20 Best Things to Do in L.A. This Week
The joke's on misogyny at the Funny Women Festival, beginning on Wednesday.
Courtesy iO West for Funny Women Fest
A Black Friday market in Boyle Heights, a fest for lady comedians, a Christmas parade in East L.A. and lots more to do post-Thanksgiving.
"Shop local" is a common refrain this time of year, but now that an evil billionaire is president, it feels more important than ever to stick it to his CEO buddies by putting our money where our mouths are. Shopping goes hyper-local at ¡AyE! Boyle Heights: Alternative to Black Friday Marketplace, Leadership for Urban Renewal Network's art and crafts market for local makers and artists. The impressive roster of vendors offers everything from jewelry and leather goods to nail decals and hand-sewn plush dolls to elotes to snack on. Stretch your holiday shopping dollars and feel good about whose pockets they ended up in. City Labs Boyle Heights, 553 S. Clarence St., Boyle Heights; Fri., Nov. 25, noon-4 p.m.; free with RSVP. ayeboyleheights.splashthat.com. —Gwynedd Stuart
Return to those chortlesome days of yesteryear at the Laurel & Hardy Festival, screening some of the comic duo's best short films, both silent and sound. Many of these shorts were shot right here in Southern California — everywhere from Echo Park to Cheviot Hills to Highland Park — and the decades-strong enthusiasm in keeping Stan and Ollie topmost in the comedy pantheon is thanks directly to the support of venues like the Music Hall. As always, each show starts with a selection of American popular favorites played on the Mighty Wurlitzer, accompanied by a faintly mortifying audience sing-along. Old Town Music Hall, 140 Richmond St., El Segundo; Fri., Nov. 25, 8:15 p.m.; Sat., Nov. 26, 2:30 & 8:15 p.m.; Sun., Nov. 27, 2:30 p.m.; $10, $8 seniors. (310) 322-2592, oldtownmusichall.org/films.html. —David Cotner
If you're done giving thanks for our country — or what's left of it, at least — and have some mashed potatoes to spare, consider partaking in Cinefamily's Delicatessen post-Thanksgiving leftovers potluck. Marc Caro and Jean-Pierre Jeunet's film may not be appetizing in and of itself, what with the postapocalyptic vibe and evil butcher whose choice cuts are all of the human variety, but with the way things appear to be headed it may be wise to be ahead of the cannibalistic curve. Cinefamily/Silent Movie Theatre, 611 N. Fairfax Ave., Fairfax; Fri., Nov. 25, 8 p.m.; $12. (323) 655-2510, cinefamily.org. —Michael Nordine
There is, of course, a remake of The Crow in the works, which means you've only so much time to take a mental snapshot of the original before the new version alters your perception of it. You can do so at the Nuart, where the film that has become a sort of living tribute to star Brandon Lee (who famously died during production when a gun that was supposed to be loaded with blanks fired a live round) screens on 35mm. Though hardly an upbeat enterprise, The Crow offers its own noirish sense of optimism by reminding us that "buildings burn, people die, but real love is forever." Nuart Theatre, 11272 Santa Monica Blvd., West L.A.; Fri., Nov. 25, 11:59 p.m.; $11. (310) 473-8530, landmarktheatres.com. —Michael Nordine
If you're looking for some post-election-and-Thanksgiving commiserating, the Hammer Museum invites you to Women's Center for Creative Work: Thank You for This Community — A Dinner at the Hammer. The Frogtown-based feminist nonprofit hosts programs, performances and workshops for fellow creative and professional females, everything from yoga to theater to auto shop classes, as well as a feminist library. For tonight's gathering, the collective's founders and members invite nine other local projects and organizations — Sewing Rebellion, Everything Is Medicine, Thank You for Coming, Decolonize L.A., Las Fotos Project, Project Q, Mujeres de Maiz, Honey Power and Craftswoman House — each of which takes charge of some aspect of the meal, whether it's the food, decorations or entertainment. More than just breaking bread, the evening is also a discussion on "our individual communities and the layering of them to create a larger feminist and creative community in Los Angeles." Hammer Museum, 10899 Wilshire Blvd., Westwood; Sat., Nov. 26, 2-5 p.m.; free, RSVP required. (310) 443-7000, hammer.ucla.edu/programs-events. —Siran Babayan
J.K. Rowling is credited with being one of the most creative minds in modern literature — but she never managed to come up with a Small Business Saturday event that would benefit the independent merchants of Diagon Alley, did she? The day after Black Friday, Geeky Teas & Games in Burbank hosts the Diagon Alley–Style Small Business Saturday, a market for people who wish they were wizards. Attendees — who are encouraged to wear their school uniforms — can browse Potter-themed wares by local crafters, and then hang out for Potter trivia and a sandwich from the Grilled Cheese Truck. Let the muggles have the mall. Geeky Teas & Games, 2120 W. Magnolia Blvd., Burbank; Sat., Nov. 26, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; free. facebook.com/events/1118559618238869. —Gwynedd Stuart
Actor Stephen Kramer Glickman, visually self-described as "Kingpin from Daredevil crossed with Grumpy Cat" yet surprisingly affable, co-starred for five years on Nickelodeon's Big Time Rush and voiced Pigeon Toady in the animated feature Storks. Nonetheless, stand-up remains his true love, the craft from which he created The Night Time Show, a monthly extravaganza delivering guest stand-ups, nontraditional acts, an offbeat backing band, interstitial videos, audience contest giveaways and Glickman, seated behind a desk, conducting interviews. This month's show features Brody Stevens, Quincy Jones, Jimmy O. Yang and other heavy hitters, a karate demonstration and free Fireball shots. Hollywood Improv, 8162 Melrose Ave., Hollywood; Sat., Nov. 26, 10 p.m.; $10. (323) 651-2583, hollywood.improv.com. —Adam Gropman
John Cassavetes is better remembered for his work behind the camera than he is for what he did in front of it — he mostly took acting gigs as a means of financing his independent productions — and the New Beverly is offering a chance to see both. First up is Gloria, quite possibly the most accessible film Cassavetes ever directed, followed by Machine Gun McCain. The former stars his wife and frequent collaborator Gena Rowlands (who earned an Oscar nomination) as a woman on the run from the mob; the latter also concerns organized crime, with Cassavetes as a recently released prisoner who quickly gets back to his old ways. New Beverly Cinema, 7165 Beverly Blvd., Fairfax; Sat., Nov. 26, 7 p.m.; $8. (323) 938-4038, thenewbev.com. —Michael Nordine
It would be forgivable if, as an Angeleno, you've never actually sung in the rain. Passing up a chance to see Singin' in the Rain on 35mm, however, is a much more serious offense. While it's true that musicals aren't for everybody (including, for what it's worth, this writer), Gene Kelly and Stanley Donen's is an all-timer that transcends genre and demands to be seen on the big screen. If said screen happens to be part of a historic movie theater that's as much a Hollywood institution as the film itself, all the better. Egyptian Theatre, 6712 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood; Sat., Nov. 26, 7:30 p.m.; $11. (323) 466-3456, americancinemathequecalendar.com. —Michael Nordine
A new member joins the clan in Addams Family Values, which marks Cinespia's return to the Palace Theatre. Though not the kind of fare one tends to associate with 105-year-old movie palaces, the film is, like its glorious venue, a reminder of a bygone era — and, in times like these, nostalgia might be the purest form of escapism. The morbid proceedings will, of course, be complemented by a DJ and themed photo booth, so get your pigtails and lightbulbs ready. Palace Theatre, 630 S. Broadway, downtown; Sat., Nov. 26, 9 p.m. (doors at 7:30); $20–$45. (213) 553-4567, cinespia.org. —Michael Nordine
Grab your earbuds for the Silent Night Skate Party at the Pershing Square Ice Rink on Thursday.
Courtesy Holiday Ice Rink Pershing Square
It's not beginning to look at all like Christmas on the streets of L.A., but for a little while, Whittier Boulevard in East Los Angeles will be decidedly more seasonal. The East Los Angeles Christmas Parade, one of the longest-running Christmas parades for the Latino community, has returned to march down Whittier from Eastern Avenue to Goodrich Boulevard, bringing the classic assortment of parade participants, like marching bands, floats, car clubs and maybe even the odd celebrity. After the parade, expect a holiday festival with music, food and more. Whittier Blvd., East Los Angeles; Sun., Nov. 27, noon-5 p.m.; free. elachristmasparade.com. —Gwynedd Stuart
Nobody's perfect, but some movies come close. Some Like It Hot is one of them, a lively comedy from the masterful Billy Wilder whose lighthearted setup belies its staying power. And if you weren't aware that Marilyn Monroe's bombshell status was owed at least in part to some serious comedic chops, make haste to the Aero and see what you've been missing. Aero Theatre, 1328 Montana Ave., Santa Monica; Sun., Nov. 27, 7:30 p.m.; $11. (323) 466-3456, americancinemathequecalendar.com. —Michael Nordine
While New York City may have the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree, Los Angeles has its own holiday tree-lighting tradition at the Music Center Plaza. This year, the official L.A. County Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony features Christmas music from the versatile five-piece ensemble Brass Pacifica, as well as melodies from the Antelope Valley Master Chorale. And, as if the dazzling lights and dizzying tunes weren't enough, this free event further warms the cockles of our cold, dead hearts with free hot chocolate for everyone. Music Center Plaza, 135 N. Grand Ave., downtown; Mon., Nov. 28, 5 p.m.; free. (213) 972-7211, musiccenter.org/events/special-events/la-county-tree-lighting. —Tanja M. Laden
Octavia E. Butler was the foremost female African-American science-fiction writer; her dozen novels earned two Hugo Awards as well as making her the first sci-fi writer to receive a MacArthur "genius" grant. Butler's science fiction was disquietingly mind-expanding stuff, with African-American characters who search otherworldly dimensions for insights into Earthbound matters of race, power and the true nature of humanity. Let It Be Known: Short Films Inspired by Octavia E. Butler is a program of experimental films by artists including Jamilah Sabur, Lauren Kelley, Buki Bodunrin, Ezra Claytan Daniels, Suné Woods, Ariel Jackson and Wura-Natasha Ogunji. REDCAT, 631 W. Second St., downtown; Mon., Nov. 28, 8:30 p.m.; $11, $8 students & members, $6 CalArts students/faculty/staff. (213) 237-2800, redcat.org. —John Payne
The Do Good Bus is a restored 1976 Crown Coach that takes riders on community-minded expeditions throughout Los Angeles in order to effect change. The exact nature of the specific trip usually is under wraps in order to add an element of mystery and encourage open-mindedness, but past excursions have addressed homelessness, at-risk youth, animal welfare and disaster relief. In an effort to balance out the consumer-oriented Black Friday and Cyber Monday customs, GivingTuesday Do Good Bus invites guests to take part in a new tradition that focuses on giving back, hopefully setting an altruistic tone for the rest of the holiday season. Metro Expo Line, Culver City Station Park & Ride, 8817 W. Washington Blvd., Culver City; Tue., Nov. 29, 9:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.; $45 (includes lunch). (310) 853-8355, dogoodbus.com/ride-with-us-2/public-rides. —Tanja M. Laden
Wes Anderson has penned more than his fair share of memorable lines over the last two decades, few of which cut to the core like this one from Moonrise Kingdom: "I love you, but you don't know what you're talking about." This tale of young love, the kind that reacts to and rebels against the adult world around it, manages to feel both beautifully rose-tinted and painfully realistic. ArcLight Hollywood, 6360 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood; Tue., Nov. 29, 8:15 p.m.; $15.75. (323) 464-1478, arclightcinemas.com. —Michael Nordine
Against Me!'s Laura Jane Grace discusses her autobiography on Wednesday.
Donald Trump is president-elect, but the third annual Funny Women Festival is harnessing the power of 600-plus female comedians to prove the joke's on misogyny. Organized by Lauren Frost and Erin Miller Williams of sketch group Cake Batter, the four-day festival stages stand-up, improv, sketches, musical comedy, storytelling, film and video screenings by both emerging and veteran performers — some with names like The Boobé Sisters, The Pippa Middletons and Size Matters — as well as industry panels meant not just for up-and-coming comedians but for all female artists. Past performers have included Mary Lynn Rajskub, Wendi McLendon-Covey, The Office's Angela Kinsey and Kate Flannery, Grey's Anatomy's Kate Walsh and Frangela. Following last year's event at iO West, this year's shows will take over a good chunk of Highland Park at venues including the Hi Hat, Sonny's Hideaway and Highland Theater. A portion of the proceeds benefit the Downtown Women's Center, a nonprofit that provides services to homeless women. The Hi Hat, 5043 York Blvd., Highland Park; Wed., Nov. 30, 8-11 p.m. (also Thu., Dec. 1-Sat., Dec. 3); $10. (818) 917-7242, funnywomenfestla.com. —Siran Babayan
When singer Tom Gabel of the punk band Against Me! announced in 2012 that he was transitioning to life as a woman and adopting a new name, Laura Jane Grace, much of the often-conservative rock establishment supported the vocalist's bold change into a more intrinsically authentic identity. It was only then, however, that Grace realized just how difficult life as a transgender woman would be, as her evolution seriously affected her relationships with friends and family. In an incisive new autobiography, Tranny: Confessions of Punk Rock's Most Infamous Anarchist Sellout, co-written by Dan Ozzi, Grace bravely peels back the layers of her life as a troubled army brat who didn't shy away from her gender dysphoria on her journey to becoming a punk-rock icon. Book Soup presents Grace discussing her book. Renberg Theatre, 1125 N. McCadden Place, Hollywood; Wed., Nov. 30, 7 p.m.; $32.70 (includes a copy of the book). (310) 659-3110, booksoup.com. —Falling James
L.A. is probably one of the few places where it's possible to ice skate in 72-degree weather. Now, the biggest ice rink in the city is adding another perk with a spin on the classical ice-skating tradition. Silent Night Skate Party is a brand-new ice-skating experience that has headphoned skaters moving to the tunes of three different music channels. Onlookers can watch people moving around in silence from the VIP Igloo, while skaters take breaks to pose for pictures in front of L.A. artist Kasey Blaustein's angel-wings mural. Costumes are encouraged, adding yet another fun (albeit surreal) dimension to the whole experience of quietly skating in silence in warm weather. Holiday Ice Rink Pershing Square, 532 S. Olive St., downtown; Thu., Dec. 1, 7-8 p.m. & 8:30-9:30 p.m.; $9 general admission, $4 skate rental. (213) 624-4289, holidayicerinkdowntownla.com/los-angeles-events. —Tanja M. Laden
As part of Central Library's ALOUD lecture series, writer-director David France discusses his new book, How to Survive a Plague: The Inside Story of How Citizens and Science Tamed AIDS, with Dr. Mark H. Katz and writer-activist Tony Valenzuela. France, a contributing editor for New York magazine and former senior editor for Newsweek, covered the outbreak of the disease from the beginning. (He also wrote Our Fathers, about the sex-abuse scandal in the Catholic Church, which was adapted into a 2005, Emmy-nominated Showtime movie.) France's memoir is a companion to his excellent, Oscar-nominated 2012 documentary How to Survive a Plague, which chronicled the founding of ACT UP and TAG (Treatment Action Group) in New York, and how its activists fought not only the government and pharmaceutical companies but a homophobic society to get access to effective drug treatments at the height of the epidemic during the mid-1980s. Los Angeles Central Library, Mark Taper Auditorium, 630 W. Fifth St., downtown; Thu., Dec. 1, 7:15 p.m.; free. (213) 228-7500, lfla.org/calendar/category/aloud. —Siran Babayan
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