The Bel-Air Film Festival shines a bright light on film reels from around the world, offering a diverse schedule of independent shorts, documentaries, and feature-length films. The fest kicks off with My Father's Will, a U.S. feature that centers around a wealthy businessman who, in accordance with his father's last wishes, must distance himself from his affluent identity and hefty bank account for one month of self-discovery, reflection, and, most likely, frozen TV dinners. Starting Thursday, things heat up with four to five showings a day, including The Italian Key from Finland and Trophy Kids from American director Josh Sugarman. Friday and Saturday's festivities conclude with complimentary wine-tasting events before after parties and competitive Kurosawa name-droppings take center stage. Monday wraps up the whole festival with a screening of Face to Face, a film many consider to be the Australian version of 12 Angry Men.
Built in 1929 as one of the first four original structures on UCLA’s campus in Westwood, the two towers of Royce Hall are now the defining image of the school. Named for California-born philosopher Josiah Royce, the looming brick building is modeled after Milan’s San Ambrogio Church. In the many decades since its introduction, the popular events space has undergone seismic retrofitting, and now boasts some 1,800 seats, nearly all with perfect sightlines to the deep stage. The annual events calendar features a variety of fine art performances with world-class talent ranging from speakers to dance to contemporary and classical music. Entertainers use the stage to tell stories and jokes, radio personalities bring their live shows through Royce Hall, and students have the opportunity to witness never-before-seen productions throughout the year. Patrons can customize their own subscription packages, and students receive discounts to every event.
Eat|See|Hear offers an unparalleled outdoor movie experience by screening new and classic films in HD on an inflatable, wrinkle-free projection screen standing 3.5 stories tall and 52 feet wide. Using a 30,000-watt sound system, each venue is custom-calibrated to ensure a decibel-appropriate listening experience for audiences lounging on blankets or in lawn chairs. Local food trucks remain onsite during events to dish out cuisine, and pre-film performances by up-and-coming bands get audiences pumped up and help loosen any cobwebs built up inside the ears.
Goodwill towards man goes hand in hand with a cold pint of good beer, a fact not lost on the organizers of Sin City Beer Fest—a regular celebration of fermented beverages that raises money for local charities. On-hand beers come courtesy of breweries from around the world, with regular contributors that include Yanjing Beer in China, Mortiz in Barcelona, and Lost Coast Brewery in Northern California. Guests enjoy floral hops and refreshing bubbles in swanky environs throughout the city, mingling in poolside cabanas, verdant courtyards, and the Denny's that Frank Sinatra classed up by accidentally haunting.
Whether competing, hosting, or judging meals on Food Network, chef Aar?n S?nchez is a much loved culinary personality for in part for his enthusiasm, his love of guitars and motorcycles, and of course, his unmatched Latin fusion cuisine. At Crossroads Restaurant at House of Blues, he's designed his signature menu from the ground up, filling it with, in his words, "American classics through my eyes. Reimagined. Reinvented."
Here, the parade of unique eats starts right at the top of the menu with a cornbread appetizer studded with jalapenos and blanketed in maple butter. His citrus-marinated pork chop is rubbed with adobo seasoning and served atop a black-eyed pea and butternut squash picadillo, and shrimp po-boys evoke the Big Easy. Since the dining room is right next to the House of Blues main stage, even concertgoers have enough time to finish up with a bourbon bread pudding or a slice of key lime pie.
Create Your Own Cake Bakery provides the ingredients and the know how, but the customers supply the inspiration. This bakery, which was on Cupcake Wars, specializes in custom cakes. Its list of cake and frosting flavors invites people to mix and match to create a dessert worthy of the biggest craving. Try a pineapple coconut, lemon, or red velvet cake and top it with a fruity, chocolate, or buttercream frosting. If you'd prefer bite-size pastries, dig into a chocolate espresso cupcake or a tropical cupcake with a sugar flower on top. Prepare your treats for a party by piling them up on a tower and interspersing them with brownies and cookies, or give a loved one a gift basket.