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As we settle into the Academy Awards season, people are talking about the biggest and newest films, from "American Hustle" to "The Wolf of Wall Street."

But dedicated followers of the cinematic arts also favor smaller independent films and classic movies from the past.

In addition, they'll go to see big-screen broadcasts of live stage plays, concerts, ballets and operas performed as far away as London or Moscow, but available at movie theaters close to home.

Sonoma County has plenty of screen space for the blockbusters and Oscar contenders, but there's also room for art films and other offbeat big-picture pleasures.

And better yet, many of the screenings are priced well below regularfirst-run film tickets.

To prove the point, here are selected samples from the current crop scheduled for local screens.

Tonight -#8212; The latest independent film from director John Sayles, known for "Return of the Secaucus 7" and "Matewan," is "Go for Sisters," starring Yolonda Ross and LisaGay Hamilton as childhood friends reunited by chance. The Sonoma Film Institute screening starts at 7 p.m., with a repeat showing at 4 p.m. Sunday. Warren Auditorium, Ives Hall, in the Sonoma State University campus, 1801 E. Cotati Ave., Rohnert Park. $5-$7. 664-2606, sonoma.edu/sfi.

Sunday -#8212; Summerfield Cinemas in Santa Rosa screens the 2012 Italian drama "Caesar Must Die" at 4 p.m., in a fundraiser for the North Bay Italian Cultural Foundation. $10. 551 Summerfield Road. $10. 591-9696, nbicf.org.

Wednesday -#8212; The Petaluma Film Alliance Cinema Series will screen director Francois Truffaut's 1973 French classic, "Day for Night" at 7 p.m., following a 6 p.m. lecture, in the Carole L. Ellis Auditorium on the Petaluma campus of the Santa Rosa Junior College, 680 Sonoma Mountain Parkway. A discussion will follow the film. $4-$5. petalumafilmalliance.org.

Thursday -#8212; The hero of ancient Rome, played by Tom Hiddleston (Loki in "The Avengers"), faces foes from afar and within in William Shakespeare's "Coriolanus," in a National Theater Live broadcast from London at 7 p.m. Encore showing at 10 a.m. Feb. 1. $16-$23. Rialto Cinemas, 6868 McKinley St., Sebastopol. 525-4840, rialtocinemas.com.

Feb. 2 -#8212; Summerfield Cinemas screens the ballet "Jewels," choreographed by George Ballanchine and performed live at the Bolhsoi Theatre in Moscow, at 1 p.m. Encore at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 4. $14-$18. 522-0719, summerfieldcinemas.com.

Feb. 6 -#8212; "The Rolling Stones: Sweet Summer Fun" captures the band's live show last summer in London's Hyde Park, attended by 100,000 fans. One show only at 7 p.m. at Summerfield Cinemas. For ticket information: 522-0719, summerfieldcinemas.com.

Feb. 7 -#8212; The Sonoma Film Institute presents "Chasing Shakespeare," an independent film starring Danny Glover and Tantoo Cardinal as lovers in rural Arkansas, at 7 p.m. in Warren Auditorium, Ives Hall, on the Sonoma State University campus. The program repeats at 4 p.m. Feb. 9. $5-$7. 664-2606, sonoma.edu/sfi.

Feb. 8 -#8212; The "Metropolitan Live in HD" series presents composer Anton? Dvorak's opera "Rusalka," starring famed American soprano Renee Fleming, at 10 a.m. Encore presentations at 1 and 7 p.m. Feb. 13. $16-$23. Rialto Cinemas.

Feb. 12 -#8212; The Rialto's "Community Cinema" series screens the documentary "The Trial of Muhammad Ali" at 7 p.m., followed by a live discusssion. Free.

A closing note: Fans of classic films should check out the Vintage Film Series at Sonoma's Sebastiani Theatre. Visit sebastianitheatre.com online, or call 996-9756.

You can reach Staff Writer Dan Taylor at 521-5243 or dan.taylor@pressdemocrat.com. See his ARTS blog at http://arts.blogs.pressdemocrat.com.

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