Send out summer with a bang at Viceroy Santa Monica's Labor Day Pool Party.
Send out summer with a bang at Viceroy Santa Monica's Labor Day Pool Party.
Courtesy Three Day Rule

20 Best Things to Do in L.A. This Week


The "last" pool party of the year, a chili cook-off in Camarillo, the first week of comedian Eddie Pepitone's month-long residency, and more fun stuff to do and see in L.A. this week.

fri 9/1

Late last month, resurgent DTLA gallery Think Tank launched its weeks-long group exhibition "Drinkin' Smokin' & West Coastin,'" a so-called "love-hate letter" to L.A. that focuses on the years between the 1984 Olympics and the Kings-Lakers rivalry of the early '00s. The gallery is hosting pop-up events and themed parties throughout the show's run, and this week, it's teaming with Little Face and Higher Beauty for the Cannabis Cabaret. Called the "best pot party in California" by Rolling Stone, the weed-themed, speakeasy-style variety show features drag by Samantha Starrland and Selena Blackwater, puppetry by Cain the Puppet Master, music by Nicky Disko, burlesque by CannaMiss Marquez and Mama Mary Jane, plus "tastings" (note: attendees must have valid doctor recommendations and need to join ShowGrow's collective to participate). Think Tank Gallery, 939 Maple Ave., downtown; Fri., Sept. 1, 9 p.m.-1 a.m.; $40, $80 VIP. drinkinsmokinwestcoastin.com. —Gwynedd Stuart

The Taste, sponsored by the L.A. Times, is one of the biggest food events all year. The three-day festival has a different theme for each three-hour block of time, though all five of those generally aim to celebrate L.A.'s best restaurants and most iconic ambassadors of food culture. Weekend passes are already sold out, but tickets for the different three-hour blocks can be purchased individually, at $95-$180. The evening events are more cocktail-focused; for instance, Saturday night will see five different mixology demonstrations on the stages. It all kicks off on Friday with Opening Night, which features food from roughly 30 eateries including Fat Dragon, Jeni's Splendid Ice Cream and Chichén Itzá, plus appearances by L.A. Times staffers such as Jonathan Gold and L.A. culinary luminaries like Sherry Yard of Tuck Room Tavern and Sang Yoon of Father's Office. Paramount Studios, 5555 Melrose Ave., Hollywood; Fri., Sept. 1, 7:30-10:30 p.m. (also Sat.-Sun., Sept. 2-3); $95-$180. extras.latimes.com/taste. —Katherine Spiers

From the sublime to the ridiculous, the fifth annual "The Coaster Show" at La Luz de Jesus Gallery presents great art, writ small, on more than 1,000 4-inch drink coasters by illustrators as varied as Ron English, Penelope Houston, Maia Gross and Mark Ryden. For many of the artists, this constitutes the first public showing of their work, all of which is for sale for $250 or less. Whether you'll actually use them as coasters at home depends on how much free will you actually have — are they art or are they still functional? Eh, probably stick with the Ikea coasters for your can of PBR. La Luz de Jesus Gallery, 4633 Hollywood Blvd., Los Feliz; Fri., Sept. 1, 8 p.m.; free. (323) 666-7667, laluzdejesus.com. —David Cotner

Jacques Becker's intense masterpiece Le Trou opens tonight at Laemmle's Ahrya Fine Arts for a weeklong run. One of the purest of prison-escape films, it seethes with the energy of a director never content to settle for mere realism. Much more than a taut exercise in suspense, it's a close study of men under pressure and of the primal need for freedom. Its suffocating atmosphere and laserlike focus make The Shawshank Redemption look like a cake walk. This rerelease is the result of a new 4K transfer by Rialto Pictures. Some advice: Don't wait for the Blu-ray. Laemmle Ahrya Fine Arts Theatre, 8556 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills; Fri., Sept. 1; $11. (310) 478-3836, laemmle.com. —Nathaniel Bell

The cult status of Plan 9 From Outer Space has evolved over time. No longer considered the Worst Film of All Time (thanks largely to Mystery Science Theater 3000 reruns), it now looks more like what it truly is — a labor of love made by a visionary director bereft of talent. Edward D. Wood Jr.'s legendary 1959 whatsit will screen at Cinefamily as part of its Friday Night Frights series. Larry Karaszewski (co-writer of Tim Burton's sublime Ed Wood) and Dana Gould (stand-up comedian extraordinaire) will be there to offer their insight. Cinefamily/Silent Movie Theatre, 611 N. Fairfax Ave., Fairfax; Fri., Sept. 1, mid.; $12. (323) 655-2510, cinefamily.org. —Nathaniel Bell

sat 9/2

Just ahead of the real Mexican Independence Day (which is September 16, not Cinco de Mayo), Grandeza Mexicana Folk Ballet Company displays why it is one of SoCal's most popular folkloric performance groups. Expect the troupe's signature meticulous footwork and exuberantly colored costumes as the ensemble celebrates director Jose Vences' 25th-anniversary with dances that capture Mexico's varied regions. Known for careful research into the regional cultures underlying his choreography, Vences unveils a new work for this celebration. Although the troupe doesn't usually perform to live music, this anniversary event brings La Banda de Tlayacapan from Mexico to accompany the festivities. Ford Theatres, 2580 Cahuenga Blvd. E., Hollywood Hills; Sat., Sept. 2, 8 p.m.; $34-$54. (323) 461-3673, fordtheatres.org. —Ann Haskins

Bravo has some of the biggest stars on reality TV, love 'em or hate 'em. Since 2012, Ronnie Karam and Ben Mandelker have hosted Watch What Crappens (a play on the network's nighttime talk show Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen), their wonderfully bitchy, L.A.-based five-day-a-week podcast that lovingly mocks all things Bravo, whether it's the obscenely rich busybodies of The Real Housewives franchise, hard-partying Persian-Americans of Shahs of Sunset or contestants on Top Chef. For tonight's live taping, Karam and Mandelker will discuss Flipping Out with the show's cast members, including house flipper and designer Jeff Lewis, plus Gage Edward and Jenni Pulos; they'll also revisit a season-three episode of The Real Housewives of New York titled "Scary Island." Teragram Ballroom, 1234 W. Seventh St., Westlake; Sat., Sept. 2, 9 p.m.; $20. (213) 689-9100, teragramballroom.com. —Siran Babayan

Cinefamily hosts a three-day retrospective in honor of Jerry Schatzberg, a sophisticated talent who rose to prominence in the 1970s for his gritty studies of drifters and drug addicts. The best of these, Scarecrow, concerns itself with two vagrants (Gene Hackman and Al Pacino), their growing bond, and their pipe dream of starting a car wash business in Pittsburgh. Scene by scene and moment by moment, it's one of the most accurate depictions of bum life ever to appear on American screens. Schatzberg will be in attendance to share his reflections. Cinefamily/Silent Movie Theatre, 611 N. Fairfax Ave., Fairfax; Sat., Sept. 2, 7:30 p.m.; $14. (323) 655-2510, cinefamily.org. —Nathaniel Bell

Grandeza Mexicana Folk Ballet Company performs in the Hollywood Hills on Saturday.
Grandeza Mexicana Folk Ballet Company performs in the Hollywood Hills on Saturday.
Gennia Cui

sun 9/3

Since Delicious Pizza opened on Adams Boulevard in West Adams in 2015, it's become a hub in a neighborhood on the upswing. In the outdoor garden they call "the Yard," co-owners Mike and Rick Ross host the West Adams Block Party just in time for Labor Day. The free, open-to-the-public party features music from jazz, funk, soul and hip-hop artists and DJs, kids activities like face painting and a bounce castle and, of course, yummy food. Besides its popular pizza offerings, the shop is hosting a pop-up of the Detroit-based doughnut shop Dilla's Delights Doughnuts, in honor of legendary producer-rapper J Dilla. Spending time with the community just got sweeter. 5419 W. Adams Blvd., West Adams; Sun., Sept. 3, 2-10 p.m.; free. (323) 424-3014, deliciouspizza.com. —Gwynedd Stuart

The ninth annual Camarillo Chili Cook-Off & Music Festival is an official event of the ICS — International Chili Society, if you don't know. That means the country's best chili cooks will be setting up their pots and vying for both the love of the audience and for ribbons. There is a people's choice award at the event, so you can taste as many of the contenders as you like, then cast your ballot. There are food vendors, too — all down-home stuff like burgers, ice cream, kettle corn and lemonade. While you're sampling bean stews, a bounce house and all kinds of kid-friendly arts and crafts will keep the youngsters occupied. Windows down on the not unsubstantial ride home. Camarillo Ranch Foundation, 201 Camarillo Ranch Road, Camarillo; Sun., Sept. 3, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.; $20, free kids 12 and younger. www.camarillochamber.org/chilicookoff. —Katherine Spiers

The Broad Stage celebrates the waning days of summer at its annual Broad Fest, which spreads food, booths, music and other entertainment across three areas. The Plaza Stage includes Indian, Bolero, blues, electric violin and family-friendly reggae performed by Sadubas, Aaron Nigel Smith, Tres Souls, Val Vigoda and Shawn Amos. The Edye Second Space features Global Motion dance company (composed of Santa Monica College students), the SMC Jazz Ensemble and educational talks by SMC and Heal the Bay. The Music Halls hosts interactive tango, hula-hooping and art-making lessons. The Broad Stage, 1310 11th St., Santa Monica; Sun., Sept. 3, 2-7 p.m.; free. (310) 434-3200, thebroadstage.org. —Siran Babayan

mon 9/4

Last year, more than 500 people gathered at the pool at the Viceroy Santa Monica for one last summertime hoorah before the symbolic beginning of fall made white shoes and pool parties frowned upon. Matchmaking website Three Day Rule is giving it another go — and expecting even more people — at the second annual Labor Day Pool Party. Besides an abundance of bikini- and boardshort-clad babes, the party features DJs, dancing, a barbecue, Svedka cocktails and Jell-O shots, and enough fun floaties to go around. Fall doesn't necessarily mean an end to summer fun in Southern California, but hey, any excuse to party like it's your very last chance. Viceroy Santa Monica, 1819 Ocean Ave., Santa Monica; Mon., Sept. 4, 1-5 p.m.; $10-$20. thelastpoolparty.eventbrite.com. —Gwynedd Stuart

Will Hines is a UCB actor, teacher and director, whose credits include Inside Amy Schumer, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Brooklyn Nine-Nine and Broad City. He's also a Fab Four super fan, who this year launched the podcast Screw It, We're Just Gonna Talk About The Beatles. Hines and his fellow UCB comedians discuss one of The Beatles' studio albums per episode, from Please Please Me to Abbey Road, as well as related topics: George Martin, Lennon songs vs. McCartney songs, Beatles books, covers, etc. (Ever heard Sean Connery's spoken-word version of "In My Life"? Chilling.) For the podcast's first live taping, Hines and co-host Joel Spence will analyze John, Paul and George's vocals and harmonies, and guests Ariana Lenarsky, Heather Woodward and Jackie Johnson will sing "Oh! Darling," "Because" and other Beatles tunes. UCB Sunset, 5419 W. Sunset Blvd., East Hollywood; Mon., Sept. 4, 10:30 p.m.; $7. (323) 908-8702, sunset.ucbtheatre.com. —Siran Babayan

tue 9/5

Washington, D.C., hardcore punk is synonymous with Bad Brains, Minor Threat and other influential acts from the late 1970s and early '80s. Live at the Safari Club: A History of harDCore Punk in the Nation's Capital: 1988-1998, however, focuses on the music and the scene that flourished in the city after hardcore punk's heyday, namely the sweaty, stage-diving glory of the Safari Club, a windowless dive and Ethiopian restaurant that also hosted bands. Co-authors Shawna Kenney, who was one of the venue's promoters, and husband Rich Dolinger share hundreds of black-and-white photographs and interviews with members of Bad Brains, Danzig, Rancid, Hole, Sick of It All, Gorilla Biscuits and other groups, in addition to clubgoers, artists and zine makers. Dolinger is a writer and photographer, and Kenney is the author of the 1999 memoir I Was a Teenage Dominatrix; both currently live in L.A. The two discuss their book with Mark Gitter, who also previews his upcoming book, xXx Fanzine (1983-1988): Hardcore & Punk in the '80s. Skylight Books, 1818 N. Vermont Ave., Los Feliz; Tue., Sept. 5, 7:30 p.m.; free, book is $30. (323) 660-1175, skylightbooks.com. —Siran Babayan

Vincente Minnelli's all-black musical Cabin in the Sky transcends racial politics by virtue of sheer exuberance and talent. Nowhere else will you see Lena Horne (in her sole moment in the MGM spotlight) sing "Honey in the Honeycomb" or Ethel Waters croon "Happiness Is Just a Thing Called Joe." Louis Armstrong even shows up as a Satanic emissary. LACMA screens this anomalous Hollywood classic in its Tuesday Matinees series. LACMA, 5905 Wilshire Blvd., Mid-Wilshire; Tue., Sept. 5, 1 p.m.; $4. (323) 857-6000, lacma.org. —Nathaniel Bell

wed 9/6

Delve deep into the dark mind of comedian Eddie Pepitone when he becomes the first comedian to have a weekly residency at Dan Harmon's newish venue, Starburns Castle. In his appearances on everything from the podcast WTF With Marc Maron to Conan and Bob's Burgers — not to mention his frequent stand-up gigs on stages around town — Pepitone exudes a born-and-bred New Yorker's manic energy, frequently breaking into fits of incandescent anger that you can't help but enjoy. It's like secondhand catharsis. He brings his maniac vibe — some call it genius — to the stage at Starburns four times this month, each night spitting pearls of wisdom like a disgruntled East Coast oyster. Starburns Castle, 1105 W. Isabel St., Burbank; Wed., Sept. 6, 8 p.m.; $10. (818) 433-3300, starburnscastle.com. —David Cotner

LACMA screens a matinee of Vincente Minnelli's Cabin in the Sky.EXPAND
LACMA screens a matinee of Vincente Minnelli's Cabin in the Sky.
MGM

thu 9/7

With a snazzy score by Lennie Hayton and ebulliently memorable tunes by composer Nacio Herb Brown and lyricist Arthur Freed, Singin' in the Rain remains one of the most thoroughly enjoyable musicals from Hollywood's Golden Age. Choreographing many of his own fantastic dance sequences, Gene Kelly portrays a silent-film star at the dawn of the talkies era who is pulled in opposing directions by his ostensible girlfriend (Jean Hagen) and a mysterious stranger (Debbie Reynolds). Rampant silliness ensues, not to mention soaring, dreamy dance interludes with Kelly and Cyd Charisse. Conductor David Newman, scion of the Newman dynasty of composers (Alfred, Maria, Thomas and Randy), aligns L.A. Philharmonic with the film in a live instrumental score at tonight's screening. Hollywood Bowl, 2301 N. Highland Ave., Hollywood Hills; Thu., Sept. 7, 8 p.m.; $1-$154. (323) 850-2000, hollywoodbowl.com. —Falling James

Long Beach Qfilm Festival is the city's oldest film festival, attracting more than 1,500 visitors annually. This year's highlight is the opening-night screening of The Untold Tales of Armistead Maupin, Jennifer Kroot's new documentary on the famed author of the Tales of the City novels. The four-day schedule includes dozens of features, shorts and more documentaries that highlight LGBTQ topics, as well as discussions, awards, parties, an ice cream social and a drag brunch. Screenings are at the art deco Art Theater, with receptions at the LGBTQ Center of Long Beach, which has served the local gay and lesbian community since 1980. Art Theatre of Long Beach, 2025 E. Fourth St., Long Beach; Thu., Sept. 7, 7:30 p.m. (through Sept. 10); $12. (562) 434-4455, qfilmslongbeach.com. —Siran Babayan

Sometimes you're in the mood for Last Year at Marienbad, and sometimes you're in the mood for Predator. There's a moment in the latter when Arnold Schwarzenegger locks fists with Carl Weathers and the camera lingers on their bulging biceps, their bulk filling the entirety of the widescreen frame. The basic scenario involves a high-tech extraterrestrial stalking a team of commandos in the Central American jungle, but the film also is notable for featuring two U.S. governors in key roles (Schwarzenegger and Jesse Ventura). Laemmle shows this quintessence of 1980s male bravado as part of its Throwback Thursdays series. Laemmle NoHo, 5420 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood; Thu., Sept. 7, 7:30 p.m.; $12. (310) 478-3836, laemmle.com. —Nathaniel Bell

Charles Burnett is a name cherished among cinephiles, and it wouldn't be a stretch to call him the most gifted African-American filmmaker working today (with all due respect to Spike Lee). Burnett is the subject of a forthcoming study by eminent scholar James Naremore, titled Charles Burnett: A Cinema of Symbolic Knowledge. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences hosts a talk by Naremore followed by a screening of To Sleep With Anger, Burnett's rich 1990 family drama laced with supernatural undertones. It's a golden opportunity to get acquainted with a singular yet underappreciated talent. Samuel Goldwyn Theater, 8949 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills; Thu., Sept. 7, 7:30 p.m.; $5. (310) 247-3000, oscars.org. —Nathaniel Bell

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