While Amsterdam might not be the number one place for cinephiles to flock to, there is plenty to do in Amsterdam for film lovers.
I last visited Amsterdam for the IDFA Documentary Film Festival in 2016 and I was pleasantly surprised at the huge, local film community in the Netherlands’ capital city. It fills me with warm fuzzies when I see there are seriously passionate film lovers all over the world.
If you’re partial to a film (or five) and are planning a city break, here is a list of everything happening in Amsterdam for film lovers.
Amsterdam for Film Lovers
1. Check out the top filming locations
Amsterdam has plenty of filming locations that will excite the casual film fan to the ardent cinephile.
The biggest movie of the last ten years to shoot in Amsterdam has to be The Fault in Our Stars (2014). Lucky for you, I have a blog post listing all the filming locations from The Fault in Our Stars in Amsterdam. You gotta take a selfie on the famous bench!
If weepies aren’t your bag (and you’d be forgiven for that) then there are plenty of Hollywood filming locations in Amsterdam too. James Bond movie Diamonds are Forever (1971) features scenes in Amsterdam, as well as Ocean’s Twelve (2004). Check out my Hollywood Film Locations in Amsterdam post for filming locations from popular movies.
2. Hit up a movie (or 2) at an independent cinema
The cinemas and movie theatres are possibly the best things on offer in Amsterdam for film lovers. Unlike, the Netherlands don’t tend to dub foreign films. So, any film in the English language will still be screened in the original English with Dutch subtitles. So even though you can’t see any world cinema in Amsterdam (because the subtitles will likely be Dutch) you can still watch films! Huzzah!
You can read my blog post listing all the top independent cinemas in Amsterdam. But since you’ll be spoilt for choice, I recommend Pathé Tuschinski and Filmhallen if it’s your first trip.
3. Discover new films at one of the film festivals in Amsterdam
I love attending film festivals! And they’re a great thing to do in Amsterdam for film lovers. I’ve already said I attended the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam two years ago, and you can read all about my experience here.
I’ve recently just posted all my.
It might be surprising to learn that the Documentary film festival is actually the biggest ‘main’ film festival in Amsterdam. Although, there are tonnes of smaller, niche film festivals happening year-round. I’d check out I Amsterdam’s list of all the other film festivals in Amsterdam here.
4. Snuggle under the stars watching at an Open-Air Cinema
During the summer months, open-air cinema is perhaps one of the most enjoyable and social ways to consume movies. I’ve had some great experiences watching The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975) at Muncaster Castle here in Cumbria and Galaxy Quest (1999) at the Film4 Summer Screenings in London.
Amsterdam has pretty nice summers and a lot of open-air cinemas to choose from. Favourites include On the Roof Festival which screens films every September on top of the VU University buildings and World Cinema Amsterdam which takes over whole areas of the city every August.
5. Delve into Film History at the EYE Film Museum
I’ve saved the very best thing to do in Amsterdam for film lovers until last. The EYE Film Museum has to be one of the best film museums in existence. It’s an architectural dream and features three cinema screens, a restaurant, a permanent film history exhibition and a temporary exhibit.
I wrote a blog post all about the EYE Film Museum because it’s an absolute gem. It sits across the river Amstel on the Noord district and it cuts quite an imposing silhouette from the train station on the other side.
Those are the top things to do in Amsterdam for film lovers! Have you ticked any off the list? Let me know in the comments below!