9 Cheap and Free Things to Do This Week

"It's Vidal Sassoon," she says. Check out Rosemary's Baby at the New Beverly on Friday.EXPAND
"It's Vidal Sassoon," she says. Check out Rosemary's Baby at the New Beverly on Friday.
William Castle Productions

A screening of Rosemary's Baby, a Lit Crawl through North Hollywood, stand-up with Jamie Kilstein and more to do and see this week for 11 bucks or less.

L.A. is filled with ghosts — and not just of dead movie stars, studio execs and tourists. Learn to search for spooks like a professional at SoCal Ghosts & Where to Find Them. The panel discussion is hosted by Richard Carradine, co-founder of GHOULA (aka Ghost Hunters of Urban Los Angeles) and author of "The Park" After Dark: The Original Unauthorized Guide to the Happiest (Haunted) Place on Earth and Spirits With Spirits: A Guide to the Haunted Bars of Los Angeles. He'll be joined by Planet Paranormal's Brian Clune and Bob Davis, co-authors of their own books including California's Historic Haunts and Ghosts of Queen Mary (which was listed in Time magazine as one of the top 10 haunted places in the world), and North Orange County Paranormal Society's Jim Van Eeckhoutte and Sam Neill, who lead real-life paranormal investigations. Even the Last Bookstore's 100-year-old building is said to be possessed. The Last Bookstore, 453 S. Spring St., downtown; Fri., Oct. 21, 8-9:30 p.m.; free. (213) 488-0599, lastbookstorela.com. —Siran Babayan

Deeply felt and endlessly revered, Spirited Away is to Studio Ghibli what Toy Story is to Pixar. The Nuart celebrates the 15th anniversary of Hayao Miyazaki's Oscar-winning anime by screening it in its original subtitled form at midnight. Still the highest-grossing film ever released in Japan (where its box-office returns even surpassed those of Titanic), the film tells of a 10-year-old girl who moves to the suburbs and finds herself in a fantastical realm of monsters, spirits and witches where humans transform into beasts when the sun goes down. Nuart Theatre, 11272 Santa Monica Blvd., West L.A.; Fri., Oct. 21, 11:59 p.m.; $11. (310) 473-8530, landmarktheatres.com. —Michael Nordine

Second City has helped launch the careers of Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, John Belushi, Stephen Colbert, Tina Fey, Chris Farley and Mike Myers, among other comic legends who aren't white. The famed improv theater isn't resting on its laurels when it comes to tackling diversity in comedy, which is why it's launching the first Los Angeles Diversity in Comedy Festival. Taking place at Second City and the Hollywood Improv, the event turns issues of "race, gender, disability, sexual orientation and gender identity" into a laughing matter with performances by house teams from both clubs and elsewhere, including Afros & Ass Whoopins, Armagayddon, Phi Beta Negro and The Black Version. The weekend-long schedule also offers workshops and panels, such as "Killer Konfidence," "Sketch Comedy Basics" and "The Art of Character," led by industry insiders whose credits include Dreamworks, Nickelodeon and Disney. Second City Studio Theater, 6560 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood; Fri., Oct. 21, 7-10 p.m.; Sat., Oct. 22, noon-11 p.m.; Sun., Oct. 23, 1:30-10:30 p.m.; $10-$25. (323) 464-8542, secondcity.com. —Siran Babayan

You don't watch Rosemary's Baby, you endure it. Roman Polanski's nerve-jangling masterpiece gets under your skin and in your head, calling into question the plausibility of its own narrative — could there really be witches in this old apartment building, and who are those late-night incantations invoking? — as you try to believe that both you and Rosemary (a never-better Mia Farrow) that you're simply imagining things. Also screening on 35mm and completing the New Beverly's double bill is The Mephisto Waltz, which was released three years later and is even more overt in its occult plotting. New Beverly Cinema, 7165 Beverly Blvd., Fairfax; Fri., Oct. 21, 6:30 p.m.; $8. (323) 938-4038, thenewbev.com. —Michael Nordine

The slasher genre was in its death throes before Scream revived it; in hindsight, Wes Craven was probably the only one who could have done so. His self-reflexive riff on the cinematic movement he helped innovate (see: the next item on this list) is genuinely clever and scary, effectively deconstructing the all-too-familiar tropes of slashers even as it indulges in them. (MTV's TV series based on this exercise in meta-horror is surprisingly worthwhile, too.) Electric Dusk Drive-In, 2930 Fletcher Drive, Glassell Park; Sat., Oct. 22, 7:15 p.m. (doors at 6:30); $10 lawn, $14 car, $60 VIP. (818) 653-8591, electricduskdrivein.com. —Michael Nordine

If you ascribe any importance to such things, the fact that Vertigo dethroned Citizen Kane on the most recent Sight & Sound list of the 250 greatest films of all time should at least suggest that Alfred Hitchcock's most celebrated film is worth seeing on the silver screen — especially in 70mm. This is a capital-M movie, the kind that reminds you what's so thrilling and unique in the first place, and essential viewing for anyone and everyone. Aero Theatre, 1328 Montana Ave., Santa Monica; Sun., Oct. 23, 7:30 p.m.; $11. (323) 466-3456, americancinemathequecalendar.com. —Michael Nordine

If you missed Jamie Kilstein at Circle V, the Moby-curated, all-vegan animal rights festival at the Fonda Theater, catch him performing stand-up tonight. Since 2008, the Brooklyn-based political comedian and Allison Kilkenny have co-hosted their podcast Citizen Radio, which has included interviews with the likes of Noam Chomsky, Howard Zinn, Dick Gregory, Ralph Nader, Janeane Garofalo and Paul F. Thompkins. This year, Kilstein even set his rants to music when he and his band The Agenda released A Bit Much, their first album of musical spoken word about Edward Snowden, the NRA, homophobia and Islamophobia. Trepany House at the Steve Allen Theater, 4773 Hollywood Blvd., Los Feliz; Mon., Oct. 24, 8 p.m.; $10. (323) 666-4268, trepanyhouse.org. —Siran Babayan

Upcoming Events

Lit Crawl L.A.'s "literary mayhem" returns for a fourth year at more than 36 restaurants, bars, galleries and other venues in the North Hollywood Arts District. Following an opening program at the Metro North Hollywood Red Line Station Plaza, the schedule offers more than 40 authors and artists doing readings, performances and meet-and-greets, including Matthew Specktor (American Dream Machine), Stephen Elliott (The Adderall Diaries: A Memoir), J. Ryan Stradal (Kitchens of the Great Midwest), Tod Goldberg (Gangsterland, novels based on the TV series Burn Notice), former Los Angeles Times book critic David Ulin and KPCC correspondent Adolfo Guzman-Lopez. The event includes additional programs, such as "Rainbows and Unicorns: L.A. Queers Writing Queerly," "From Vietnam to Operation Iraq" and "Boobs, Vaginas and Brain Tumors," as well as a closing party and speakeasy at the Federal Bar. The NoHo Arts Center, 11136 Magnolia Blvd., North Hollywood; Wed., Oct. 26, 6 p.m.-midnight; free. litcrawl.org. —Siran Babayan

When superstar Mexican singer Juan Gabriel passed away earlier this year at the age of 66, millions of adoring fans mourned with a grief usually reserved for close family members. Affectionately referred to as JuanGa, his ballads and songs of love and loss provided the soundtrack to four decades of weddings, quinceañeras, and countless other special moments. His flamboyant style drew comparisons to Liberace and Elvis, but these fail to capture his singular persona. This Thursday, Amor Eterno: Un Homenaje a Juan Gabriel celebrates his legacy with performances from Stephanie Amaro, Mariachi Garibaldi, Julian Torres, Ballet Folklorico de Los Angeles and others, all in front of a Día de los Muertos altar designed by the Ni Santas Collective. La Plaza de Cultura y Artes, 501 N. Main St., downtown; Thu., Oct. 27, 6:30-10 p.m.; free. (213) 542-6200, lapca.org. —Matt Stromberg


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