The Northwest Film Center and the Portland Art Museum present Cinema Unbound Drive-in Theater | Info + Film Schedule

The Cinema Unbound Drive-In at Zidell Yards welcomes guests to safely gather and experience the power that truly radical and entertaining cinematic storytelling can bring.


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Cinema Unbound Drive-in Theater
Thursdays-Saturday August & October 2020
No Films Labor Day Weekend
Movies will start at dusk
$35 per car | $45 for Trucks, Vans and SUVs
$55 for Premium Seating
More info:

The Zidell Yards
3030 S. Moody Ave, Portland, OR 97201

The Northwest Film Center and Portland Art Museum are creatively collaborating during these socially distanced times to connect with audiences and bring innovative film and new media exhibitions to our community. The Cinema Unbound Drive-In, running August 6–September 27, 2020, welcomes guests to safely gather and experience the power that truly radical and entertaining cinematic storytelling can bring. This will be the first of many ways to change the archaic paradigm of what cinema can—and will—be.

“I grew up going to drive-ins in McAlister, Oklahoma, watching movies under the stars with my family,” says Amy Dotson, Director of the Northwest Film Center. “It was magical no matter what was playing on the big screen! We drank pop, laughed, covered each others’ eyes at the scary parts, and then honked our horns as we exited to signal our neighbors to make it safely back home until we could meet again. Northwest Film Center and Portland Art Museum look forward to bringing a bit of that same timeless magic, joy and community right into the heart of Portland at Zidell Yards.”

What is the Cinema Unbound Drive-In?

Last year, the Northwest Film Center (NWFC) began a creative reimagining dubbed “Cinema Unbound,” a new artistic vision that redefines the notion of cinema to expand beyond the walls of a theater and include cinema, TV, media arts, audio, and immersive storytelling in order to support unique, provocative, and expansive storytellers in new ways.

Our mission is to change for whom, by whom, how and where cinematic storytelling is told. As a first step, NWFC is building out from scratch our Drive-In at Zidell Yards to safely bring together our community to celebrate and explore cinema in all its forms. Bringing together our community—families, artists, front line workers, partners across the city, cinephiles, and those who simply need a healing night out with popcorn under the stars—is what it’s all about.

What makes it unique?

The Drive-In was created for our post-COVID world as a way to gather, untether and dissolve implied boundaries, to wrap our arms around and uplift cinema—and each other—in all our many forms. When we are unbound, we are open to seeing stories from different places, people, and perspectives. Blending cinema classics, indie favorites, new releases, non-fiction, animation, and art across genres and styles, the Cinema Unbound Drive-In speaks to the unboundedness of where we’re headed next.

Each night, you will meet storytellers whose narratives spring from a wide variety of building blocks and backgrounds. Some are first features, some are big-budget flix from those with storied creative careers. Some push boundaries in a future-forward way, and some just make us flat-out laugh and take us back to our youth. Some were made right here in the Northwest, and the rest hail from New York, Hollywood, and representative communities everywhere.

The films and art presented represent the pioneers out there, those who refused to let their creativity—and the creative expression of others—be bound by conventions. People who pushed the boundaries in the past and those who are trying new things in this moment. They are timely and timeless—all stories that make us think, feel, heal, and reflect to help us see the world anew at this critical moment in time.

Cinema Unbound Drive-In Theater presents:

Weekend 1 – Theme: Man Kind
8/6 John Lewis: Good Trouble (NEW RELEASE!) dir. Dawn Porter (2020)
8/7 John Lewis: Good Trouble (NEW RELEASE!) dir. Dawn Porter (2020)
8/8 Moonlight dir. Barry Jenkins (2016)

Weekend 2 – Theme: Ch, Ch, Changes
8/13 Milk dir. Gus Van Sant (2008)
8/14 Fast Times at Ridgemont High dir. Amy Heckerling (1982)
8/15 Do the Right Thing dir. Spike Lee (1989)

Weekend 3 – Theme: Black Lagoons, Bowie & Badass Women
8/20 Creature From the Black Lagoon dir. Jack Arnold (1954)
8/21 Labyrinth dir. Jim Henson (1986)
8/22 Knives and Skin dir. Jennifer Reeder (2019)

Weekend 4 – Theme: Living, Loving & Phoning Home
8/27 Sword of Trust dir. Lynn Shelton (2019)
8/28 E.T. The Extra Terrestrial dir. Steven Spielberg (1982)
8/29 The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert dir. Stephan Elliott (1994)

Weekend 5 – Theme: Suntory and Sports Time
Rescheduled due to poor air quality

Weekend 6 – Theme: Escape & Roll Bounce
9/18 The Great Outdoors dir. Howard Deutch (1988)
9/19 Xanadu dir. Robert Greenwald (1980)
9/20 Love and Basketball (pending) dir. Gina Prince-Blythewood (2000)

Weekend 7 – Theme: There’s No Place Like Home
9/23 A League of Their Own dir. Penny Marshall (1992)
9/24 House Party (pending) dir. Reginald Hudlin (1990)
9/25 Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure (pending) dir. Tim Burton (1985)
9/26 The Shining (pending) dir. Stanley Kubrick (1980)
9/27 Lost in Translation dir. Sofia Coppola (2003)

Weekend 8
10/1 Young Hearts (fka Thunderbolt in Mine Eye)
10/2 Sylvie’s Love
10/3 Marona’s Fantastic Tale
10/04 The Birds dir. Alfred Hitchcock (1963)

Weekend 9
10/8 American Werewolf in London
10/9 Hotel Transylvania
10/10 Possessor

*Films Subject to change

Movies will start at dusk and will feature first-run, repertoire films and features appropriate for children and adults. We will also feature a regional short film before each feature film. Projection mapping provided by the Mobile Projection Unit, and music will be provided by X-Ray FM prior to each screening. Sound will be an in-car experience, over a limited FM transmission.

All tickets and concessions will be sold online, in advance ONLY, through Northwest Film Center and Portland Art Museum’s websites. Tickets are $35 per car, $45 for Trucks, Vans and SUVs, and $55 for Premium Seating.
The Zidell Yards is located at 3030 S. Moody Ave, Portland, OR 97201

All films are subject to change without notice.

For up-to-date event information regarding weather and the Drive In at Zidell Yards, please visit the event’s website. Please assume the show is on unless otherwise noted.

About the Northwest Film Center: Established in 1971, the Northwest Film Center is a Portland, Oregon-based year-round organization, an extension of the Museum and space where artists and audiences explore our region and the world through cinema and cinematic storytelling in all its forms.

About PAM: Founded in late 1892, the Portland Art Museum is the seventh oldest museum in the United States and the oldest in the Pacific Northwest. The Museum is internationally recognized for its permanent collection and ambitious special exhibitions, drawn from the Museum’s holdings and the world’s finest public and private collections.

About Zidell Yards: Located in the heart of Portland’s south waterfront district, Zidell Yards sits at the meeting point of the Portland Aerial Tram, OHSU’s rapidly expanding riverfront campus, South Waterfront’s residential towers, streetcar, the coming light rail, and the river.



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