English-language Cinema in Tokyo

Information on where and how to find full listings of what's on at the movies today, and in the near future. Where to find out what's showing in Tokyo...

Many of the cinemas in Tokyo are located in large shopping centres and have multiple theatres showing different movies, and most cinemas are modern and comfortable.

Generally, non-Japanese films are shown in their original language with Japanese subtitles. One big exception to this is animated films which are usually dubbed in Japanese. There are screenings of English-language movies (or with English subtitles) in Tokyo every day at most theatres. It should be noted that the same movie may be shown at the same time, in both the original version and a dubbed version, within the same cinema. It is advisable to check when buying tickets.

Most cinemas have food and beverage outlets on the premises and do not allow customers to bring their own food and drinks. Also, all cinemas request mobile phones to be switched off during the show.

Movie Listings

A full guide to movies on at any time can be found in the print media. The print newspaper, The Japan Times, has a dedicated cinema page which lists all cinemas and the movies that play there.

Cinema listings may indicate how a foreign-language film will be screened in the following ways:

Dubbed (fukikae): represented by one of the following symbols in the movie listing:

  • 吹き替えの
    ふきかえばん
    吹き替え版
    吹替え版
    吹替版

With subtitles (jimaku): represented by one of these symbols in the movie listing:

  • 字幕
    じまく
    字幕版
    じまくばん

Every cinema has its own website where the current showing and forthcoming films are listed. However, most of the websites are in Japanese.

A film's original language and other details can be checked with the Internet Movie Database, a complete film resource with information on the director, actors, reviews and awards.

Cinemas in Tokyo

The cinema chain, Toho, publishes their movie listings in English for its 11 theatres in Tokyo. It is possible to book tickets in advance online.

  • Fuchu: This theatre is located in an entertainment district and has nine screens
    At: Tokyo temple town, Fuchu city, Tokyo
    Tel: 042 358 5001
  • Kinshicho: Large eight screen cinema, located in a shopping mall
    At: 4-1-2 Olinas mall, Taihei, Sumida-ku, Tokyo
    Tel: 03 5637 1040
  • Mediage: This is located in the large entertainment centre, Odaiba Aqua city, and is one of the largest in Tokyo with 13 screens
    At: 1-7-1 Odaiba Aqua City, Minato-ku, Tokyo
    Tel: 03 5531 7878
  • Minami Osawa: Cinema with nine screens showing latest releases
    At: 2-3 fab Minami-Osawa, Hachioji-ku, Tokyo
    Tel: 042 679 6180
  • Nishiarai: Cinema with ten screens with stadium seating
    At: 1-20 Nisharai Sakae town, Adachi-ku, Tokyo
    Tel: 03 5888 104
  • Roppongi Hills: This popular theatre is located in a major shopping centre and has nine screens
    At: Roppongi Hills Complex, 6-10-2 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tokyo
    Tel: 03 5775 6090
  • Shibuya: Theatre in the heart of Shibuya with six screens
    At: 2-6-17 Dogenzaka, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo
    Tel: 03 5489 4210
  • Yurakacho: There are four different buildings located nearby the Yurakacho train station with Toho Cinema theatres.
    At: 1-1-3 Yurakucho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo
    Tel: 03 3591 5358 / 03 3591 5357
  • For a comprehensive list of cinemas in Tokyo, see the Directory: Movies, Cinemas & Films

Film Festivals

Tokyo Film Festival is an annual festival with many events, including open-air screenings and seminars related to the film market. The festival takes place at Roppongi Hills and many halls, theatres and other facilities in Tokyo, usually at the end of October.