Is This Beijing's Best Cinema for English Movies?
I think I may have visited Universal CityWalk more often than actually going into Universal Studios itself – just because I really enjoy walking around the restaurants and shops, hearing distant screams of adrenaline, and soaking in the vibrant atmosphere all for free! And I'm still discovering something fun all the time – for example the Universal CityWalk cinema!
If you're going to watch a movie in Beijing, this is the cinema you should go to. Here's why:
1) It's so spanking brand new
Since Universal Studios and CityWalk just officially opened its doors late last year, everything is still shiny and new! You know how most cinemas smell of either feet or stale popcorn? There's none of that here within the slick new walls of Universal's CityWalk cinema (and let's hope it stays that way!). The seats are spacious, sound system is top notch, and picture quality is absolutely perfect. You might think the tickets cost more, but they are actually the pretty standard price of RMB 50+ for regular 2D films, and RMB 99 for IMAX 2D films.
2) It's usually empty ... like totally
When we went on the Friday afternoon during spring break to watch "Uncharted" (a Playstation game-turned-movie featuring Tom Holland and Mark Walhberg), there was only one other person in the entire cinema. This isn't an anomaly, since most people who make the trip to Universal Studios property aren't just going to watch a movie.
Also, the films that are screened are mostly in their original English soundtracks, so that tends to draw less of a crowd from the local market, giving you plenty of room to stretch out and not worry about disturbing others when your child is yelling at the screen.
3) Pizza party, anyone?
In my opinion, the coolest thing about watching a film in the Universal CityWalk Cinema is how you're allowed to bring pizzas from the Red Oven Pizza restaurant right next door, into the theater and eat them while watching the film! So if you're looking for a low-key movie + pizza party, this is certainly the place to have it!
Universal CityWalk is easily accessible by subway, which is actually a fun ride because it's above-ground, so you don't have to worry about claustrophobia or getting bored since you can observe the city's scenery flying past as you make the 45-minute direct trip on Line 1.
Universal CityWalk: Tongzhou District, Beijing, adjacent to the East 6th Ring Road and Beijing-Harbin Expressway
Images: Vivienne Tseng-Rush