A far cry from the decadent, baroque movie houses on Broadway, the Downtown Independent theatre has a shine, polish and vibe all its own. This alternative theatre space is an alabaster anomaly in an otherwise squalid stretch of gallery row. Its rotating program accommodates everything from stand-up comedy and panel discussions on culturally relevant topics, to film screenings of pieces that have been shunned or neglected elsewhere in the city. However unfocused it may seem, the sleek, intimate space provides a nourishing platform for the esoteric and the underground. Conveniently enough, beer is available to soak it all up.