21 Best Things to Do in L.A. This Week
NKLA Pet Adoption Center is hosting a yoga sesh with feline friends.
A screening of Jodorwsky's bizarre The Holy Mountain, yoga with cats, a Rick and Morty art show, and more fun stuff to do and see in L.A. this week.
To coincide with a run of famed Chilean director Alejandro Jodorowsky's latest film, Endless Poetry, the Nuart is screening his classic works throughout the month of July. Tonight the Westside movie house's midnight presentation is Jodorowsky's 1973 The Holy Mountain. The film is a product of its time, a psychedelic, spiritual trip seemingly made for little more than the love of making art itself. Yet it resonates today as a celebration of all that is bizarre and wonderful, a collection of WTF images ready to be reblogged on Tumblr. It's beautiful, intense and NSFW. Nuart Theatre, 11272 Santa Monica Blvd., Sawtelle; Fri., July 21, 11:59 p.m.; $12; (310) 473-8530, landmarktheatres.com. —Liz Ohanesian
You've probably chuckled along to Overheard L.A., an Instagram account created in 2015 with more than 500,000 followers. It features snippets of typically vapid and pretentious conversations Angelenos have at yoga, coffee shops, the Grove and Trader Joe's. The page features gems such as "Dried mango is the beef jerky of Los Angeles," "I'm not shallow, I'm just visual" and "The first time I did acid, I unfollowed all the Jenners and Kardashians on Instagram." Do we really talk like that? Overheard L.A. at UCB features cast members Beth Appel, Nicole Byer, Devin Field, Ali Ghandour, Connor Ratliff, Carl Tart and others performing improv sets based on those quotes, as well as audience members' overheard L.A.-isms. UCB Sunset, 5419 W. Sunset Blvd., Hollywood; Fri., July 21, 10:30 p.m.; $7. (323) 908-8702, sunset.ucbtheatre.com. —Siran Babayan
Cats are sort of like the yogis of the animal kingdom — they have their own pose and everything. Practice your practice alongside bendy feline friends at ME-OM: Yoga With Adoptable Cats. Certified instructor Stephanie Kang teaches a class while shelter cats enjoy some QT outside of their kitty condos socializing and maybe — just maybe — connecting with the owner of their forever home. Exercise your body — and some empathy. NKLA Pet Adoption Center, 1845 Pontius Ave., Sawtelle; Sat., July 22, 12:30-1:30 p.m.; $20 (waitlist only). facebook.com/NKLA.org. —Gwynedd Stuart
On April Fools' Day, Adult Swim premiered season three of Rick and Morty, the sci-fi comedy about a cantankerous, alcoholic scientist, Rick, and his impressionable grandson, Morty, who chase after adventures on other planets and in other dimensions. Now that the rest of the series is finally returning on July 30, it's "time to get schwifty" at Alley Gallery's "Ultra Schwifty Rick and Morty Art Show." Organized by Pomona painter and musician Brandon the Wizard, the group show features more than a dozen artists whose paintings, drawings, graffiti and digital works are inspired by Rick, Morty, the rest of the Smith family and other characters and creatures. The event includes a cosplay contest, in addition to live band Sacred Silence, singer Evin Shordon, DJ Gnosis and DJ Acidic. The Alley Gallery, 101 S. Main St., Pomona; opening party on Sat., July 22, 5-10 p.m. (runs through July 31); free. facebook.com/events/1812897615705487. —Siran Babayan
Otherwise known as FLAX, France Los Angeles Exchange is a local nonprofit that facilitates cultural exchange between L.A.-based artists and those living in France. In this free event at Grand Park, French video and performance artist Lola Gonzàlez teams up with L.A.-based composer Paul Chavez and choreographer-dancer Oguri for an immersive, site-specific dance presentation featuring 60 performers. Curated by Anna Milone, The distance is beautiful. La distance la plus courte entre deux points n'est pas une ligne droite is both a performance and an experience that takes audiences on an interactive journey through the streets of Los Angeles, via France. Grand Park, 200 N. Grand Ave., downtown; Sat., July 22, 7:30 p.m.; free. flaxfoundation.org. —Tanja M. Laden
1912 marked the beginning of a golden period for cinema pioneer D.W. Griffith. Among the several dozen short films he produced for the Biograph Company that year is The Girl and Her Trust, a 15-minute masterpiece about a woman (Dorothy Bernard) who finds herself besieged by a mob trying to plunder a lonely telegraph station. Retroformat, which is dedicated to screening silents on 8mm or 16mm with live musical accompaniment, will show this landmark suspense exercise along with a few other goodies from the same pivotal year, including The Female of the Species, The Goddess of Sagebrush Gulch and The Lesser Evil. Live musical accompaniment will be provided by Cliff Retallick. The evening is dedicated to the memory of legendary film preservationist David Shepard, who died in January. Spielberg Theatre at the Egyptian, 6712 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood; Sat., July 22, 7:30 p.m.; $12. (323) 466-3456, lafilmforum.org.
Artist celebrate Rick and Morty in Pomona on Saturday.
Courtesy Andrew Mack
Noted stage director James Lapine has a long history of working with star musical-theater composer Stephen Sondheim (Into the Woods, Sweeney Todd), and in 2010 he directed the Broadway debut of his homage, Sondheim on Sondheim, a musical revue that encompasses many of the songwriter's greatest hits. Tonight's revival will be directed by Lapine's niece Sarna Lapine, and features such memorable tunes as "Love Is in the Air," "Ever After" and the inevitable "Send in the Clowns." Actor-singer Vanessa Williams returns from the original Broadway production alongside Matthew Morrison, Sarah Uriarte Berry, Jonathan Groff, Ruthie Ann Miles and Jesse Tyler Ferguson, among others. Conductor Gustavo Dudamel's deft touch with the L.A. Phil should give these merry songs even more emotional resonance. Hollywood Bowl, 2301 N. Highland Ave., Hollywood; Sun., July 23, 7:30 p.m.; $14-$189. (323) 850-2000, hollywoodbowl.com. —Falling James
Mexican-American guitarist and singer Lalo Guerrero is widely considered the "Father of Chicano Music," and his boleros, corridos and humorous parodies influenced generations of Latinx musicians. After cutting his first record in 1939, Guerrero went on to record more than 700 songs in his nearly seven-decade career, including ballads honoring Cesar Chavez and other labor activists, the music for Luis Valdez's 1979 play Zoot Suit and contributions to Ry Cooder's Chavez Ravine album in 2005, the year Guerrero died. Hosted by Guerrero's son Dan, Lalopolooza: A Chicanofest Celebrating Lalo Guerrero features performances from Tres Souls (bolero), Lindas Mexicanas (mariachi) and The Wise Guys Big Band (pachuco boogie), as well as a zoot suit fashion show and a lowrider car show, capturing the breadth of Guerrero's undeniable cultural legacy. LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes, 501 N. Main Street, downtown; Sun., July 23, noon-4 p.m.; free. lapca.org/content/lalopolooza-chicanofest-celebrating-lalo-guerrero. —Matt Stromberg
Mystery Science Theater 3000 Live brings to goofy life the beloved cult TV series' story of a human host and his robot chums trapped aboard a satellite and forced by their captor to watch really cheesy, B-grade sci-fi flicks. Perfervidly faithful fan geeks will gather to cheer on the series' creator, Joel Hodgson, and new host Jonah Heston (Jonah Ray) as they spar live onstage with jokemeister robot companions Crow (Hampton Yount), Tom Servo and Gypsy, along with Synthia (Rebecca Hanson) and surveillance squad members Kinga Forrester (Felicia Day) and Frank (Patton Oswalt). Audience participation is highly encouraged. There are two separate shows, with Eegah at 4 p.m. and a "secret surprise film" at 8. The Theatre at Ace Hotel, 929 S. Broadway, downtown; Sun., July 23, 4 & 8 p.m.; $39.50-$299. (213) 235-9614, theatre.acehotel.com. —John Payne
Apart from having the best worst title of any sequel produced in the 1990s, Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit has the distinction of being the most winsome film about religious devotion since Bresson's Les anges du péché. (Or at least since the original Sister Act.) Cinefamily presents this featherweight blockbuster comedy as part of its Nunday Funday series, held every Sunday in July. It hearkens back to a gentler, simpler time when the economy was in full swing and Whoopi Goldberg was known more for her acting than her views on The View. Cinefamily/Silent Movie Theatre, 611 N. Fairfax Ave., Fairfax; Sun. July 23, 2 p.m.; $12. (323) 655-2510, cinefamily.org.
Speaking of nuns, Ken Russell's The Devils remains every bit the cinematic gut punch it was back in 1971. Inspired by true events that transpired in 17th-century France, the film's content was potent enough to earn the controversial X rating in the United States. (Warner Bros., its U.S. distributor, still hasn't released it digitally.) Critical opinion differs sharply on its merits; depending on who you ask, it's either an overwrought distortion of history or one of the greatest political films of all time. Two things most will agree upon are Derek Jarman's stunning, sepulchral sets and Oliver Reed's superb performance as the sensual, openly sinful Father Grandier, the French priest accused of witchcraft by the insanely jealous, hunchbacked Sister Jeanne (Vanessa Redgrave). Russell's reputation as the bad boy of late-'60s and early-'70s cinema is vindicated by a maximalist style that cranks the already volatile subject matter up to 11. Egyptian Theatre, 6712 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood; Sun., July 23, 7:30 p.m.; $12. (323) 466-3456, americancinemathequecalendar.com.
The Cake and the Rain is songwriter Jimmy Webb's rendition of his own storied life (in book form), covering the years 1955 through 1970, and all the adventures and hit writing he managed to cram into that slender slice of time. You know his songs, many of which you probably wish you could carve out of your head with a Wilson Ear Drill: "Up, Up and Away," "The Highwayman" and "MacArthur Park" — and the incisively insightful Webb explains their genesis and the crazy, semi-sinful antics he got up to in the wake of the massive, Grammy-winning success of each of those hits. Book Soup, 8818 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood; Mon., July 24, 7 p.m.; free. (310) 659-3110, booksoup.com. —David Cotner
The Wizard himself will be in the house for a screening of The Wizard at TCL Chinese Theatres on Tuesday.
A legendary feat in corporate product placement, 1989 preteen odyssey The Wizard ensured that every child in America would make their parents' lives a living hell until they got their grubby little hands on a Nintendo Power Glove and a copy of Super Mario Bros. 3 (which was introduced in the film). Corey (Fred Savage) and his emotionally scarred younger half-brother Jimmy (Luke Edwards) travel across country — picking up ultimate late-'80s cool girl Haley (Jenny Lewis) along the way — and Jimmy winds up competing in a big video game tournament for Tommy-style savants with eyesight. At Tuesday's The Wizard '80s Retro Screening (of a 4K DCP), Luke Edwards will be in the house to tell stories about the making of the movie and maybe clue us in on how to find that damn Warp Whistle. TCL Chinese Theatres, 6925 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood; Tue., July 25, 7:30 p.m.. facebook.com/events/825346137632158. —Gwynedd Stuart
LACMA's upcoming exhibit "Chagall: Fantasies for the Stage" looks at the role music and theater played in Marc Chagall's art. Among the 145 items on display are costumes and preparatory sketches — in addition to film footage, musical accompaniment and a selection of well-known paintings — that Chagall created between 1942 and 1967 for the ballets Aleko, The Firebird and Daphnis and Chloé (for the Ballet of New York, now American Ballet Theater, and Paris Opera Ballet) and opera The Magic Flute (for the Metropolitan Opera House). In anticipation of the July 31 opening, LACMA senior curator of modern art Stephanie Barron moderates a conversation with Chagall's granddaughters Meret and Bella Meyer. LACMA, Bing Theater, 5905 Wilshire Blvd., Mid-Wilshire; Tue., July 25, 7 p.m.; free with RSVP. (323) 857-6010, lacma.org. —Siran Babayan
Seattle-based arts nonprofit and design lab Amplifier is manning a pop-up exhibition space in Silver Lake throughout July and early August, delivering a program designed to promote political engagement through the arts. In addition to weekly open studio days, Amplifier is hosting a series of events, including Unbroken by Bars, a project that merges public art with storytelling in order to pay tribute to imprisoned women. The presentation acknowledges women whose civil rights are systematically violated but who find ways to express love and maintain dignity with the outside world, despite being locked up. Amplifier Pop-Up, 3333 W. Sunset Blvd., Silver Lake; Tue., July 25, 7-9 p.m.; free, RSVP requested. amplifier.org. —Tanja M. Laden
Staying on top of the comedy scene in a city as big as Los Angeles isn't easy, which is why, in 2010, Jake Kroeger launched the comedy aggregator website the Comedy Bureau. A stand-up comic, Kroeger not only writes about the big news stories happening in film, TV and digital but also compiles perhaps the most comprehensive list of live events throughout L.A. County, from theaters and vaunted clubs to coffee shops, living rooms and backyards. Kroeger even hosts nightly tag-alongs, as part of Airbnb Experiences, where he makes stops at various comedy venues. Applying his expertise, Kroeger hosts APB: The Comedy Bureau's Most Wanted List, a curated night of stand-up by more than a dozen local comics. Comedy Central Stage at the Hudson, 6539 Santa Monica Blvd., Hollywood; Wed., July 26, 8 p.m.; free with RSVP. comedycentralstage.com. —Siran Babayan
Desert Hearts, based on Jane Rule's novel Desert of the Heart, is an irreducibly feminine take on the love that dare not speak its name (at least not in the 1950s). The film observes the thawing out of a tightly wound professor of English (Helen Shaver) who departs New York to obtain a divorce in Reno and slowly, inexorably falls for the charms of a bartending cowgirl (Patricia Charbonneau). Director Donna Deitch interprets their growing attraction as a series of conversations and rationalizations, providing an intellectual counterbalance to the unruly feelings that bubble beneath the surface. The American Cinematheque presents it as part of Rack Focus, an initiative focusing on women's contributions to the film industry. Stay in your seat for a post-movie discussion with Deitch, moderated by Samantha Shada. Aero Theatre, 1328 Montana Ave., Santa Monica; Sat., July 26, 7:30 p.m.; $12. (323) 466-3456, americancinemathequecalendar.com.
Pasadena's Playhouse District is the area around Colorado Boulevard just east of Old Town Pasadena. It's a hyper-specific designation, sure, but it has a neighborhood association of its very own, one that's hard at work putting on events and promoting restaurants. One such event, Dine the District, provides a chance to sample eats from restaurants in the neighborhood. A single ticket is $25, with four tickets selling as packages for $75 — add $10 per person if you want a wine tasting from Monopole Wine, too. Participating restaurants include El Portal, the Stand Pasadena, Roy's, Braise & Crumble, Foodie Cube, Round's Burgers, Zona Rosa Caffe and the Next Chapter. Pasadena Playhouse, 39 S. El Molino Ave., Pasadena; Thu., July 27, 5:30-8:30 p.m.; $25-$75. playhousedistrict.org. —Katherine Spiers
In March at NerdMelt, married actors Larry Clarke and Fielding Edlow premiered their comedy web series Bitter Homes and Gardens, in which they depict a quarrelsome husband and wife. Clarke and Edlow draw on their own relationship as they play typically struggling, narcissistic Hollywood types, who fight for sport and for our amusement. Still bickering, the two return to NerdMelt to host Bitter Homes and Gardens Live!, which will include a screening of an episode of the series, storytelling and stand-up by fellow comic Kira Soltanovich. They'll also answer audience questions, because those who can't do, teach. And if you miss tonight's performance, you can watch Clarke and Edlow's disharmony every month at Hollywood's Three Clubs beginning in September. Nerdist Showroom at Meltdown Comics, 7522 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood; Thu., July 27, 9-10:30 p.m.; free with RSVP. (323) 851-7223, nerdmeltla.com. —Siran Babayan
Peter O'Toole's Oscar-nominated performance as a pickled, aging, Errol Flynn–ish matinee idol ("I'm not an actor, I'm a movie star!") is the highlight of Richard Benjamin's warmly affectionate My Favorite Year. Aficionados of the Golden Age of Television probably will appreciate the jokes on a deeper level than most, but the broad comic strokes are for everyone. The 1982 film screens as part of Laemmle's Anniversary Classics series. Benjamin and supporting actor Lanie Kazan are scheduled for a Q&A. Laemmle Royal, 11523 Santa Monica Blvd., West L.A., Thu., July 27, 7:30 p.m.; $15. (310) 478-3836, laemmle.com.
Vertigo, Alfred Hitchcock's enduring masterpiece of male sexual obsession shot in gleaming Technicolor, is the gift that keeps on giving. You discover new things — an ingenious touch, a revealing detail — every time you watch it. Audiences and critics were slow to embrace its pitch-dark undertones but nothing nowadays could unseat it as one of the World's Best Movies. As a straight mystery, there are plot holes so large a Buick could drive through them, but all logic seems to vanish under the master's hypnotic, all-encompassing spell. Laemmle's Throwback Thursdays presents this classic in partnership with Eat/See/Hear. Laemmle NoHo, 5420 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood; Thu., July 27, 7:30 p.m.; $11. (310) 478-3836, laemmle.com. —Nathaniel Bell
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