Bah humbuggers may avoid the holiday cheer this evening by checking out (or should we say, checking into) "Hotel Room." Directors Cesc Gay and Daniel Gimelberg explore a day in the dingy life of one cheap New York hotel room. On one hot Fourth of July day, its guests include a prostitute and her John, who will learn too late that they are father and daughter; a not-so-happily newlywed couple, and a suicidal cross-dressing weatherman. Opens Dec. 12. $5.50-$8.50. Laemmle Fairfax, 7907 Beverly Blvd., West Hollywood. (323) 655-401
What's with the sudden spate of Christmas icons being played by Jewish performers? First Ed Asner's turn as Santa in "Elf," and today, Media City Ballet's "The Nutcracker" stays on point with a Jewish ballerina dancing the lead female role. Alexandra Stern plays Clara to Raul Machorro Jr.'s Nutcracker Prince in the winter favorite, on stage at the Alex Theatre for two shows today -- and at CSUN's Performing Arts Center from Dec. 19-21. 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. $18-$32. 216 N. Brand Blvd., Glendale. (818) 243-2539.
Able to leap tall buildings in a single bound, it's ... Menorah Man? Leading the pack of Jewish misfit heroes in the fight against a tide of "Jewish Amnesia" is the fiery-armed one himself. Alan Oirich has created the "New Jewish Hero Corps" comic book series, featuring Menorah Man, a superhero able to grow eight flame-throwing arms and shoot fire from his feet, thus giving him the power of flight. The first book is now out, just in time for Chanukah. $3.95. www.jewishsuperhero.com
Great band, great venue, great title. Tonight, The Klezmer Conservatory Band settles into the Walt Disney Concert Hall for "Oy, Chanukah." Arrangements range from a capella, to big band, to traditional in this evening of klezmer music, infused with touches of jazz and hip-hop. 8 p.m. $20-$65. 111 S. Grand Ave., Los Angeles. (323) 850-2000.
Last night was Klezmer. Tonight, it's ska and African dance drumming. REDCAT, the Roy and Edna Disney CalArts Theater, at the Walt Disney Concert Hall presents "Reggae Chanukah" for two nights only, beginning this eve. The show merges reggae and Jewish music sounds in line with the theme of a "stand up for your rights" Chanukah. Dec. 17 and 18. 7:30 p.m. $12-$18. 111 S. Grand Ave., Los Angeles. (213) 237-2800.
Tonight's chore of Chanukah gift wrapping goes better with some theme music. Check out musicians Jonathan Harkham and David Brook's new CD of traditional Jewish music, "Darkcho." Setting this one apart is an emphasis on songs and prayers you know, performed and produced with an uncommon and stirring simplicity. $14.99. www.darkcho.com
Celebrate your Jewish heritage with "one badass Heeb" this Chanukah eve. "The Hebrew Hammer" opens in theaters today, bringing grown-up Jewsploitation fun to the big screen. Adam Goldberg plays Mordechai Jefferson Carver, an exaggerated Jewish action hero (in the vein of '70s blaxploitation films) on a mission to save Chanukah. Support this film that had a battle of its own in trying to get a distribution deal. Laemmle's Sunset 5, Los Angeles; Laemmle's Playhouse 7, Pasadena; and Laemmle's Town Center 5, Encino. www.laemmle.com
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