The Belcourt Theatre announces its special line-up of holiday happenings including spirited films and live events. The season kicks off Saturday, Dec. 8, at 10 a.m. with a Kids’ Show screening of "The Nightmare Before Christmas." Families and friends seeking to capture the holiday spirit can enjoy a wintry mix of the season’s best films, including family faves "Home Alone" (Dec. 15) and "It's A Wonderful Life" in 35mm (Dec. 21-25) — an annual tradition at the Belcourt — as well as midnight screenings of the rare and retro "Silent Night Deadly Night" (Dec. 21-22).

For an added dose of holiday magic, patrons can enjoy local combo The Ornaments’ special live performance of Vince Guaraldi’s classic soundtrack from “A Charlie Brown Christmas,” Sunday, Dec. 16, at 10 a.m. For those who love to hate the holidays, "Everything Is Terrible!" returns to the Belcourt, Wednesday, Dec. 19, with its holiday performance, “The Cataclysmic Transformation,” featuring an over-the-top, eccentric live show mixed with VHS found footage of holidays past. Details and tickets for all events are available at belcourt.org. Starting the day after Christmas, the Belcourt kicks off its 24-film series, “Alfred Hitchcock: Master of Suspense,” through Jan. 17.

Along with these featured events, tasty seasonal concessions — hot chocolate and winter-themed drink specials — will be available to create an ideal holiday experience. Plus, with the Belcourt’s selection of unusual and thoughtful gift items — from Alfred Hitchcock film series’ ticket packages and film fans’ gift baskets to gift cards and theatre memberships — the Belcourt is a one-stop holiday spot.

“It’s easy to get lost in the holiday rush and not take time to stop and enjoy the spirit of the season,” said Stephanie Silverman, executive director at the Belcourt Theatre. “The simplicity of visiting the Belcourt — settling into a comfortable seat with a little hot chocolate or hot toddy to experience an amazing film — may be all you need to capture the joy and magic of the holidays with family and friends.”

Gift Items at the Belcourt
Both casual film fans and "Hitch" aficionados will appreciate gifted tickets to view the upcoming “Alfred Hitchcock: Master of Suspense” film series, Dec. 26-Jan. 17, 2013. The series opens with "Vertigo" and continues with the iconic director’s suspenseful and much-loved films including "Rear Window," Strangers On A Train," To Catch A Thief," "North By Northwest," "The Birds," "Psycho" and many more. Discounted packages include a six-pack of tickets for $39 ($30 for Belcourt members) or a full series pass for $138 ($115 for Belcourt members). A commemorative limited edition screen print designed by Sam Smith is available for purchase along with the ticket 6-pack — an ideal gift set for Hitchcock fans.

Gift buyers may also consider the popular gift basket, priced at $35 ($30 for Belcourt members), which includes a Belcourt T-shirt, a Belcourt cup (with $1 soda refills), a Belcourt wine opener, movie candy, and a free popcorn and soda coupon. Gift cards and Belcourt memberships can be added to gift baskets.

Holiday Film and Event Schedule
"The Nightmare Before Christmas"
Saturday, Dec. 8, 10 a.m.
A Saturday Kid Shows’ event
Tired of scaring humans every October 31 with the same old bag of tricks, Jack Skellington, the spindly king of Halloween Town, kidnaps Santa Claus and plans to deliver shrunken heads and other ghoulish gifts to children on Christmas morning. Dir. Tim Burton, USA, 1993, 76 min., PG, HD

"Home Alone"
Saturday, Dec. 15, 10 a.m.
A Saturday Kid Shows’ event
Eight-year-old Kevin (Macaulay Culkin) makes the most of the situation after his family unwittingly leaves him behind when they go on vacation. But when a pair of bungling burglars (Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern) set their sights on Kevin’s house, the plucky kid stands ready to defend his territory. By planting booby traps galore, adorably mischievous Kevin stands his ground as his frantic mother (Catherine O’Hara) attempts to race home. Dir. Chris Columbus, USA, 1990, 103 min., PG, HD

Special Performance: The Ornaments Perform “A Charlie Brown Christmas” Soundtrack
Sunday, Dec. 16, 10 a.m.
Admission: $7
The Ornaments began five years ago as a local combo who wanted to play for friends and family the music of Charles Schultz’s “A Charlie Brown Christmas”, composed by Vince Guaraldi. Since then, the much-loved shows have grown into a Nashville holiday institution. Led by pianist Jen Gunderman, accompanied by bassist James Haggerty and drummer Martin Lynds, and featuring guest soloists on various instruments, The Ornaments evoke the childhood feeling of sitting in front of the TV with loved ones on a cold December night, watching Snoopy and the gang.

Special Performance: "Everything Is Terrible!" Holiday Special 2012: “The Cataclysmic Transformation”
Wednesday, Dec. 19, 9:30 p.m.
Admission: $10
Mature content
Everything Is Terrible!, the self-proclaimed psychedelic soldiers of found footage, return with an ‘epic masterpiece.’ Over the last five years, the comedy troupe has built upon its classic Holiday Special, each year creating a more abominable video collage of everyone’s least favorite time of the year. A millennium’s worth of VHS memories of misplaced sentimentalities, fist fights over toys for tots, erotic Santas, Nazi elves, and an endless parade of singing kids will surely destroy us all! Will this holiday season be our last? Will we learn the true meaning of the holidays? EIT! appears live to present the evening’s festivities in all of their fur-covered glory with the tackiest winter wonderland imaginable; puppets, sing-a-longs, candy, fake snow, and a visit from the big man himself! The word ‘miraculous’ falls short to describe the happenings of this Cataclysmic Transformation!

"Silent Night Deadly Night
Friday, Dec. 21, and Saturday, Dec. 22, midnight
Offended parents and others protested this slasher film when it was released in 1984 because it portrays Billy (Robert Brian Wilson) as a toy-store Santa Claus who goes on a rampage and axes people to death while still in his Santa garb. Four sequels prove the adage that there is no such thing as bad publicity. Dir. Charles E. Sellier Jr, USA, 1984, 92 min., R, 35mm

"It's A Wonderful Life"
Friday, Dec. 21. through Tuesday, Dec. 25
Showtimes posted online, www.belcourt.org.
The Belcourt’s annual screening of this classic film presented in 35mm format is a Nashville holiday tradition. The film tells the story of an angel who helps a compassionate but despairingly frustrated businessman by showing him what life would have been like if he never existed. Starring Jimmy Stewart and Donna Reed. Dir. Frank Capra, USA, 1946, 130 min., NR, 35mm
 

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Photo courtesy of Rumble Boxing Gulch Nashville

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