Thrills for the week

July 14
Reubens sandwich: Remember when dirty old man Paul Reubens was still the innocent human confection known as Pee-wee Herman? His silver-screen debut, Pee-wee's Big Adventure, directed in properly idiosyncratic form by Tim Burton, who went on to craft such cinematic quirks as Edward Scissorhands, The Nightmare Before Christmas and Batman, will be shown tonight at 7 and 9:30 in the comfy, cushy Bluebird Theater, 3317 E. Colfax, one of the only places in town where you can quaff a microbrew while munching your popcorn. Admission is only three bucks; call 322-2308.

July 15
Snider comments: This guy got our attention with his "Talkin' Seattle Grunge Rock Blues," a Dylanesque talking blues that good-naturedly ripped plaid flannel shirts to shreds on his first CD, Songs for the Daily Planet. Now Todd Snider, who looks like a California surfer dude but plays music that's closer in tone to Jerry Jeff Walker's tasty, rowdy country rock circa Viva Terlingua, is touring in support of a follow-up album, Step Right Up, that seems to continue in the right direction. The enthusiastic, unstudied Snider, along with his band, the Nervous Wrecks (featuring the delectable picking of guitarist Will Kimbrough), co-headline a show with the Gibb Droll Band tonight at 9 at the Fox Theatre, 1135 13th St., Boulder. For tickets, $6.30, call 447-0095 or 830-TIXS.

July 16
In flower: It's time you made a visit to the Colorado Music Festival, musical director Giora Bernstein's world-class classical series housed each summer at the Chautauqua Auditorium, 900 Baseline Rd., Boulder. Tonight at 8, the Amaryllis Quartet--a stunning all-woman string ensemble--performs works by Mendelssohn, Turina and Shostakovich as part of the ongoing Tuesday night chamber series. The young women in the group, Fischoff Competition winners who've also performed with cellist Yo Yo Ma, have yet to finish high school. Now's when to see them--tickets range in price from $6 to $27; call 449-1397.

July 17
Frankly speaking: The Bug Performance and Media Art Center, 3654 Navajo St., is hosting Jean Renoir in July, a lovely screen tribute to the works of the son of French impressionist Auguste Renoir. A master of both the human storytelling plane and the black-and-white cinematic palette of filmmaking, Jean Renoir is considered one of the century's finest film directors. Tonight at 7:30, see a pair of Renoir's early silent pieces, Catherine/A Life Without Joy and Charleston; the series continues next Wednesday with the slapstick comedy Tire-Au-Flanc, also silent, and concludes July 31 with Grand Illusion, the tour de force about World War I for which Renoir is perhaps best known. Admission is $5 ($3 Bug members); call 477-5977.

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