Oscar fever

Crest Theatre

1013 K St.
Sacramento, CA 95814

(916) 476-3356

For the month of February, you can catch a number of Oscar-nominated films at the landmark downtown theater, including The Illusionist, Blue Valentine and Biutiful. Co-presented by the Sacramento Film & Music Festival, the Crest Theatre will also be screening the 15 Oscar-nominated shorts. There are five films in three categories: live action, short subject and animated.

One of the highlights is the live action short Wish 143, in which a 15-year-old dying of a cancerous tumor wishes not for Disneyland or to meet his favorite soccer player, but a naked girl to have sex with. In a short 23 minutes, David’s tragic yet comic story unfolds as he learns that sex cannot replace love, and what he truly wants and needs is a good hug. The somber subject is aided by dry humor and British wit.

There are also five even shorter films, like the international film The Warriors of Qiugang. The documentary shows how a community in Qiugang, China, comes together to fight against a chemical company’s polluting factory. It’s a reflection of a decades-long struggle with China’s economic reform.

On the lighter side, there are five animated shorts, several of which are based on books. These include The Gruffalo, which is written by an English writer, and The Lost Thing, by Australian author Shaun Tan. The Gruffalo is the charming story of how a mouse outsmarts the Gruffalo, the scariest animal in the forest. The Lost Thing follows a kid who discovers a strange creature that no one seems cares for, and the two develop a liking for each other.

The shorts run Friday, February 11 through Thursday, February 17. Tickets cost $9.50 or $6 for students, seniors and matinee showings. Crest Theatre, 1013 K Street, www.thecrest.com.