A Teacher's Secret Life Hillel Aron's look at the life and death of Harry Major, a Hollywood High teacher with a penchant for taking in ex-cons, had readers riveted last week ("The Pen Pal Murder," Oct. 17). Anon can't wait for the movie version, saying, "Great story and writing. Write...
While the Nightmare on Elm Street series went from “One, two, Freddy’s coming for you” to “Nine, 10, Robert Englund’s at a convention again,” it started out as a frightening look at small-town America, a place that was, in its way, just as ruined as the face of its serial-killer villain, Freddy Krueger. Wes Craven’s visionary work of horror struck directly at one of the most potent aspects of the human experience — dreaming — and transmogrified it into deeply personal violence, which, when paired with sick humor, took up a special place in the hearts of fans. By the time Don’t Sleep: An All-Nighter on Elm Street (Pts. 1-7), a 35mm marathon of the films, wraps up, you’ll stumble blinking into the daylight. Just don’t sleep through these movies — you might wake up in a multiplex chased by a spool of film that wants to have its way with you. Also scheduled: special Elm Street guests TBA, and if you’re lucky, maybe the resident Cinefamily DJs will play DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince’s “A Nightmare on Elm Nightmare on My Street” so you can really start dreaming of death.More
Tenacious D’s devil-worshipping chubby rockers Jack Black and Kyle Gass have been making fans laugh since they wrote “Fuck Her Gently” more than a decade ago, so who better to stage comedy in a music festival setting? Last year’s inaugural Festival Supreme included Adam Sandler, Patton Oswalt, Zach Galifianakis, Eric Idle, Tim & Eric, The Mister Show Experience, Garfunkel & Oates and The Mighty Boosh, as well as surprise appearances by Conan O’Brien, The Lonely Island and Billy Idol. This year’s lineup of comedy and bands (and a few performers who are doing both) features Cheech & Chong, Dethklok Metalocalypse, Workaholics, Margaret Cho, Norm Macdonald, Fred Armisen, Janeane Garofalo, Nick Kroll, Dr. Demento, Peaches, Eagles of Death Metal, The Aquabats and a reunion of The State. Also new this year? “The Circus of Death,” where you’ll encounter a spooky train ride, merry-go-round, puppets and freak-show characters to put you in the mood for Halloween. Costumes are encouraged. Dressing like Cheech or Chong — beanie, mustache, spliff — is highly encouraged. Shrine Expo Hall and Grounds, 665 W. Jefferson Blvd., University Park; Sat., Oct. 25, 2 p.m.; $99. festivalsupreme.com. More
Although Día de los Muertos, the Mexican tradition of honoring and celebrating the dearly departed, won’t start until Oct. 31, there’s a new Día coming to Long Beach today — Día de los Verdes. The festival takes place at the Growing Experience, a seven-acre farm that once was an empty lot within the Carmelitos Housing Projects. The farm now provides plots where Carmelitos’ residents can grow their own food, as well as a paid job-training program for youth and an affordable CSA open to anyone who wants to eat healthy and locally. Hosted with Green Long Beach, Squeeze Art Collective and Mixt Media Arts, the event will feature live music, crafting, face painting and a squash cook-off. At this twist on the classic ritual, the ofrendas honor not dead relatives but our tenuous relationship with nature — including one remembering extinct animals. The altars will be lit at 6 p.m. as part of the closing ceremony. Inspired by the diversity of Long Beach and the “celebration of life, family and culture” that is Día de los Muertos, Día de los Verdes is “a nod to our community and the ways in which we work together on a daily basis to strive for a sustainable, thriving future,” says Green Long Beach organizer Tiffany Chen. The Growing Experience Urban Farm, 750 Via Carmelitos, Long Beach; Sat., Oct. 25, 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; free. facebook.com/events/517615185050404.More
The 18th Street Art Center has been host and home to a quarter-century of the most progressive, fearless, experimental, visual and performing arts in Los Angeles history. So it’s fitting that its silver anniversary takes up the whole weekend. 18is25 starts with the de rigueur big gala benefit on Saturday night, followed by a day of beer, art, music and history on Sunday. The gala benefit art sale and party offers unique video and performance work, food and popular 18th Street extended family such as Barbara T. Smith, Phranc and Marcus Kuiland-Nazario. Sunday doubles as the center’s fifth annual BAM (Beer, Art and Music Festival) and as such is its own reward — but this year’s “anniversary edition” is augmented not only by a general air of festivity and frolic but also by unlimited tastings from some 40 artisanal brewers, the continuation of the previous evening’s art sale, on-site artists-in-residence in full open-studio mode and, yes, plenty of food trucks. 18th Street Art Center, 1639 18th St., Santa Monica.; Sat., Oct. 25, 6-10 p.m.-Sun., Oct. 26, 1-5 p.m.; $45-$125 (weekend passes $150). (310) 453-4347, 18thstreet.org. More
When it comes to the life of Bruce Haack, separating truth from fiction is not easy. The groundbreaking electronic music composer and inventor is said to have taught himself to play piano by age 3. By 8, he apparently was escaping his abusive mother's wrath by sneaking off to Indian...
Visual allure often isn't a virtue we value when chasing obscure flavors in L.A.'s international neighborhoods. In fact, adventurous diners tend to appreciate the opposite: The grungier the location, the more accomplished we feel for having sought it out. Looks be damned — let the fireworks happen on the flavor...
The Los Angeles art world has been saying a collective "hallelujah" since the arrival in January of Philippe Vergne as MOCA's new director. Although some East Coast commentators condemned the appointment — citing in particular a budget crisis scandal in which Vergne resorted to selling off a number of works...
Lily Simonson does serious research for her paintings. She studies specimens or goes on expeditions (she's on her way back to Antarctica this fall). But her paintings, like the ones in her "On Ice" exhibition at CB1, don't necessarily read as scientific. They read as intuitive, painterly explorations of what rock forms, icicles and iciness feel and look like. They're the kind of things you just like. And the way the main gallery is black-lit and her paintings glow seems to shrug off the gravitas of both art and science. 207 W. Fifth St., dwntwn.; through Oct. 26. (213) 806-7889, cb1gallery.com.More
It's just math. With ever more overflowing arts districts and only so many Saturday nights a month, a bumper crop of shows opens tonight in Culver City — and several galleries are ringing in the new season by showing off their marquee rosters. Exact hours and show durations vary, so you'll want to check gallery sites for complete details. Promising and must-see highlights include Brooklyn-based artist KAWS at Honor Fraser, offering new work extrapolating from the Peanuts comics. The artist styles these images to the point of abstraction with his trademark bold color schemes, along with more gestural, black-and-white works (through Oct. 31). Also Kehinde Wiley's World Stage series at Roberts & Tilton (through Oct. 25) continues with an iteration based on Haiti's pageant culture, using the artist's iconic portraits of everyday folks rendered in his lavishly regal style. Zackary Drucker & Rhys Ernst's Post / Relationship / X at Luis de Jesus (through Nov. 1) surveys their years-long transgender love affair and artistic collaboration with recent photos that debuted at Paris Photo L.A., as well as a brand-new video piece. Sandow Birk at Koplin Del Rio (through Oct. 17) presents the third in his aesthetically and emotionally intense series transcribing the entire Koran and illuminating it with images of contemporary secular life in America. Rebecca Farr offers haunting mixed media paintings on canvas and the release of her new book at Klowden Mann through Oct. 18). The Miaz Brothers take on "The Masters" in a new series of ghostly, witty paintings at Fabien Castanier (through Oct. 11), in the Italian sibling-collaborators' first U.S. show. Tim Gratkowski at Walter Maciel (through Nov. 1) shows new two- and three-dimensional, retro-slick and expressively abstract mixed-media collages. Patricia Chidlaw at George Billis Gallery (through Nov. 1) installs a diverse suite of urban landscape paintings, which go beyond photorealism to show us our common world in an uncommon light. Honor Fraser Gallery, 2622 S. La Cienega Blvd., Culver City; thru Nov. 1; free. (310) 837-0191, honorfraser.com.More
It's an unwritten rule that we're supposed to feel most in step with people our own age, as if sharing the same cultural and historical references somehow enables our ability to look into one another's hearts. So why do we sometimes tumble into deeper friendships with people who are 10...
A Fuller Life is a family affair, produced and directed by Samantha Fuller, in honor of her late father, Samuel Fuller, the great journalist-turned-filmmaker (Forty Guns, Pickup on South Street, The Naked Kiss).
Reminiscent of Koyaanisqatsi in both form and content, Anlo Sepulveda and Paul Collins's experimental documentary Yakona tells the story of the San Marcos River — or, rather, lets the river share its own origin tale and life story.
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People sometimes forget that The Swell Season was about more than just Glen Hansard, the Irish actor-singer who also fronts The Frames. At their best, The Swell Season was a marriage of equal parts, yin and yang, with Czech singer-pianist Markéta Irglová providing a sweetly soothing and natural contrast toRead more about this event
With their latest (and 16th) studio release, The Violet Flame, out last month, Erasure display their dance-floor relevancy in 2014 just as they did three decades ago with “Chains of Love.” For anyone who mourns the days when electronic dance music didn’t bring to mind kandi or offensively donned NativeRead more about this event
It’s usually useless to try to predict what Bob Dylan might do next. He’s traditionally untraditional about mixing his set lists with unexpected obscurities while dramatically rearranging the early hits. So what are we to make of his tour last month in Australia, where he played the same songs inRead more about this event
Even with the change of seasons (however subtle that might be in Southern California), the Hollywood Bowl hosts one more big outdoor spectacle as if it were still summer. The main appeal of We Can Survive — an annual benefit for the Young Survival Coalition and Living Beyond Breast CancerRead more about this event
While the Nightmare on Elm Street series went from “One, two, Freddy’s coming for you” to “Nine, 10, Robert Englund’s at a convention again,” it started out as a frightening look at small-town America, a place that was, in its way, just as ruined as the face of its serial-killerRead more about this event
Gorgon City’s highly anticipated debut album, Sirens, is full of ear-catching vocalists: Jennifer Hudson, Katy B, Laura Welsh. But don’t let that distract you from the music, which holds its own both on and off the dance floor. Sirens has its share of booty bounce, but it also has aRead more about this event
Tenacious D’s devil-worshipping chubby rockers Jack Black and Kyle Gass have been making fans laugh since they wrote “Fuck Her Gently” more than a decade ago, so who better to stage comedy in a music festival setting? Last year’s inaugural Festival Supreme included Adam Sandler, Patton Oswalt, Zach Galifianakis, EricRead more about this event
The 18th Street Art Center has been host and home to a quarter-century of the most progressive, fearless, experimental, visual and performing arts in Los Angeles history. So it’s fitting that its silver anniversary takes up the whole weekend. 18is25 starts with the de rigueur big gala benefit on SaturdayRead more about this event
Drummer Terry Bozzio first came to prominence in the band of Frank Zappa, a manic presence propelling the group as featured in the movie Baby Snakes. Bozzio then went on to co-found the ’80s hit band Missing Persons before eventually landing with Jeff Beck. Since leaving Beck, Terry has spentRead more about this event
Although Día de los Muertos, the Mexican tradition of honoring and celebrating the dearly departed, won’t start until Oct. 31, there’s a new Día coming to Long Beach today — Día de los Verdes. The festival takes place at the Growing Experience, a seven-acre farm that once was an emptyRead more about this event
With more than 80 million albums sold worldwide, Daryl Hall and John Oates are the best-selling duo in music history. The Philadelphia-based, soul-infused pop outfit ruled the charts during the late 1970s and into the ’80s with such hits as “Sara Smile,” “I Can’t Go for That (No Can Do),”Read more about this event
Rachael Yamagata continues to sing well-crafted pop songs that are pretty without being sugary, and romantic without lapsing into complete bathos. The Virginia-born singer-songwriter is able to take her own experience and transmute it into music that is both universal and personal. “All those words you said at the endingRead more about this event
America’s policy of never-ending war comes at an incalculable price, and it’s our military — our youth — who get stuck carrying the debt. At The Warrior’s Return: From Surge to Suburbia, that ghastly cost, reckoned in loss of life, limbs, innocence and even sanity, will be addressed by twoRead more about this event
Autumn’s annual Murder Ballads night is always an intensely atmospheric gasser, and this fifth edition, touted as “A Tribute to True Crimes of Passion,” guarantees a stimulatingly sinister earful. Featuring contributions from psychedelic Westerners Spindrift, the unhinged psych-pop provocateurs Bloody Death Skull (who’ve been aptly and admirably pigeonholed as “TinRead more about this event
Bob Odenkirk must have the strangest interactions with fans. Comedy nerds fawn over his cult HBO program Mr. Show, drama fans hound him about Breaking Bad and cinephiles praise his work in Alexander Payne’s Academy Award–nominated Nebraska. Since the end of Mr. Show in the late 1990s, Odenkirk has branchedRead more about this event
This month, DJ Shadow and Cut Chemist finished off the Renegades of Rhythm tour, during which they deejayed Afrika Bambaataa’s records, now archived at Cornell University. To be clear: Those were Bambaataa’s actual, personal records from the late ’70s and ’80s, the exact physical artifacts that helped birth hip-hop. SoRead more about this event
Remember last year when everyone was walking around Union Station with fancy headphones on, and the passengers were all, “What the heck are those people doing?” Go figure: They were listening to a live opera taking place in real time throughout the building. Possibly the only opera to be featuredRead more about this event
This Phoenix group’s new album, Vacant Face, is a strong contender for best metal album of 2014. The sextet tweaks the death-n-roll genre hallmarks popularized by Swedish acts such as Entombed and Dismember — groove-laden death metal with a rock & roll swagger — and adds flourishes of psychedelics andRead more about this event
Today’s generation might be familiar only with Steven Spielberg and Tom Cruise’s 2005 adaptation of H.G. Wells’ The War of the Worlds, but on Halloween Eve 1938, back when radio was the lifeline of the home, Orson Welles’ retelling of the sci-fi novel became the most infamous radio broadcast inRead more about this event
San Francisco’s Stone Foxes play swampy, sweaty, bluesy, throwback, bar-band rock & roll with all the intensity of a bunch of guys who just invented the sound last week. Less slick than The Black Keys and less weird than Tom Waits, but channeling some of their same shoutat-the-world intensity, theRead more about this event