At a party at the True offices on Wilshire, three dudes have just finished pitching an app. They look like design students, with black vests and matching haircuts. One of them boasts that the founder had a chance to be the sixth employee at Instagram. But when the founder starts...
Perfect for those looking to stock up for Burning Man, there's the famous Venice Love Shack. With its cool, eclectic, weird, artist-community-meets-thrift-store-meets-yoga-studio vibe that epitomizes Venice Beach, the Love Shack is just one of those places you have to see to believe. Luckily, we took pictures. All photos by Star Foreman.
Even as the latest Step Up movie returns street dance to the screen, this year's installment of the annual J.U.i.C.E. Hip-Hop Festival returns street dance to the stage. The inventive dance organization with the unwieldy name of Justice by Uniting in Creative Energy has the good sense to go by its acronym, and the good sense to keep putting together this summer gathering of local and international street dancers. Now in its sixth year, the festival lineup promises a full evening of street-dance styles, with performers Jacob "Kujo" Lyons, Harry Weston, Breeze Lee, Emiko Sugiyama, Marie Poppins & Pandora, Toogie & Boogie Frantick, The Physical Poets, Lady Cultura, Millennium Dance Complex Tokyo, Open House, Versa-Style Next Generation, and Hok from Quest Crew. The preshow features one-on-one b-boy and b-girl battles at 7 p.m., with the final battle onstage just before curtain (to participate, go to fordtheatres.org/en/about/probreakingtour), as well as DJ Kenzo, host L. Scatterbrain, graffiti and spoken-word artists. Plus, Mari Koda, better known as Jenny Kido from the Step Up movies, will be there for a meet-and-greet. John Anson Ford Amphitheatre, 2580 Cahuenga Blvd. East, Hlywd.; Fri., Aug. 22, 8:30 p.m.; $30-$50, $15 students, $12 children. (323) 461-3673, fordtheatres.org.More
Just as organizations such as A/V Geeks and the Prelinger Archives have been busy digitizing Super-8 and 16mm home movies, instructional films, and other forms of celluloid ephemera, Everything Is Terrible (EIT) is dedicated to finding the most god-awful casualties of VHS and virtually every kind of media thereafter. Everything Is Festival is a series of public screenings showcasing some of the most mind-glowingly bad shit out there. This year's fun, five-day film fest, Everything Is Festival: The 5th Dimension, kicks off with EIT's very own Memory Hole, a visual assemblage of rejects from America's Funniest Home Videos, which offers a window into America during the last quarter-century. Ticketed presentations include the 1991 amusing atrocity Samurai Cop (with star Matt Hannon in person!) and the sophomore edition of The Most Outrageous Video Games. Other highlights: Barry Hansen aka Dr. Demento's favorite finds, as well as the Found Footage Battle Royale, a community invitational for anyone hankering to share their own funny and/or disturbing under-recognized gems. Cinefamily at the Silent Movie Theatre, 611 N. Fairfax Ave., Fairfax District; Thu., Aug. 28 to Mon., Sept. 1 (various showtimes); opening night free. All other screenings $12/$15, members free. (323) 655-2510, cinefamily.org.More
Hosted by Hart Pulse Dance Company, this annual fest, billed as L.A.'s largest dance festival, presents more than 60 dances in hip hop, ballet, tap, modern, tribal, contemporary, jazz, belly, and pole dancing. Each of the four shows has a different line-up, but some groups repeat. The opening show includes A.D.E., Katie Jane Hagen, Stella Melina, Hideen Entropy Movement Project, Hazel Clarke, Maha and Company, Kaleidoscape Dance, Samantha Loui & Cindy Sheng, Embark Dance Theatre, Jessica Harper, Elena Sophia Kozak, Compass Dance Company, OdDancity, Fuse Dance Company, and the host company. For the full festival line up and tickets: www.hartpulsedance.com.More
Ahoy, mateys! Get thee to ye olde Port of Los Angeles for Tall Ships Festival L.A., a five-day boating festival that pays tribute to a time when ports such as ours welcomed not just shipping containers and the occasional cruise ship but also majestic vessels called "tall ships" — classic boats with traditional, complicated rigs. From battleships to schooners to the World's Largest Rubber Duck (yes, really), this year's lineup promises something for everyone. The kid-friendly event includes a Friday-night screening of The Little Mermaid, projected on the sails of the Freda B. Live bands and cannon demonstrations will provide daily entertainment, while those willing to shell out some extra cash can actually ride on one of the museum-quality ships. And because every good captain knows a fed crew is a happy crew, plenty of food trucks, including the Lobsta Truck and Luckdish, will be in attendance. Los Angeles Waterfront, 250 S. Harbor Blvd., San Pedro; Wed., Aug. 20, noon-8 p.m.; Thu.-Fri., Aug. 21-22, 10 a.m.-8 p.m.; Sat., Aug. 23-Sun., Aug. 24, 9 a.m.-6 p.m.; $7-$85, free viewing for kids under 4. (877) 4FLYTIX, tallshipsfestivalla.com.More
fri 7/25 Dierks Bentley GREEK THEATRE For the better part of the past decade, Dierks Bentley has helped usher in a new era of country music. His catalog has spawned seven No. 1 hits on Billboard's Hot Country Songs charts and cemented his status as one of mainstream country's superstars...
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...
Little Tokyo in downtown Los Angeles became a ramen paradise over the weekend as part of the Japanese cultural festival Nisei Week. Everything was hot -- from the food, to the weather, to the scene. All photos by Danny Liao.
We've got so many restaurants, you could eat at a different joint every day of the year -- and probably the rest of your life -- and never go to the same place twice. It would be impossible (both physically and financially) to try them all, but luckily, you have us. Check out The Year in L.A. Food (So Far).
The little girl who appears to live at 2300 Silver Lake Blvd. has been playing cowboys and Indians. She's set up an all-out, hand-to-hand battle on the living room floor. Little figurines face each other. Some stereotypically shirtless Native Americans crawl along the carpet. A cowboy stands watching from the...
Emmy season is the perfect time to focus our attention on the beautiful costumes that make our favorite shows come to life. After all, what would Downton Abbey, Game of Thrones or Mad Men be without the costume designers who make those far-off worlds believable? Once a year, the FIDM Museum & Galleries' "Outstanding Art of Television Costume Design" exhibition gives these costumes the spotlight. Curated by Mary Rose, president of the Costume Designers Guild (as well as a governor of the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, which presents the Emmys), the exhibit allows up-close and personal access to 75 designs otherwise only visible on the silver screen. Pick your favorites before the Emmys air on Aug. 25, or come back after watching the show to marvel at the winning designs. FIDM Museum, 919 S. Grand Ave., dwntwn.; Tue.-Sat., 10 a.m.-4 p.m.; thru Sept. 20; free. (213) 623-5821, fidmmuseum.org.More
Opening reception Aug. 22, 7-10 p.m.
"Neckface: Drinking on the Job" is a show a year in the making — and it sounds like one hell of a year. Inspired by the tenaciously seedy bar culture of his new hometown of L.A., this tagger/painter/phenom immersed himself in alcoholism (and related unsavory behaviors) for an extended bender, during which he somehow managed to work furiously on his art. The result: the dark, witty and hilarious pieces created for this much-anticipated installation. Using a method akin to the surrealists' automatic drawings, Neckface basically worked nightly in a fugue state, awoke to discover the surprises he left for himself in the studio the evening before, and then refined and elaborated on them before starting the process all over again. Well, maybe refined is not the word. Neckface is, after all, known for his exceptionally vulgar, sassy and sophomoric yet insightful observations on human nature — and his new barfly compatriots did not skimp on the material. New Image Art Gallery, 7920 Santa Monica Blvd., W. Hlywd.; Fri., Aug. 22, 7-10 p.m.; continues Tue.-Sat., 1-6 p.m., through Sept. 13; free. (323) 654-2192, newimageartgallery.com.More
Pin-up girls, beatnik boys and tiki lovers from L.A. and beyond made a splash at San Diego's Crowne Plaza Hotel, which hosted the annual Tiki Oasis event, this year themed "Beat Tiki" with a groovy "60s beat" thrust. The wild weekender took over the grounds with colorful cocktails, non-stop pool and room parties, fashion shows, seminars, shopping and live entertainment including burlesque, bands and more.
In honor of the 50th anniversary of Beatlemania the Flying Morgans had a Beatle prom this last Friday to celebrate Molly, Bonnie and Gary's Birthday with 400 of their closest friends. All photos by Star Foreman.
Jennifer M. Kroot’s To Be Takei is an affectionate portrait of the hardest-working member of the original cast of Star Trek, George Takei. That’s pronounced tuh-KAY, not tuh-KAI, as so many have misspoken it over the years, including but not limited to William Shatner, whose strained non-relationship with Takei —...
Should grown-ups be spending their time reading young-adult novels, at the risk of missing the supposed riches of fiction written for actual grown-ups? A recent essay in Slate groused about the legions of adults who long ago graduated from the 12th grade but still devour YA fiction at the expense...
Picture a high school civics teacher with a great love for Ken Burns and access to people like Prince Charles and the Dalai Lama -- but no ability to ask them interesting questions -- making his first documentary on a laptop's built-in software.
Martial arts period drama 14 Blades'cartoonish action scenes are so energetic that it's hard to believe they weren't directed by master choreographer Woo-ping Yuen (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon; Drunken Master).
Vital and vigorous even when its characters feel scraped of vigor/vitality, Philippe Garrel's latest finds boho Parisians facing the ends of marriages, affairs, and the feasibility of bohemian existence itself.
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Whether you think of 4/20 as a celebration for an oppressed minority or just another day for layabouts to get high, this weekend stoners across the country got baked. So from the east to west, from states with legal access to medical marijuana to states without, here are the highest people across America.
Firenze Osteria, Fabio Viviani's North Hollywood restaurant, will close tomorrow, July 31. The restaurant will reopen some time in the future with Viviani as chef, but with new ownership.
Viviani opened Firenze in late 2009, right after his initial ascent to fame on Bravo's fifth season of Top Chef. At the time of its opening, the restaurant was a hit, though Los Angeles Times critic Irene Virbila gave it a poor review, saying "what I didn't expect was a menu so conventional it reads like a tourist trap — mostly generic dishes from no particular region. Italian Food for Dummies." LA Weekly couldn't improve upon that opinion, and never wrote about the restaurant.
After one year of operations in the western end of Culver City, Red Bread, the small-batch bakery, shop and café, has closed. But don't despair: It will be re-opening in the fall, in a different location.
In the mean time, its popular wild-yeast breads and pastries will still be available at the Wednesday Santa Monica Farmers Market. The Magical Grocery Tour Sunday delivery service and catering will continue as well during the transition.
The reason for the closing? According to Rose Lawrence, "While we are so thankful for the community that grew with us this past year in Culver City, we have split the seams in our tiny shop though and it is time to move to bigger digs." Tiny is right: It had just one communal table with 10 small stools, plus a few outdoor tables. After just 12 months at that location, Lawrence and business partner/husband David Lawrence decided now was the time to go.
Pepy's Galley, the circa-1960 diner attached to AMF Mar Vista Lanes, lately feels more like a funeral parlor than the friendly neighborhood joint its lifelong customers remember. That's because the nautical-themed coffee shop is facing eviction on June 30, when BowlmorAMF, the country's largest 10-pin bowling center operator, takes ownership of the building and begins major renovations. Those renovations include turning Pepy's Galley into an in-house food service that caters to the bowling center.
Since the news broke a little more than a month ago, neighborhood crowds have been pouring into Pepy's brown vinyl booths and bar stools to show their support and order a patty melt - just $6.95, made with 13 ounces of ground chuck and served on toasted sourdough - or a bowl of the famous house-made chili one last time.
Chef Miles Thompson, center, in the kitchen at Allumette
Yesterday afternoon the news came in that Allumette, the Echo Park restaurant, will close at the end of next month. It's a surprise, certainly, but also almost as much of a surprise that the restaurant lasted as long as it did.
I don't say this dismissively - I'm a fan of chef Miles Thompson's cooking, a fan of bartender Serena Herrick's cocktails, and a fan in general of weird little restaurants in up-and-coming neighborhoods that play by their own rules. But those restaurants are a gamble, always. From the first meal I ate at Allumette I worried that its days were numbered, not because it was flawed (which it was, slightly) but because it was so unexpected.
"I feel very lucky to have had the opportunity to explore cuisine at Allumette and can't express enough how much I appreciate those who have championed us over the last year and a half," Thompson told me yesterday. "It has been an incredible experience."
The supposedly cursed Old Town Pasadena address of 42 S. De Lacey Ave. claimed another restaurant casualty this weekend: three-year-old Haven Gastropub + Brewery, which unexpectedly closed its doors on Saturday, May 17.
Customers Sunday were greeted with a sign on the door that said "Go to Lucky Baldwins" and by afternoon, a status update on the brewpub's Facebook page clarified that they had to shut their doors "due to circumstances beyond our control."
Few things are as bittersweet as witnessing the closing of your favorite neighborhood restaurant. And the mood in the air was decidedly bittersweet yesterday at Ernie Jr.'s Taco House in Eagle Rock, which will close its doors today, Saturday, April 19. So, if you're going, get there quickly.
Ernie Cruz, the owner of Ernie Jr.'s, made his way around the dining room shaking hands and talking to long-time customers who thanked him for sharing his restaurant over the years. Customers like Viela Kawamoto brought photos shot over the restaurant's 41-year run to have Cruz sign. Kawamoto, who started going to Ernie Jr.'s Pasadena location almost 60 years ago, said visiting Ernie Jr.'s "was like coming home." She's visited the restaurant 10 times over the last two weeks since hearing about the closing.
We give protected designation to buildings, to natural wonders and to battlefields. We do not, for the most part, bestow such honors on bars. This is a shame - especially in L.A., where our vintage bars hold a wealth of culture in their booze-soaked floors and sticky vinyl booths.
One such Los Angeles haunt is the Formosa Cafe, the 89-year-old bar on the corner of Santa Monica Boulevard and Formosa Avenue in West Hollywood. The Formosa has deep history as the favored bar for many, many golden-age movie stars, whose photos line the walls. Made up in part of an old Red Car trolley, the red-and-black - lacquered interior has barely changed since its heyday. In 1991, when the Formosa was threatened with demolition to make way for a parking structure, the city's Cultural Heritage Advisory Board declared it a landmark, cementing the bar's status as a protected pocket of Old Hollywood amidst the towering big-box consumerism of new Hollywood.
The problem is that, despite its history, not many people were eating there. So recently an innovative partnership was formed, between Formosa's owner, Vincent Jung, Umami Burger founder Adam Fleischman, and Red Medicine's chef Jordan Kahn and manager Noah Ellis. The Formosa itself wouldn't change, but Kahn and co. would install a chef in the kitchen turning out Red Medicine - esque food.
It's been just under a year since Innovative Dining Group opened Chi Lin, the modern Chinese restaurant in West Hollywood. But yesterday the news came that the restaurant had closed after service on Sunday night.
In its short run, Chi Lin went through a couple of chefs, including Yujean Kang, who is well known for Yujean Kang's Gourmet Chinese, which he ran in Pasadena for more than 20 years. After he left, Tyson Wong took over the kitchen. Dishes such as crab and uni xiao long bao and BBQ orange baby back ribs seemed to be catering to a tourist crowd. The decor was mind-bending, the food expensive. But despite the hype and location, it didn't work in the long run.
I got your text this morning. I know it's been a while since we've seen each other, but I was a little shocked to hear the news: "This message is to notify our loyal customers that Zinga will be sadly closing our doors tomorrow night, Sat. Jan. 25th."
The text came suddenly at 11:48 this morning, and without any warning. I guess I should've seen the signs that what we had wouldn't last, dear Zinga!, but I just wish you would've told me in person. I'm hurt not only because you ended our relationship by text message, but that you did so by mass text. OK, not even a mass text - an automated text. It's like you don't even know who I am anymore, Zinga!.
It's true that in the beginning I was loyal to you. When you moved into my neighborhood in early 2013, I would walk all the way to see you nearly every day on my lunch break. I craved you at all hours of the day. I couldn't get enough of you, Zinga!. Yes, you were cultured, and you were sweet and you were new in town, and if you must know, yes I found you incredibly luscious and fruity.
December rounds out a year that's seen the closure of longtime institutions like Empress Pavilion and the introduction of restaurants that have shown a lot of promise in becoming classics in their own right. While it's too early to say which among the new will become a favorite, there's been no shortage of new restaurants vying for consideration.
Downtown alone has seen the addition of several new spots for food and drink. DTLA Cheese opened inside Grand Central Market during the week of Christmas. The Must Bar reopened after a three-year hiatus, straying not too far from the Historic Core. The list of nightcap options in Little Tokyo grew with the Wolf & Crane. On the other side of downtown, the dining options at FIGat7th expanded with the launch of Torta Company and Loteria Grill as well as Twist & Grill. Check out what other restaurants have opened -- and closed -- around town.
All summer long, cocktail-loving Westsiders have been eagerly anticipating Brilliantshine, the new spot from prolific mixology masters Julian Cox and Josh Goldman, and it's finally here. On Tuesday, Aug. 19, the watering hole will officially open its doors in the Santa Monica courtyard behind Tinga, former home of the popular...
Remember last week when we got all giddy over the fact that L.A. had more restaurants than any other city on Bon Appétit's list of 50 nominees for the title of Best New Restaurant in America? Well, today the final list of the ten best new restaurants in the nation...
Have you ever had a seven-minute egg? Wait. Have you ever heard of Nevada County? Well, it’s between Sac and Tahoe, and if you’re up for about a seven-hour road trip and you're willing to believe me that this place is nicer than Tahoe, and about an hour closer, well,...