Jewish Journal

Picks and Clicks for Jan. 10-16, 2009: Art, film, secrets and Limmud

by Dikla Kadosh and Lilly Fowler

Posted on Jan. 9, 2009 at 5:20 pm

Artwork by Joel Shapiro<br />
See Thursday

Artwork by Joel Shapiro
See Thursday


"The Baader Meinhof Complex," "Everlasting Moments," "Gomorra," "I've Loved You So Long" and "Waltz With Bashir." Whether you've seen them all or fallen behind on your movie-going duties this season, it's officially time to sit up and pay attention. These five films have been nominated for a Golden Globe in the foreign language category, and American Cinematheque and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association are giving Angelenos the opportunity to meet the filmmakers at the Foreign Language Film Nominees Symposium. That means folks like Israeli documentarian Ari Folman will be on hand to discuss the work that has brought him and his fellow filmmakers from France, Germany, Italy and Sweden international acclaim. Sat. 1 p.m. Free. Egyptian Theatre, 6712 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood. (323) 461-2020. http://www.goldenglobes.org.

Come see the work of a man who was once branded a Jewish pornographer. Influential Austrian playwright Arthur Schnitzler wrote "La Ronde" in 1897 with the hope of showing society the ways -- both good and bad -- in which sexuality can overcome class barriers. The controversial play is being brought back to life through an original multimedia presentation, which will undoubtedly demonstrate how some aspects of life will always remain provocative. Sat. 8 p.m. (Thu.-Sat.) 3 p.m. (Sun.). Through Feb. 1. $20. Zephyr Theatre, 7456 Melrose Ave., Los Angeles. (323) 960-7792. http://www.plays411.com.


This February marks Charles Darwin's 200th birthday. To commemorate the man who forever changed the way we look at monkeys, A Shenere Velt Gallery at Workmen's Circle/Arbeter Ring challenged artists to ponder and react to Darwin's legacy for a juried exhibition. The result is "R U Evolved? Artists Reflect on Darwin @ 200," a varied array of artwork from 22 artists who responded to the scientist's conclusion that the world we live in has "no design, no purpose, no evil, no good, nothing but blind, pitiless indifference." Meet the artists and engage them in a discussion about their own creation process -- whether it's evolutionary or divinely inspired -- at the opening reception tonight. Sun. 3-6 p.m. Free. Through Feb. 27. Arbeter Ring, 1525 S. Robertson Blvd., Los Angeles. (310) 552-2007.

At the heart of LimmudLA is the pursuit of learning, but there is much more to the Costa Mesa conference, taking place Feb. 13-16, than just a marathon of lectures. "A Taste of Limmud" is your chance to find out exactly what takes place at this buzz-generating gathering of SoCal Jews of all stripes. Tonight's pared-down version will feature several presenters, time to mingle and refreshments. If you like what you see -- and learn -- you can sign up for the real thing. Sun. 7:30-9:30 p.m. Free. Valley Village (address provided upon receipt of R.S.V.P.). Taste@LimmudLA.org. http://www.limmudla.org.

This Sunday marks the seventh anniversary of the opening of the Guantanamo Bay detention center, and Angelenos are gathering for an Interfaith Learning on the Struggle Against Torture (Jewish Texts). Attorney Michael Rapkin, a member of the ACLU who helped free Yousef Abdullah Al-Rabaish from Guantanamo Bay, will deliver the keynote address. Local rabbis will study Jewish texts in an attempt to answer "The Question of Self Defense and the Ticking Bomb." Sponsored by Beth Shir Sholom, Rabbis for Human Rights and Interfaith Communities United for Justice and Peace. Sun. 2-4 p.m. Free. Beth Shir Sholom, 1827 California Ave., Santa Monica. (310) 453-3361. http://www.bethshirsholom.org.


Valley Beth Shalom's Rabbi Edward Feinstein, author of the National Jewish Book Award finalist, "Tough Questions Jews Ask," and named one of America's top 25 rabbis by Newsweek, has just released "Capturing the Moon," a book filled with 36 classic Jewish folktales arranged under six thematic sections: What Really Matters in Life?, Doing What's Right, It's Up to You, Teachers and Friends, Hidden Truths, and the Miracles of Jewish Life. Lucky for us, the Rosenkrantz Library is hosting a "Meet the Author" event with Feinstein, giving us a prime opportunity to soak up all the wisdom. Tue. 7 p.m. Free. JCC at Milken, 22622 Vanowen St., West Hills. (818) 464-3281. http://www.jccatmilken.org.

Successful television executives and style mavens Rita Mauceri and Elycia Rubin have fashion tips for women of every shape -- pear, stick, hourglass and inverted triangle. The authors of "Frumpy to Foxy in 15 Minutes Flat" are dishing out advice on how to accentuate your best features in "Curves Rule and Flat Is Fabulous: Sexy, Stylish Looks for Every Figure." Meet Mauceri, who has produced fashion programs for E!, TLC and HGTV, and Rubin, one of the founders of The Style Network and the former fashion director for E! Come with a list of style questions -- these smart and sassy ladies seem to have all the answers. Tue. 7:30 p.m. Free. Barnes & Noble at The Grove, 189 The Grove Drive, Los Angeles. (323) 525-0270. http://www.bn.com.


Etgar Keret decided to direct "Jellyfish," a film his wife, Shira Geffen, wrote because nobody else wanted to do it. Keret, who rose to fame as a short story writer, had never directed a feature before but took on the task for what he says is a selfish reason: he really wanted to see the film version. "Jellyfish," the story of three Tel Aviv women's intersecting lives, garnered much critical acclaim and won the Camera d'Or Prize at the Cannes Film Festival in 2007. This screening will be followed by a book signing and discussion with Keret. Wed. 7:15 p.m. $10 (students), $25 (general). American Jewish University, 15600 Mulholland Drive, Bel Air. (310) 440-1246. http://www.ajula.edu.

Believe it or not, the current economic crisis has a silver lining. Those looking to buy real estate, for example, might have a good deal on their hands. What's more, Richard M. Gollis, co-founder of the Concord Group, a leading real estate consultancy, is ready to offer up the "2009 Commercial and Residential Forecast." Share breakfast with those who are in the know about the golden opportunities that might emerge in the coming year, despite all the gloom and doom associated with the current economic downturn. Presented by the Jewish Federation of Orange County and part of the Real Estate Council Breakfast Network. Wed. 7:30-9:30 a.m. Free for REC members; $50 for all others. Hilton Costa Mesa, 3050 Bristol St., Costa Mesa. (949) 435-3484. http://www.jewishorangecounty.org/realestate.


The word prom conjures up different memories for everyone: slipping into an extravagant princess gown fit for a Disney movie, the exhilaration of winning the coveted prom queen crown, going stag with other dateless friends, lugging your intoxicated best friend to the bathroom.... Whether prom was the glittering highlight of your youth or a disaster you wish you could expunge from your memory, wouldn't it be fun to do it all over again now that you're older, wiser and more comfortable in your own skin? ATID thought so. The "Blue and White Ball: Prom Night 2009" will have everything a prom should -- DJ, dancing, appetizers, dessert buffet, a prom king and queen ceremony and door prizes for those wearing blue and white in honor of Israel. This bash will be different in that you won't be seeing anyone under 21 (or over 39), you can sip alcoholic beverages from a cup instead of sneaking sips from a flask, and, most significantly, no dates are required! Thu. 8 p.m. Pre-Jan. 13: $40 (members), $46 (guests). At the door: $55. Sinai Temple, 10400 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles. (310) 481-3244. http://www.atidla.com.

Joel Shapiro's work has been showcased in such cities as London, Seoul, Tel Aviv and Amsterdam. He was also the subject of a major mid-career survey organized by the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York. L.A. Louver is presenting an exhibition of new work by the world-renowned artist, a series of small and large sculptures made of bronze, wood or painted wood, which "bend, twist, pivot and stretch -- and possess an interior tension and force that reaches outwards." See them for yourself at the artist's reception. Thu. 6 -8 p.m. Through Feb. 14. Free. L.A. Louver, 45 N. Venice Blvd., Venice. (310) 822-4955. http://www.lalouver.com.

President-elect Barack Obama may have chosen Rahm Emanuel to be his chief of staff, but Jews still have a long way to go before they stop paying a high price for their lack of political power. Or so argues Ruth Wisse, a professor of Yiddish and comparative literature at Harvard University. According to Wisse, too often Jews have become the target of scapegoating, and political weakness lies at the heart of much of the violence. Hear it for yourself at a presentation of "Jews and Power." Thu. 7:30 p.m. $12. Stephen S. Wise Temple, 15500 Stephen S. Wise Drive, Los Angeles. (888) 380-9473. http://www.WiseLA.org/centerforjewishlife.

"The Secret" was a worldwide phenomenon that made the Law of Attraction a household phrase. If it revolutionized your life or simply gave you food for thought, you might be interested to hear what comes after the Secret has been revealed. "Beyond the Secret" is an exclusive, in-theater presentation that explores the life philosophy to a greater extent via a panel of acclaimed life coaches and motivational gurus led by Larry King. Screened for one night only, the film features a discussion between experts who founded companies such as LifeSuccess and Dream University, as well as seminars titled, "Mental Toughness" and "Science of Success." It also includes clips from the soon-to-be-released DVD "Beyond the Secret," as well as scenes from an interactive discussion with the audience from a Royce Hall screening. "This Beyond the Secret event is packed with practical advice that you can understand and implement immediately to create the life you've always wanted," said Bob Proctor, a teacher of the Law of Attraction. Thu. 8 p.m. $18. Visit http://www.fathomevents.com for a full list of theaters.

Calling all stifled teens and young adults! Share your songs, poetry, spoken word and, most of all, what it means to you to be an American at the Skirball Cultural Center's Open-Mic Night. You'll be able to gather inspiration beforehand (the Skirball is now closed Thu. evenings) from the center's photography exhibition "Becoming American: Teenagers and Immigration," which features young immigrants telling their stories in their own words. So there's no excuse not to jump in and share the side of you your middle and high school friends don't get to see often enough. Refreshments will be served. Thu. 5-7 p.m. Free. Skirball Cultural Center, 2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd., Los Angeles. (310) 440-4657. http://www.skirball.org.
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