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Forget what F. Scott Fitzgerald said. There are second acts in American life. And the Sundance Sunset Cinema--a pocket-size yet fully loaded movie house that just opened at the site of the shuttered Laemmle Sunset 5--is living, screening proof.

Robert Redford’s company bought the shabby old theater last year and took it down to the studs. Today, the place has audience-friendly features such as plush seats, mini tables and a lounge area with leather sofas from the Sundance Catalog 

There’s even that most-cherished feature that usually draws us to the Arclight: reserved seating, which is handy for nabbing good spots for current offerings like the ribald comedy Bachelorette and the sexy drama Keep the Lights On, as well as the arty documentary Beauty Is Embarrassing, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. (The theater is committed to showing smaller films hard-pressed for venues.) 

We’re also super-excited about the 20 wines and beers that can be enjoyed while watching films, which include a promising Malbec ($7 by the glass or $21 for a bottle) and a favorite Belgian beer ($6). There are also plenty of light bites like a Mediterranean plate ($13), mini pizzas (from $9) and a chicken Caesar salad ($11). 

Date night just got more interesting.

Sundance Sunset Cinema, 8000 W. Sunset Blvd., 323-654-2217 or

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