The best independent cinemas in regional Victoria to visit this summer

The best independent cinemas in regional Victoria to visit this summer

Words by Benjamin Lamb

With theatres now fully reopened, and plenty of great films showing at the moment, it’s the perfect time to support Victoria’s vast selection of independent picture houses.

Gone are the days of heading to the movies and sitting in an uncomfortable seat, munching on some overpriced popcorn and watching the latest Hollywood hit on a tiny screen. 

Nowadays, after the rise of streaming, cinemas across the state are adapting and making an unforgettable experience out of going to the cinema, through premium seats, alcohol, and putting on some of the quirkiest films out there.

Today we’re diving into some of regional Victoria’s coolest cinemas that are definitely worth checking out.

Sun Cinema Bright

Bright’s independent Sun Cinema (Formally Cloud 9) truly feels like you’re seeing a movie in the clouds. Their beautifully refurbished old school barn puts on some of the biggest Hollywood hits to some of the coolest arthouse films, making sure everyone type of moviegoer is happy. 

It’s one of Regional Vic’s best cinemas, it brings the best of theatres from years past into one awesome package. Coupled with an unforgettable candy bar, you can sit in comfort with a beer or two for a great night out, and ends up being pretty cheap for a premium experience too!

Check out some more info here


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Lakes Squash And Movie Theatre

This cool, real-life odd couple has quickly become one of Lake’s Entrance hottest spots, with many flocking to it over the holiday period. As the name suggests, this place is half cinema and half squash court. Lakes Squash and Movie Theatre garners a bunch of visitors, who can enjoy the latest blockbuster, then work off the popcorn on the squash / racquetball court. 

If you’ve never played, the amazing staff there will offer a quick rundown for free! It makes for a great day out with family and friends. Lakes Squash and Movie Theatre is on Myers St in the heart of the town. 

Check out some more info here

Lorne Theatre

Lorne’s premier theatre is one of the state’s only single-screen theatres – a truly cool movie seeing experience indeed, making it feel like the film you’re seeing is a pretty big deal. 

They’ve got some bargain tickets, a massive cinema with super comfortable seats, and even though they’re limited to showings, they’ve still got some of the biggest and best movies out there. This theatre is perfect for those holiday days when it’s too wet, or for locals looking for a fun night out. 

Check out what’s showing here.

Mansfield Armchair Cinema (MAC)

This cinema calls themselves a ‘unique community asset,’ and it truly is. Mansfield’s popular cinema is run by students, who are able to immerse themselves in the interesting world of films, and learn some vital life skills, and after paying all the students, any revenue Mansfield Armchair Cinema earns goes directly to some awesome community events, making you feel good about buying that chocolate bar, or that extra box of popcorn. 
If you’re a regular moviegoer, MAC’s movie membership is super worth your money – each month, you’ll get a free Gold Class Upgrade and up to $4 off every other ticket, making it a truly inexpensive experience compared to many other cinemas out there. 

For an extra blast from the past, they also have a dvd hire section in their cinema, so it’s time to dust off that player in the back room.

Check out some more info and all the DVD’s they’ve got in stock here.  

Regent Cinema Ballarat

Ballarat’s Regent Cinema first came about way back in 1938, back then, the cinema fit a whopping 2,000 people. It was enjoyed by many troops from across the world who were stationed close to the theatre during the war. 

Customers enjoy the grandeur of the theatre, enjoying the historic and heritage associated with the building, especially the beautiful chandelier. Coupled with some amazing staff, a visit to Regent Theatre will certainly be one to remember. 

Check out some more info and movie showtimes here.

The Pivotonian Cinema

In what may be the coolest addition to this list, Geelong’s Pivotonian Cinema is definitely worth a visit once in your lifetime. They state they want to be able to illustrate the unique and interesting nature of Geelong, which they truly do, by carefully selecting movies to put on from all corners of the earth. These aren’t just the latest Hollywood hit, you’ll find some of the most heart-warming foreign films, some informative documentaries, and absolutely absurd arthouse dramas. Their amazing candy bar is jam packed with some the best local Beer and Wine, and some tasty snacks you won’t be able to find anywhere else. 

For less than half the price of a ticket at other cinemas, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t head to The Pivotonian. 

Check out all the movies currently showing at The Pivotonian here.


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