Best Laid Plans


  • The Thin Man

Need a break before the holidays hit this weekend? Spend some time with a couple of couples at the Eureka Theater and the Arcata Theatre Lounge. Sure, other theaters have the explosion-riddled blockbusters but the aim here is to reduce stress, not add to it. The lines will be shorter, the crowds less frenetic and the scenes playing out on the screen more nostalgic. That's how to take in a movie during the holidays, right? Plus, booze.

On Thursday, Dec. 22, order a martini (or six to catch up) in the lobby of the elegant Eureka Theater and watch William Powell and Myrna Loy as Nick and Nora Charles, an ex-detective and his socialite wife (and their little dog Asta, too) spend the holidays solving a murder mystery with wit and style in The Thin Man showing at 7:30 p.m. ($5). They're a tad drunk and so might you be. It's like spending time with family so don't feel guilty about stepping out.

Next stop, Arcata. Travel halfway across the country with Steve Martin and John Candy in Planes, Trains and Automobiles playing at the Arcata Theatre Lounge on Friday, Dec. 23 at 8 p.m. ($5). The comedic giants star as Neal and Del, two guys who couldn't be more different, yet are stuck with each other trying to get home for the holidays amid a series of madcap mishaps that play out with hilarity and heart. If you think it's bad when 299 is closed ...

At five bucks a pop, these flicks buy you a nice reprieve from the holiday madness. Go on, give yourself the gift of sanity. Your family will thank you for it.

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