San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

Local theaters perfect for any occasion

Though there are first-rate theatrical productions presented on campus at the Don Powell and the Experimental Theatres, those new to San Diego should also check out the wide range of venues for plays and films located off campus in America’s Finest City. Tickets for most movies can be ordered on and check out for discounts on shows.



AMC La Jolla 12

Comfy reclining chairs paired with great visual and audio presentation make this theater a very relaxing place to catch a flick. Diverse selections range from independent dramas to big budget blockbusters. The 21-and-up alcohol friendly theaters also make for a unique viewing experience.

Arclight La Jolla

The UTC Mall movie palace has delicious popcorn and a lively atmosphere with its own café, bar and gift shop. Classic international flicks often screen at this theater. It’s worth noting that Arclight La Jolla occasionally features live Q & As with actors and filmmakers.

 Cinepolis Luxury Cinemas Del Mar

Reclining chairs, at-your-seat waiter service and big screens with rich audio make this theater an immersive experience. Food selections range from classic snacks, such as popcorn and pretzels, to unique options of gourmet meals and beverages. Because tickets are expensive, Cinepolis is an indulgence but fun and worth the cost for special occasions.

Landmark Theatres (Hillcrest, La Jolla, Kensington)

The best popcorn and great movie selections are the main reasons why Landmark Theatres are the most popular locations in San Diego to watch independent films. All three sites, especially the Ken Cinema, tend to include off-beat, hidden gems not released anywhere else in San Diego.

Edwards Mira Mesa Stadium 18

This is one of the most optimum spots to catch an IMAX movie. Watching upcoming flicks such as Christopher Nolan’s latest, “Interstellar,” and Peter Jackson’s “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies” on such a big screen should enhance the epic qualities of these soon-to-be released, highly anticipated motion pictures.



The Old Globe

Thanks to the “$20 UNDER 30” program, students can see a variety of high-quality shows ranging from Shakespeare to modern musical theater in the beautiful and historical Balboa Park. An intriguing upcoming show is the world premiere musical “Bright Star,” which features original music from Edie Brickell and legendary comedy actor Steve Martin.

Cygnet Theatre

With CygNext memberships, fans younger than 30 can see theatrical experiences for $20 and attend events and post-show mixers. Coming soon are two dramas in repertory written by Sam Shepard, “Fool for Love” and “True West.” They are directed by San Diego State alumnus and Cygnet Theatre Artistic Director Sean Murray.

La Jolla Playhouse

“30 and Under” allows viewers to get $20 tickets to cutting-edge productions at this playhouse located at University of California, San Diego. This year, the LJPH will include the world premiere play “Kingdom City” and a live musical adaptation of Walt Disney Animation Studios’ “The Hunchback of Notre Dame.”

San Diego Repertory Theatre

Season 39 at Horton Plaza features “The Pianist of Willesden Lane” starring Grammy-nominated pianist Mona Golabek, and “Everybody’s Talkin’: The Music of Harry Nilsson” featuring Tony winners Alice Ripley and Gregory Jbara. Theatergoers will likely not want to miss these highly anticipated events.

North Coast Repertory Theatre

A theatre at a strip mall in Solana Beach might sound unusual, yet first-rate theatrical experiences make it a jewel of a playhouse. The theatre’s artistic director David Ellenstein will be directing several shows this season, including the Neil Simon comedy “Chapter Two,” the two-character drama “Freud’s Last Session” and a Stephen Sondheim revue “Side by Side by Sondheim.”

About the Contributor
David Dixon, Staff Writer
Since, 2005, when he became a writer for the now defunct Rated G column at the San Diego Union Tribune, David Dixon has been writing theatre and film reviews, interviews, covering Comic-Con, and other entertainment related stories, for numerous papers and websites. In addition to his experience as the Entertainment Editor of San Diego State University's The Daily Aztec, in 2014 he won First and Second Place in College Print: Reviews from the San Diego Press Club Excellence in Journalism Awards, and in 2013 he was awarded First and Third Place. Currently, David is a staff writer for TDA, a contributor for and a freelance writer for the San Diego Community News Network.
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San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913
Local theaters perfect for any occasion