See Spot pray. Blessings go to the dogs today as Newport Dunes Resort's annual Top Dog Fashion Show commences with a blessing of the animals performed by a Catholic priest, a Protestant minister and a rabbi. A canine costume contest follows, with categories including best formal wear, best lingerie/pajamas and the ever-controversial swimsuit competition. Proceeds from the event benefit the Orange County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and Companion Pet Retreat. Head to O.C. to join the madness.
1131 Back Bay Drive, Newport Beach. (949) 729-3863.
Â¿Como se dice, JAP? Learn how to say Jewish Argentine Princess in Spanish today at the Egyptian Theatre. The last film to be screened on this final day of the American Cinematheque's "New Argentine Cinema" series is "Valentin." Directed by Alejandro Agresti, it's an 8-year-old boy's coming-of-age tale. Precocious Valentin, whose parents are largely absent from his life, lives with his moody grandmother and dreams of being an astronaut. Despite his grandmother's and father's portrayals of his mother as a "Jewish princess," he also dreams of the day they will be reunited.
7:30 p.m. $9. In Spanish with English subtitles. Lloyd E. Rigler Theatre at the Egyptian, 6712 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood. (323) 466-3456.
Steady yourself. "Trembling Before G-d" came out. The
"unkosher sex" documentary that bared the stories of gay and lesbian Chasidic
and Orthodox Jews was released on DVD last week. In proper DVD fashion, there
are plenty of extras packed into the deluxe two-disc set, including a short
feature titled "Trembling on the Road," about the movement of the film around
the world; an interview with the director Sandi Simcha DuBowski; extra footage
with Rabbi Steve Greenberg, the first openly gay Orthodox rabbi; and a guide to
the atonement ceremony for sexual sins. $39.95. www.amazon.com
Out this month is Rochelle Krich's new Molly Blume
mystery novel, "Dream House." This latest potboiler has Ms. Blume investigating
increasingly violent vandalism in Los Angeles' wealthiest neighborhoods. Krich
is hitting the road for signings all around SoCal, including stops this week in
Tustin, San Diego and Encino (on Oct. 30). Die-hard fans oughta pick it up today
to meet her with prepared questions (or just properly gush) this Thursday.
$24.95. www.amazon.com, www.rochellekrich.com
You've got industry questions, she's got answers. Paramount President Sherry Lansing grants us an audience this evening at the University of Judaism (UJ). Publicist Michael Levine moderates the 90-minute Q & A, sponsored by the UJ's Department of Continuing Education as part of its "Conversations With..." series. A word of advice: leave the screenplay at home. That's just tacky.
8 p.m. $10. 15600 Mulholland Drive, Bel Air. R.S.V.P., (310) 440-1246.
Shelley Gazin hasn't completely lost her optimism in the years since 1983, when she traveled through the West Bank photographing Jews and Palestinians. "These images are my remnants of hope," she has said about "Reconstructing the West Bank: Photographs by Shelley Gazin," displayed on the three floors of the new Yitzhak Rabin Hillel Center for Jewish Life at UCLA. In one picture an Israeli boy holds a machine gun, in another a pregnant woman smiles easily at the camera. The images are taken from one day of apparent peace in May of '83, summoning questions about how much has changed or hasn't.
Runs through Dec. 4. 9 a.m.-9 p.m. (Sunday-Thursday), 9 a.m.-3 p.m. (Friday), Saturday by appointment. 574 Hilgard Ave., Westwood. (310) 827-0833.
In: Menopause. Out: Menstruation. Five Minutes Ago: Modesty. Somehow, suddenly, hot flashes, et al, are the subject of public conversation -- at least that's the case with two plays currently on stage in this city. There's "Is it Hot in Here ... Or Is It Me?" and "Menopause the Musical." The two shows lead with the message that there ought to be no shame in this natural process.
"Is it Hot in Here ... Or Is It Me?": $25. Egyptian Arena Theatre, 1625 N. Las Palmas, Hollywood. (866) 811-4111. Runs through Nov. 23.
"Menopause the Musical": $38.25-$42.50. Coronet Theatre, 366 N. La Cienega Blvd., Los Angeles. (310) 657-7377.