Apple Cinemas Remains a Beloved Neighborhood Spot

Esther Fu and Dania Rustom

The Fresh Pond Shopping Center Apple Cinemas, notable for its small, welcoming community and scarlet red reclining seats, is one of the most well-known cinemas among Cambridge locals. Located in the Fresh Pond Mall, the business has accumulated 1,844 Google Reviews and a 4.1-star rating since its establishment in 2013. Prior to this, most Cambridge residents grew up knowing the cinema as FreshPond Cinemas. Apple Cinemas appeals to many due to its friendly staff and frequent discounts on ticket prices, such as on “Student Wednesdays,” when the cinema charges students $4.75 for a movie ticket. As such, the business is certainly well-liked, but its popularity stems from the sentimental value that many hold regarding the family-friendly cinema.

My first movie was there with my dad, which is probably my best memory.”

Many long-time Cambridge residents consider Apple Cinemas an essential part of their childhood. CRLS math teacher Mr. Joshua Nolan reminisced about his childhood at the cinema to the Register Forum, stating in an in-person interview, “My best friend and I would always go to Apple Cinemas when we were younger. He has since passed on, but we have a lot of memories there and I went to a lot of movies with him there. It’s a very special place to me.” 

Senior Krish Dhanda also recalled his experiences at this cinema. He recounted to the Register Forum, “[Apple Cinemas] holds significance to me because it was the cinema I used to go to a lot as a kid and many major movies I’ve seen have been at Apple Cinemas. My first movie was there with my dad, which is probably my best memory.” 

While Apple Cinemas is loved by many, it is said to lack a level of professionalism that is present in other local cinemas. Elias Seidman ’24 offered his perspective on the quality of the theater. He explained to the Register Forum, “Since the last time I remember being there, I think they could be a bit better with security. I think people sneak into movies there all of the time. This isn’t really a problem for me, but for their reputation and their own benefit, they could have more professional security.” This absence of austere management is certainly not overlooked by frequent visitors; in fact, it could contribute to its popularity by the local student community. 

Through the COVID-19 pandemic, the beloved cinema continues to induce positive and nostalgic memories for its customers. However, the business struggled when it was forced to close down during the height of the pandemic. The cinema finally reopened in the beginning of September 2021 and is currently operating at normal hours, according to their website. Although business is relatively slow, especially due to being understaffed, Apple Cinemas still attracts many students. 

Even though going to the cinemas may not be as captivating as it was before, specifically due to the abundance of online streaming services today, Apple Cinemas remains a popular option for many. The struggles brought on by the pandemic have not erased the sentimental value associated with the cinema, but instead, students have only appreciated it more.

This piece also appears in our February 2022 print edition.