Your little starlet is already making a play for next year’s awards right in your living room. Sure, the local cineplex is a great way to show them life on the big screen, but the D.C. area has several more options, from the eclectic arthouse theater to the trendy drafthouse , where you can see a film, grab a snack and maybe enjoy the cheap seats, with or without your young scene stealers.

Photo: Joakim Wahlander

AMC Theaters
Most of AMC’s 19 locations around the DMV now offer the latest and greatest in premium seating and other conveniences, in addition to the traditional daytime discount for seniors and little people’s favorite movie showtimebefore 4 PM. Also consider joining the chain’s loyalty program AMC Stubs, and take advantage of $5 Ticket Tuesdays , when you purchase at the box office.


Arlington Cinema and Drafthouse
Get a discount when you go to the movies on a Monday, or host a kid’s birthday party on a Saturday morning when G and PG rated films are featured at this low key standby since 1985. In 2016, the owners added comedy nights to the cinematic offerings, hosting live comics from Mad TV, Comedy Central and more. And have we mentioned the pub style food, or the adult bevvies?


Alamo Cinema
This newest movie and eats combo in Ashburn, with a Woodbridge location opening soon, advertises occasional pay-what-you-can Kids Camp shows, the proceeds of which support local schools. Don’t swap diaper changes for scene changes either at Alamo for All where all ages are welcome and you can get up to change the nappie anytime. Ticket prices are just $7 weekday mornings, and $10 for afternoon and weekend daytime shows.

Online: drafthouse,com

What’s that you say?  Junior has been a bit of crybaby today?  You said it, not us.  But not to worry, this indie film mecca with two locations in Northern Virginia, and the ultra-chic pop-up at Union Market, has you covered.  Bring the babe  to the movies  Wednesdays at Noon in D.C., or 11 a.m. Mondays in Farifax for a Crybaby Matinee.  Check under the Programs and Events tabs for the latest showings.  Tickets for all daytime shows at Angelika are $8 per person.


The Avalon
Tops on the list at this Chevy Chase Circle favorite is the Weekend Family Matinee series which features singing and magic acts on its old fashioned stage, with the occasional puppet show, or family friendly film thrown in. Under its gilded painted ceiling, the Avalon’s screenings of foreign and other non-mainstream selections are often inaccessible elsewhere, and make for a great date night, or perhaps brunch at the nearby Bread and Chocolate, also with a reasonably priced children’s menu.


Old Greenbelt Theater
This lively art deco inspired relic is in the heart of Old Greenbelt, itself declared a National Historic District in 1997. The theater shows first run movies, and is host to myriad film and other programs for all ages, including a biweekly Monday morning Storytime on Screen, free to the community, and the Family Series offered on weekends with a broad variety of performances and kids fest film screenings.


Do you have a favorite movie theater for kids? Tell us about it in the comments below. 

—Carolyn Ross