Vic Theatre/Brew & View

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Built in 1911, the Vic is a dramatic theater that's just big enough to book prominent national acts, and just small enough to keep the live-music experience personal. A new sound system is intended to ensure that the acoustics are anything but antiquated. When there's no live music, hit the Brew and View. Singular to all of northern Illinois, the Brew and View is the Vic's alter ego, transforming the theater from music to movies. Three bars are open throughout the films, creating a cinematic experience miles away from the strip-mall multiplex. Movies at Brew and View tend to be second- and third-run, as well as cult and underground favorites. The lubricated crowd will often speak along with the dialogue or even dance (go see 'Grease' there). If you want to quietly concentrate on the movie, this is the wrong place. But if you want to see an old or new favorite for five bucks while drinking cheap beer, this is paradise.