9 Cheap and Free Things to Do In L.A. This Week

Mitch Silpa and Edi Patterson make love (and laughs) on Tuesday.
Mitch Silpa and Edi Patterson make love (and laughs) on Tuesday.
Courtesy T. Chick McClure

Comedy, vegan comedy, psychic comedy and more fun stuff to see and do in L.A. this week for $10 or less.

L.A. has all kinds of vegan events — even vegan comedy. Kate Berlant, Zach Sherwin and Andrew Michaan host what's perhaps the first and only Los Angeles Vegan Comedy Festival, featuring Jake Weisman, Allie Goertz, Andree Vermeulen and other animal-loving comedians who prove that vegans do have a sense of humor. No pretentiousness, preaching or converting, just a bunch of funny folks with strict dietary restrictions (and maybe "one token nonvegan") who'll perform stand-up and sketches and fight against the real enemy: raw-food zealots. UCB Franklin, 5919 Franklin Ave., Hollywood Hills; Sat., May 21, 10 p.m.; $10. (323) 908-8702, franklin.ucbtheatre.com. —Siran Babayan

The undead take to the stage in Scaldead, a "dance horror" that's the latest from choreographer Alex Floyd, whose prior horror-themed works included Lunatick, the bedbug-inspired Intrinsick and the almost benign My Worst Enemy. Floyd gets help from OdDancity dancers Timothy Marquis Johnson, Kistina Pressler and Angela Todaro to explore human instability and the borderlands between conscious and subconscious, between being alive and not so much so. Aaron Dilloway supplies the score and Dan Reynolds' artwork contributes to the moody explorations. Pieter, 420 W. Ave. 33, Lincoln Heights; Sat.-Sun., May 21-22, 8 p.m.; $10-$12. pieterpasd.com/events/scaldead-a-dance-horror-performed-by-oddancity. —Ann Haskins

L.A. OLA closes out the weekend at Los Angeles Filmforum after showcasing highlights of Spain's independent film scene all over the city. The festivities begin at 4 p.m. with an industry panel geared toward indie filmmakers trying to sell and market their work, followed by Keina Espiñeira's short film We All Love the Seashore and Mauro Herce's feature-length Dead Slow Ahead. Hailed as a "slow epic" and giving the impression of a less industrial LeviathanDead Slow Ahead tracks a freighter as it slowly makes its way from Ukraine to New Orleans. Herce plays with time and sound to the point of abstraction, using the ship as an all-encompassing sensory environment that requires viewers to find their sea legs. Spielberg Theatre at the Egyptian, 6712 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood; Sun., May 22, 7:30 p.m.; $10. (323) 466-3456, lafilmforum.org—Michael Nordine

Did you know that your taste in music can predict something about your future? Wearing a black turtleneck, Birkenstocks and a cheap platinum wig, Hollywood psychic and radio personality Dr. Lars Dingman, iTunes Psychic, predicts the future and discusses the past lives of audience members in comedy clubs by looking at the last three songs on their digital music players. Tonight Dingman will not only perform psychic readings but also promises a lucky winner a free vacation to Cancun. Though he won't reveal his true identity, Dingman is the alter ego of Emmy-winning comedian, voice actor and TV host Mark DeCarlo, which means all the above is likely bullshit. UCB Sunset, 5419 W. Sunset Blvd., Hollywood; Mon., May 23, 7 p.m.; $5. (323) 908-8702, sunset.ucbtheatre.com. —Siran Babayan

Rebecca Razo proves that even in L.A., silence is golden. Razo reads from Quiet Los Angeles, her new guidebook for Angelenos looking for quiet in all this chaos. A former LAPD officer, the author lists 120 of the most noise-free spots for loners from Topanga Canyon to Venice to Long Beach, including museums, libraries, bookstores, parks, places of worship, scenic drives, restaurants, hotels and even staircases. The book features oft-visited attractions such as the Huntington Library, Griffith Park, Los Angeles Central Library and Hollywood Forever Cemetery, as well as lesser-known ones like St. Sophia Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Pico Union, the REDCAT Lounge downtown and the Korean Bell of Friendship and Bell Pavilion in San Pedro. Book Soup, 8818 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood; Tue., May 24, 7 p.m.; free, book is $19.95. (310) 659-3110, booksoup.com. —Siran Babayan

Professional couple Mitch Silpa and Edi Patterson make sexy time — improvisationally speaking — in Mitch & Edi Making Love. Familiar character actor Silpa has appeared in Bridesmaids, Gilmore Girls and Desperate Housewives, while Patterson's TV credits include Black-ish and Partners. They're both longtime members of the Groundlings' main company. Since 2011, Silpa and Patterson have hosted this two-person improv show, in which they take several audience suggestions and run wild, inhabiting as many as 15 characters at a time. The Groundlings Theater, 7307 Melrose Ave., Hollywood; Tue., May 24, 8 p.m.; $10. (323) 934-4747, groundlings.com. —Siran Babayan

You know that out-of-context scene you've seen a million times, the one where a man and a woman are locked in a passionate kiss on the beach as a wave crashes ashore? There's an entire movie around it, and it's well worth your time: From Here to Eternity. Fred Zinnemann's World War II drama — set on Hawaii and starring Burt Lancaster, Deborah Kerr, Montgomery Clift, Frank Sinatra and Donna Reed — centers around romantic and pugilistic affairs on a military base before using a certain date that will live in infamy as a world-shattering climax. Its list of Oscars is just as impressive as The Silence of the Lambs': Best Picture, Director, Adapted Screenplay, Supporting Actor for Sinatra and Supporting Actress for Reed. LACMA, 5905 Wilshire Blvd., Mid-Wilshire; Tue., May 24, 1 p.m.; $5. (323) 857-6000, lacma.org—Michael Nordine

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Midweek genre fare at the New Beverly, Continental style: Silvio Amadio's Amuck and Vicente Aranda's The Blood Spattered Bride. The latter, based on Joseph Sheridan le Fanu's vampire story Carmilla, became an underground favorite in its native Spain and abroad for the manner in which it weaves progressive views on sexuality and gender into its brutal, anti-fascist narrative; you may also recognize its title as the inspiration for Uma Thurman's nickname in Kill Bill. No Oscars for either of these, though Bride's poster does proudly inform potential viewers that it won the 1973 Vampire Award for Best Thriller of the Year. New Beverly Cinema, 7165 Beverly Blvd., Fairfax; Tue., May 24, 7:30 p.m.; $8. (323) 938-4038, thenewbev.com. —Michael Nordine

Despite the question mark at the end of Will Genetic Engineering Endanger Humanity?, don't bet on having a definitive answer when you leave this talk at the Skirball Center. The point is to start the conversation, and tonight's appearance by Pulitzer Prize–winning author Siddhartha Mukherjee is as good a starting point as any on a heavy subject that touches everything from test-tube babies to designer diseases. Mukherjee's premise, outlined in his new book, The Gene: An Intimate History, is that the manipulation of genes has mutated into a method by which humans can play God — and all the Promethean problems that implies. Skirball Cultural Center, 2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd. (enter at Herscher Way), Brentwood; Wed., May 25, 8 p.m.; free with RSVP. (310) 440-4500, zocalopublicsquare.org/event/will-genetic-engineering-endanger-humanity. —David Cotner

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