Watching a movie is one of the best things to do in Jakarta
Compared to most movie theaters in France, those in Jakarta have larger screens, more comfortable seats, better technology, more premium features, and above all, they are cheaper...

On the downside, the choice of movie is limited to American blockbusters and Indonesian comedy or horror flicks. If you are hoping to watch the latest art house movies from the Cannes Festival, you'll better forget about it (see below for Independent Cinemas in Jakarta).

I find that Indonesian spectators are rather disciplined when watching a movie: Once the film is started, you'll rarely hear a mobile phone or a noisy discussion. A bigger issue is the smell of the food as everybody is eating something from Hot Dogs to Nasi Goreng... The air-con can also be a problem: I recommend you to bring a small sweater to avoid freezing during the show.

English movies are always in their original version, with subtitles. Nudity will be censored, even mild one, but graphic violence rarely. It seems more appropriate in Indonesia to see people kill each other than kiss.

Multiplex Cinema Chains in Jakarta
Almost all cinemas in Jakarta belong to one of three multiplex chains: Cineplex 21, CGV-Blitz and Cinemaxx.

Cineplex 21 is the largest and oldest cinema chain in Jakarta. It is made of two brands:

- Cinemas 21 are usually located inside inexpensive malls. They are less comfortable and they don't have THX sound system. It's still better than watching from home and the price is unbeatable (around Rp25,000). They screen a lot of Indonesian movies.

- Cinemas XXI (that Indonesians pronounce Eks Eks One) are located in premium locations and they are targeting upper class Indonesians. Prices are not that expensive, you can get a ticket for Rp30,000-Rp40,000 on weekdays and Rp45,000-Rp60,000 on weekends. Some of them feature Premiere XXI studios, with luxury seats (like La-Z-Boy), a special access to a VIP lounge and the possibility to have your food delivered to your seat. The price is approximately Rp100,000 during the week and Rp200,000 on weekends.
The Premiere XXI seats
Part of the Korean brand CGV, they only have upmarket cinemas with the latest equipment and features.

The cost for standard seats varies depending on the cinema, from Rp30,000 during the week for the cheapest (Slipi Jaya) up to Rp70,000 on Saturdays for the most expensive (Grand Indonesia).

They may have some premium auditorium seats available: The highest is Gold Class (up to Rp175,000 per person), followed by Satin Class (up to Rp85,000 per person).
Gold Class seats in CGV-Blitz Megaplex
For couples, Sweetbox seats (up to Rp150,000 for two persons) give you more privacy while the Velvet Class (up to Rp350,000 per bed) allows you to book a basic bed within the cinema. It is particularly popular among young Indonesians who need a quiet place for a date.
Velvet beds
Owned by the Lippo Group, it is a new player with only a few locations as of today. They have 3 categories: Cinemaxx Regular (price around Rp30,000 to Rp50,000), Cinemaxx Gold (premium seats with prices between Rp65,000 and Rp100,000) and Cinemaxx Ultra XD (extra large screen). The latter is only available in Palembang and Lippo Village Tangerang for a price between Rp45,000 and Rp65,000.

Independent Cinemas in Jakarta
There are no proper independent cinemas in Indonesia. The closest to one are Kineforum in Menteng (TIM), sponsored by the Jakarta Arts Council, and Kinosaurus in Kemang. You may see a few Indonesian and German films as well in Goethe House, the German cultural center, every 2nd and 4th Tuesday of the month.

Subtitles in Dharmawangsa Square is worth mentioning as well. It is a tiny 3-studio theater with a collection of art house movies from famous international directors. You can rent the whole studio with a few friends for up to 8 people for Rp230,000/2 hours. You can also bring your own movies. More information on their Facebook page: Subtitles Jakarta.

6 Best Cinemas in Jakarta
Below is my selection of the 6 best cinemas in Jakarta, starting with my favorite:

CGV- Blitz Grand Indonesia
Centrally located, within one of the largest malls in Jakarta, CGV-Blitz Grand Indonesia is easily the best cinema in Jakarta. It is the flagship property of CGV in Indonesia, where they showcase all their latest technologies in movie experience.

They have 11 auditoriums, some with special features like SphereX (a huge curved screen with Dolby Atmos sound system) and 4DX (with shaking seats). Starium screens and Screen X might be built in the future. It is the only cinema in Jakarta with the CGV Gold Class.

XXI Gading
The largest XXI cinema in Jakarta with 13 studios, including 2 Premiere class and 2 with Dolby Atmos sound. The main reason I go there is for the IMAX 3D, with prices starting at Rp50,000 on weekdays and Rp75,000 on weekends. 

XXI Gandaria
This is the second cinema in Jakarta with IMAX 3D technology. It is similar to the one in Gading, but with less studios. Only 1 has a Dolby Atmos sound system.

CGV-Blitz - Mall of Indonesia 
The second largest CGV-Blitz cinema in Jakarta after the one in Grand Indonesia. Opened in 2008, it has 10 auditoriums with 1,768 seats on a total space of 6,400m2. It is rather affordable, only Rp35,000 for a regular seat during the week. Satin class, Velvet Class, 4DX and RealD 3D sound available.

CGV- Blitz Pacific Place
While there is nothing particular about this cinema, I enjoy going there on weekends because I've noticed it is less crowded that elsewhere. They have 2 velvet class auditoriums and a lot of F&B options nearby, making it a perfect spot for a date. They have special screenings of Hindi movies as well.

XXI - Epicentrum
The particularity of this cinema is that it features a huge 17X8 meters screen, among the largest in Jakarta. It is particularly cheap, between Rp25,000 and Rp35,000 even on weekends.

XXI - Metropole
XXI Metropole - oldest cinema in Jakarta
This cinema is housed in a renovated art-deco building and it is the oldest cinema in Jakarta. Now part of the group 21, it is worth a try for a unique movie experience. Just outside, there are several popular street food stalls with delicious food.

Djakarta XXI - Sarinah
In the heart of Jakarta, in front of the shopping center Sarinah, this is also an old cinema with a lot of charm. It is common for directors to schedule their movie premiere in this location. It does not have high technology, but the seats are spacious and really comfortable. Prices are low, starting Rp25,000.

3 comments to '' 6 Best Cinemas for Watching Movies in Jakarta "

  1. want to try this? you know, for fun :)))

    1. Haha I had no idea this existed... As soon as I'm back to Jakarta in September I'll go there and write an article... Thanks for the link...

  2. The Velvet Class cinema in Palembang has closed down... They were afraid young people would kiss inside it....