Dreaming of a white Christmas? You're probably out of luck. But for those whose holiday celebrations traditionally involve a trip to the movies – as well as those who've lost their taste for the TBS network's annual 24-hour A Christmas Story marathon – San Francisco's indie theaters are serving up a seasonal concoction of time-honored Hollywood classics and contemporary Oscar hopefuls. Among them:
1. War Horse
Where: Sundance Kabuki Cinemas, 1881 Post St., 415-929-4650; Balboa Theatre, 3630 Balboa St., 415-221-8184
When: All Week
What better way to celebrate the 12 days of Christmas than with two blood-curdling chillers – The Birds and The Shining – playing this weekend at the Castro? Elsewhere, Paul McCartney: The Love We Make, which follows the onetime Beatle around New York in the wake of the 9/11 attacks, arrives Friday at the Roxie Theater.
1. The Birds
Where: Castro Theatre, 429 Castro St., 415-621-6120
When: Dec. 16
While Pedro Almodóvar celebrates his long-delayed reunion with Antonio Banderas in the twisted new thriller The Skin I Live In, opening this weekend at the Embarcadero, SF IndieFest's 10th Documentary Festival enters its second week at the Roxie Theater, with a mostly all-new lineup of features from some of the world's most daring nonfiction filmmakers. Here's a sampling of the festival's best.
1. Being Elmo: A Puppeteer's Journey
Where: Roxie Theater, 3117 16th St., 415-863-1087