(SPOT.ph) Manila's movie scene just keeps growing, thanks to high-end cinemas and annual film festivals that are mushrooming all over the Metro. Tickets don't always come cheap, which is why a lot of people usually wait for DVD releases or shell out for films that they think are worth the P200 to P300. Don't let a tight budget keep you from seeing critically acclaimed gems or thought-provoking flicks. We round up 10 places in Manila that let you catch a movie without having to spend a single peso.
Cinematheque Centre Manila
Although the Film Development Council of the Philippines' Cinematheque Centre usually offers paid screenings, they also occasionally host screenings with free admission for both classic and contemporary movies. Some film festivals, such as the recent World Premieres Film Festival, are also screened for free at the Cinematheque.
Instituto Cervantes de Manila
If you're a regular at Instituto's weekly film screenings, then you probably already know that they've moved to a new office at the heart of Makati. For now, they're hosting joint screenings of Spanish films for free at the Cinematheque (in partnership with the FDCP), but they intend to go back to regular film screenings once their new office in Intramuros opens this 2016. And yes, they will still be free!
Instituto Cervantes de Manila is at Unit D, G/F Ayala Tower I, Philippine Stock Exchange Tower Plaza, Ayala Triangle, Ayala Avenue, Makati City. For movie schedules and more information, visit Instituto's website or Facebook page.
UP Film Institute's Cine Adarna and Videotheque
A favorite of avid moviegoers, UPFI's 800-seater Cine Adarna and 80-seater Videotheque often screens local films free from MTRCB censorship. Occasionally, they also have screenings for classic Filipino films that are free of charge, and on a first-come, first-serve basis. If you're lucky, you can also catch reruns of entries from Cinemalaya and other similar festivals a few weeks after the regular theater run.
Cinema '76 Film Society
Looking to catch some hard-to-find indie gems? Cinema '76 houses a micro-theater that seats about 60 people, catering solely to Filipino independent cinema. The tickets are priced at just P100, but they also do free film screenings, depending on their lineup. Their movie roster changes every week, with films that range from contemporary movies to classic favorites. Plus, you can also catch the occasional Q&A with the film's cast and crew!
Cinema '76 Film Society is at 160 Luna Mencias Street, Barangay Addition Hills, San Juan City. For movie schedules and more information, visit Cinema '76's Facebook page.
Lopez Museum and Library
Restored art isn't the only thing you can see at Lopez Museum! They offer free screenings in the form of Replay, their bi-annual celebration of Filipino films that coincides with the launch of new museum exhibits. These aren't your ordinary film screenings, either: Lopez Museum also hosts lectures with the cast and crew to give audiences a more in-depth look at the movies. This year's edition of Replay is happening in September, but a list of films has yet to be released as of writing.
Lopez Museum and Library is at G/F Benpres Building, Exchange Road corner Meralco Avenue, Ortigas Center, Pasig City. For movie schedules and more information, visit Lopez Museum's website or Facebook page.
CCP Arthouse Cinema
Have you ever wanted to catch a Cinemalaya film, but never seem to make your schedule fit once the film festival rolls around? The Arthouse Cinema at the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) screens Cinemalaya movies every second and last Thursday of the month at 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. in the CCP Dream Theater. And yes, admission is always free!
CCP Arthouse Cinema is at Tanghalang Manuel Conde (CCP Dream Theater), Roxas Boulevard corner Pablo Ocampo Sr. Street, CCP Complex, Pasay City. For movie schedules and more information, visit CCP's website or Facebook page.
Korean Cultural Center
For lovers of K-Pop and all things Korean, head to their Cultural Center in BGC on Fridays to catch a free screening at the KCC Wave Hall. Screenings aren't just limited to Korean films; they also show concert movies of your favorite K-Pop acts. They post a monthly schedule on their Facebook page, so it's best to regularly check for updates.
Korean Cultural Center of the Philippines is at 2/F Mancor Corporate Building, 32nd Street, Bonifacio Global City. For movie schedules and more information, visit KCC's Facebook page.
Alliance Française de Manille
Need a break from your French lessons? Catch a free movie at Af de Manille's Cine Club, held in their auditorium every Wednesday at 8:30 p.m. They aren't limited to just subtitled French films; they also screen Filipino indie films every third Wednesday of the month. Don't forget to bring a friend!
Blacksoup Cafe + Artspace
Who says Maginhawa is home solely to unique and budget-friendly eats? This cozy restaurant regularly hosts weekly movie screenings of a diverse array of genres, whether it's Lino Brocka classics or fun, modern-day flicks like Chef and Julie & Julia. There's no entrance fee; all you need is to order some food and comfortably settle in!
Blacksoup Cafe + Artspace is at Unit G, 154 Maginhawa Street, Sikatuna Village, Quezon City. For movie schedules and more information, visit Blacksoup's Facebook page.
Museum of Contemporary Art and Design
The next time you see a modern-art exhibition, throw in a movie or two! MCAD Manila does monthly film screenings every Wednesday and Friday at 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. Their selections are usually award-winning films and documentaries, with screenings that are free and open to the public. MCAD may sometimes be closed in preparation for new exhibits, so screenings will be held in special rooms at the School of Design and Arts Campus.
The Museum of Contemporary Art and Design is at the G/F Benilde School of Design and Arts Campus, Dominga Street, Malate, Manila. For movie schedules and more information, visit MCAD Manila's website or Facebook page.
Photos from the official websites and Facebook pages of Cinematheque Centre Manila, Instituto Cervantes de Manila, UP Film Institute, Korean Cultural Center, Af de Manille, and Museum of Contemporary Art and Design. Photos courtesy of Lopez Museum and Library and SPOT.ph archives.