Situated on the rooftop of a local parking garage, Electric Dusk Drive-In is a high-altitude destination for a classic cinematic experience. The soundtracks of time-tested favorites and current releases stream out of car radios tuned to the theater’s FM station. In front of the screen, a spacious patch of astroturf grows from the concrete, inviting on-foot viewers to lounge in camp chairs as they watch. Carhops weave from vehicle to vehicle to deliver orders of popcorn, burgers, and sodas, as well as eclectic treats such as oatmeal-cookie pies, cups of ramen, and honey-glazed film reels.
Formed in 2001 by producers and ardent horror buffs Rachel Belofsky and Ross Martin, Screamfest gives the corn-syrup-drenched cleavers of future visionaries a chance to shine while talking shop with the legends of the genre. On Saturday, October 20, Dread Central's Sean Decker moderates a Q&A with John Carpenter following a screening of his underrated 1989 film Prince of Darkness. Viewers can also take in an early screening of the wintry abduction thriller The Factory, starring John Cusack. Bruce Spaulding Fuller and Kurt Carley, protégés of the late Stan Winston, are also on hand to impart the fine art of sallow skin and faux viscera during a zombie-makeup demo on Saturday, October 13. Throughout the weeklong festival, dozens of features and short films from future Hitchcocks turn the theater's projected air blood red and shadow black as they compete for the gold-skull trophy. Will Ryan Haysom's neo-giallo short Yellow beat out JessiGotta's Anniversary Dinner, a zombie-apocalyptic commentary on the War on Terror that centers on a marriage gone necrotic? Will the haunting atmosphere and Del Toro–esque mythological flourishes of Aleksander Nordaas's Thale win out over the primal childhood terrors of Steven C. Miller's Under the Bed? The winners will be announced during the closing party and awards ceremony on Saturday, October 20, with all winners receiving an encore screening on Sunday. The runner-up films will be picked off one by one and torn apart in creative ways by an unstoppable, chainsaw-wielding line editor.
Executive chef Kareem Shaw is no stranger to creating memorable fine-dining experiences. He's cooked for governors, senators, congressmen, and even President Barak Obama. At Frame 128 Restaurant, he lends his expertise to menu of fine American fusion food. Here, Shaw crafts a variety of dishes with influences from all over the globe, including appetizers of escargot and oysters, wild boar and kobe beef burgers, and ahi tuna. The menu even includes a selection of flatbread pizzas. To complement bites of filet mignon and wild New Zealand king salmon, the bartenders muddle and swirl a selection of signature cocktails.
The menu's bold flavors and detail-oriented craftsmanship call for an equally swanky environment. To that end, the restaurant's dining rooms and lounges, which are spread over two stories, are characterized by sleek, modern decor. The downstairs Blue Lounge offers clusters of plush couches and round low tables for intimate exchanges, while the upstairs Red Lounge facilitates views of the courtyard, accented by neon-lit surroundings.
A self-described "artist hub," Gallery1548 DTLA supplies creative types with a space to fashion and showcase their latest work. Over the last few years, it's garnered awards as a photography studio specializing in portraiture for individuals and families. Beyond that, however, the gallery—located in a warehouse that's more than 100 years old—can double as a film set, a hardwood studio for dance classes, or a venue for live theatrical performances and rock 'n' roll gigs. Equipped with a top-notch sound system and open bar, Gallery1548 can even host a good old-fashioned soiree.
Tucked away in the kitchen of each Paris Baguette, bakers trained in French techniques craft buttery, flaky croissants and tart crusts, and their success at this has earned attention from the likes of the New York Times. In addition to pastries and sweets such as mocha rice balls, the bakers knead bread for their namesake baguettes and yeasty creations that hold an Asian twist, such as red-bean-paste-filled donuts. The experts also create fondant-cloaked cakes that venture beyond classic flavors into green tea, cappuccino, and sweet potato, delighting partygoers bored of the same laminated sheet cake that makes its appearance at each year’s birthday celebration.
To wash down these treats, patrons sip cups of java or more exotic drinks such as wheatgrass and black-sesame lattes, persimmon smoothies, and bubble tea. At lunchtime, many locations layer sandwiches, filling hungry stomachs with croque monsieurs and baguettes stuffed with chicken and pesto.
When kids spend too much time inside playing video games, parents often encourage them to play outside. Game on Wheelz’s video-gaming bus proposes a compromise: along with three 40-inch flat-screen HDTVs inside the bus, two 50-inch TVs adorn its exterior. Each is equipped with Nintendo Wii, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360 consoles, on which gamers can play titles such as Halo 4 and WWE 13 with wireless controllers. Adult “game coaches” supervise each party on the bus, which runs on a quiet, environmentally friendly propane generator.