture noms, here's our list from earlier this fall of Dallas' best movie theaters.
Verisimilitude. It's the suspension of disbelief you feel when you're watching a film and the line blurs between reality and the story that's engrossing you. It's a phenomenon that happens every single day in theaters all over the world. And in Dallas there are a multitude of theaters in which to kick back, sip a Coke and get your Junior Mints fix, waiting to be transported to another time and place. So in no particular order, here are five favorite places to get our verisimilitude on.
1. The Inwood Theatre (above) (5458 West Lovers Lane Dallas, TX 75209) The theater's iconic exterior combined with a beautiful lobby full of murals, lighting and other original features from its birth in 1947, the now fully-restored Inwood is currently owned by Landmark Cinemas and allows moviegoers to experience a true throwback-style evening. The opposite of high-tech or cutting edge, the Inwood is full of history. A quality spot to catch new releases and indie films, you can choose to grab a drink at the bar before the show, and you can even watch your selected flick from the comfort of a number of couches, loveseats and LoveSacs in the unique "Screening Lounge Auditorium." Adult Ticket Price: $10
2. The Angelika (5321 East Mockingbird Lane Dallas, TX 75206) Tucked into Mockingbird Station (or into the Shops at Legacy if you're of the northern persuasion), the Angelika theater sits on the indie side of the spectrum that spans from über-indie to old-school theater. Modern architecture and a sleek interior welcome moviegoers. A small bar and restaurant on the first floor as well as a snack bar on the second supplies the food and drink, while a mix of independent and mainstream films ensures there's something for everyone. We like the little bottles of Rosa Regale available for purchase, and the convenience of a number of shops, bars and restaurants within walking distance for pre- or post-show shopping, cocktails and/or dining. "Hello Angelica." (Please pardon the Joe vs. The Volcano reference.) Adult Ticket Price: $9.50 See also: The Magnolia. Similar story, features, pricing.
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3. The Texas Theater (231 W. Jefferson Blvd., Dallas, TX 75208) Since 1931, the Texas Theater in Oak Cliff has been thick with history. Like, Howard Hughes and Lee Harvey Oswald history. And now, since 2010, Barak Epstein, Adam Donaghey, Eric Steele and Jason Reimer are making their own history in and out of the projection room. Inside, you can still watch 35mm film, and they screen indie, cult classic, local emerging and underground films. Bonus: the bar in the lobby serves craft beers, prohibition-era cocktails and something called David Lynch Coffee. Grab a seat in the Texas Theater, and watch history happen. Adult Ticket Price: $9.25
4. iPic Theater at The Village at Fairview (321 Town Place Fairview, TX 75069) The iPic is the exact opposite of the small, independent movie house. Yes, it is very, very large. Yes, it is very, very far north in Fairview. But even though it's a humungous megaplex-o-movie-rama, what makes iPic stand out is the ability to choose your seat beforehand, eliminating the need to ever stand in line for any showing, new release or not. Its plethora of food options and large, plush, reclining chairs are all designed to help you relax and allow yourself to be entertained. There are two kinds of tickets available for iPic showings: Premium, or Premium Plus. (Read: expensive and expensive plus.) But if you're a "member," which is free, you are offered a reduced rate for each. So what do you get for the biggest of bucks? An assigned, leather seat, and if you go for the Premium Plus, wait staff, free popcorn, a pillow and a blanket. It's like being on the escape-from-planet-Earth ship in the movie Wall-E: It makes you feel like a gluttonous fool, but at the same time there's just something about it that's kind of awesome. Adult Ticket Price: $13-24
5. The Galaxy Drive-in Theatre (5301 N. Interstate Highway 45 Ennis, TX 75119) Saving the best for last, The Galaxy is Americana at it's best. It's a real drive-in movie theater and it is so worth the drive. Just about 30 or 40 minutes from Dallas, The Galaxy features new releases, double features and your choice of old-school metal speaker sound or using your car stereo to tune in via FM radio frequencies. Get there early to snag a good parking spot and get your setup just right. You'll see everything from families with their kids and dogs in the backs of pickup trucks with blankets spread out to couples cuddling in their back seats. There are just so very many things to love about The Galaxy: the classic feel, double feature set-up, inexpensive snack bar and miniature golf course is just a start. Adult Ticket Price: $6 Flickriver.com
Honorable mention: We have high hopes for the Dallas outpost of the Alamo Drafthouse being built in a somewhat odd location in Richardson. If it's anything like the Austin Alamos, it's going to be a tough act to beat.