Philly is full of great odd-ball movie events where you get to see cool flicks in non-traditional settings. The $3 Monday Movies at the Trocadero, and the free Secret Cinema series are two of my favorites, and now the MST3K-style Mega Bad Movie Night at the Academy of Natural Sciences has also made the list!
This museum-based event, which only happens a few times each year, screens “awesomely awful” movies, like Bigfoot, Sharktopus and Mega Piranha. The flicks are spectacularly campy with ridiculous plot leaps and antiquated special effects, which makes great comic fodder for the Academy’s own experts who contribute Mystery Science Theater 3000-style commentary during the screening.
The $15 ticket includes the movie, free food and drink, and museum admission, so make the most of your ticket by arriving when doors open at 6:30, and checking out the exhibits at the Academy. Massive dinosaur skeletons, wildlife dioramas and a butterfly garden are only some of the cool things to see, while snacking on the free beer and food (which was generously being provided by Drink Philly, the night I was there, although I see they have changed over to a cash bar for the next screening, which would push this date over $15 per person, for those who want to drink).
This event would be great for a first date, with lots to look at and chat about, including special exhibits set up to highlight the scientific aspects of the film’s subject matter. Or go with a group of friends and participate in the back-talk and heckling that the commentators invite. This is not the event to go to if you are trying to watch every frame of the film though – there is too much chatter in the theater to treat this like a private screening. It’s meant to be more of a free-for-all, but that’s part of what makes it a fun and unique event!
How cheap we talkin’: Tickets are $15 per person, but include museum entry and free snacks during the event!
Why this will impress your date: Because science is cool. And so is drinking beer in a museum with a Stegosaurus.
The Inside Game: This event often sells out, so it’s one you need to plan ahead and get tickets for early. It’s 18+ to attend, 21+ to drink. Also, make sure you get enough to drink before the show starts – there’s no food or drink allowed in the theater.
Score Extra Points: By taking your date inside the live butterfly exhibit. Inside you’ll find a humid, tropical garden filled with colorful plants and live butterflies flying around from Central and South America, East Africa, and Southeast Asia.