First Position at Ojai Playhouse: Bess Kargman’s eye-opening documentary about a youth ballet competition makes it to a local(ish) big screen thanks to the Ojai Film Society. The film follows a group of young dancers as they train, strain, and push their bodies and minds to athletic excellence. The talents include Aran, a brooding and devoted 11-year-old; bubbly Miko; the self-doubting Rebecca; heroic orphan Michaela; and Joan, a young boy with major aspirations. Beyond the personal struggles and triumphs, First Position showcases some dizzying young talent and calls into question the grueling physicality of professional dance. Kargman will also be on hand for an audience Q&A session following the film. Sunday, September 23, 4:30 p.m. Call 646-8946 or visit ojaifilmsociety.org.
Spartacus at UCSB’s Pollock Theater: While many of us know Spartacus, few of us have had the chance to catch Stanley Kubrick’s 1960 classic on the big screen. Well, this November is your chance. Kirk Douglas stars in the Oscar-winning epic about a slave-turned-warrior who helps lead an uprising against the corrupt Roman Empire. Laurence Olivier plays the evil and greedy Crassus, and the newly built, state-of-the-art Pollock Theater plays host. The film screens as part of UCSB Arts & Lectures’ Kirk Douglas on Film series. Wednesday, November 14, 7 p.m. Call 893-3535 or visit artsandlectures.sa.ucsb.edu.
Flow State at the Lobero Theatre: Between the surfers, the skaters, the paragliders, and the rock climbers, Santa Barbara lays claim to its fair share of extreme-sport nuts. For that very reason, Warren Miller’s films seem to consistently find a happy home here. This December, Miller’s entertainment company celebrates its 63rd output: Flow State, which takes its name from the peace of mind that enthusiasts reach when they “become one with the environment.” The film promises to get up close and personal with some of the world’s most beautiful — and treacherous — peaks. In other words, expect plenty of slow-mo, gravity-defying shots. The locales range from mountains in Norway and Japan to peaks in Utah and Austria, with plenty of skiing, snowboarding, and nail-biting along the way. Olympian Jonny Moseley narrates. Wednesday, December 5, 8 p.m. Call 963-0761 or visit lobero.com.
Magic Mike. At Isla Vista Theater, Monday, October 1.
Detective Story. At UCSB’s Pollock Theater, Monday, October 8.
ReGeneration. At UCSB’s MultiCultural Center, Wednesday, October 10.
Lust for Life. At UCSB’s Pollock Theater, Monday, October 22.
California Indian. At UCSB’s MultiCultural Center, Wednesday, October 24.
Rocky Horror Picture Show. At Isla Vista Theater, Friday and Monday, October 26 and 29.
Ojai Film Festival. Various locations, Thursday-Sunday, October 25-28.
The Mosque in Morgantown. At UCSB’s MultiCultural Center, Wednesday, November 7.
ParaNorman. At Isla Vista Theater, Friday, November 9, and Monday, November 12.
The Well Digger’s Daughter. At Ojai Playhouse, Sunday, November 11.
Timon of Athens. At UCSB’s Campbell Hall, Monday, November 19.
Headhunters. At Ojai Playhouse, Sunday, November 25.
Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry. At UCSB’s MultiCultural Center, Wednesday, November 28.
Beasts of the Southern Wild. At Ojai Playhouse, Saturday-Sunday, December 1-2.
Lawless. At Isla Vista Theater, Friday, December 7.