Best Picture Nominees at Local Theaters, Happy Hour at the Armory and Other Weekend To-dos

silver linings playbook oscars movies
(from left) Bradley Cooper, Jacki Weaver and Robert De Niro star in Silver Linings Playbook, a surprising "romantic-dramedy" we definitely recommend

Subscribe to the weekly Must List e-newsletter.

See the Best Picture Nominees Before Oscar Night
Watching the Academy Awards show (February 24; 4 p.m. PST on ABC) is always more fun if you’ve seen the nominees beforehand—and you haven’t, there’s still time! Showing at local theaters this weekend are our top three picks: the fantastical Beasts of the Southern Wild; the unexpectedly real rom-com Silver Linings Playbook and the unsettling but fascinating Zero Dark Thirty. Click through for details on what’s showing near you...

Amour @ The Egyptian (Capitol Hill)
Argo @ Varsity (U District)
Beasts of the Southern Wild @ Regal Meridian 16 (Downtown)
Django Unchained @ Thornton Place (Northgate)
Les Mis @ Regal Meridian 16 (Downtown)
Life of Pi @ Pacific Place (Downtown)
Lincoln @ Landmark Guild 45th (Wallingford)
Silver Linings Playbook @ SIFF Uptown (Queen Anne)
Zero Dark Thirty @ iPic in Redmond (Eastside)

(The above are suggested theaters; Check local listings for additional locations)

Happy Hour at The Armory
Thursday (2/21) — Tonight, Seattle Center launches a monthly happening in its revitalized Armory. Every third Thursday, resident vendors (including Bean Sprouts Café & Cooking School, MOD Pizza, Pie, Skillet Counter and others) will offer a range of small bites and grownup beverages for $5 and under. While enjoying affordable noshes, guests can play board games, master mini golf or enter for a chance to win prizes, including a KeyArena suite for an upcoming Rat City Rollergirls bout. If you’re headed to a theater show in the area, this makes for a tasty (and cheap!) way and grab a bite beforehand..
Third Thursdays, starting Feb 21. 5 p.m.–8 p.m.  No cover charge. 21+ only. Ground floor of The Armory at Seattle Center. Discount parking at 5th Ave. N and Harrison St. garage with Happy Hour validation;

Photograph 51
Ongoing (2/1–3/10) — Women at King’s College London were forbidden to eat in the men’s plush dining room—including Rosalind Franklin, a brilliant scientist on staff. In Photograph 51, playwright Anna Ziegler tells the story of Franklin’s contributions to the discovery of the DNA double helix and wonders why Franklin has been largely left out of the credits. Directed by local favorite Braden Abraham, this richly drawn portrait both raises feminist questions and acknowledges that the answers are hardly black and white.
2/1–3/10. Times and prices vary. Seattle Repertory Theatre, 155 Mercer St.; 206.443.2222;

Ruby Room Dress Drive
Sunday (Feb 24) — Unless you’ve got other plans for that worn-once, too-small dress lingering in the back of your closet, consider giving it a second chance to see the light of day—or the light of a disco ball. Capitol Hill’s Ruby Room is holding a dress drive for low-income and foster teens in need of formal wear. Your donation could make a young girl’s Pretty in Pink dream come true.
2/24. 11 a.m.–1 p.m. 1634 11th Ave.;

A Triple Play at Frye Art Museum
Ongoing (2/9–4/28) — The bad news is that it’s supposed to rain a lot this weekend. The good news? There’s a new “triple play” exhibit at the Frye that simultaneously explores works by contemporary local artists, the Russian master painter Nicolai Fechin (that's his work below), the permanent collection of the Frye and how the poems of James Joyce connect them all. There are so many wonderful images and ideas to ponder, you won’t even miss the sun. Read online editor Bond Huberman's review of the show.
2/9–4/28. Times vary. Free admission. Frye Art Museum, 704 Terry Ave.; 206.622.9250;