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Best Things To Do This Week In Los Angeles And Southern California: May 2 - 5

A masked Mexican wrestler flies through the air above the ropes of a wrestling ring.
Lucha va Voom returns with its Cinco de Mayan celebration on May 5 and 6 at the Mayan Theatre.
(Hon Hoang
EnFlight Design)
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Watch luchadores and burlesque performers at Lucha va Voom’s Cinco de Mayan. Binge film after film at the Israel Film Festival and the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival. Indulge in fried foods and carnival rides at the L.A. County Fair.

a large shark underwater
The Natural History Museum opens the exhibition, 'L.A. Underwater: The Prehistoric Sea Beneath Us.'
(Courtesy of the Natural History Museum)

Monday, May 2 (Opening)

L.A. Underwater: The Prehistoric Sea Beneath Us
Natural History Museum
900 Exposition Blvd., Exposition Park
Immerse yourself in this exhibition that explores the L.A. area during a period when it was submerged beneath the prehistoric Pacific Ocean for more than 90 million years. View nearly 40 fossils, underwater habitats, prehistoric animals like a shark bigger than a city bus, and the legacy of fossil fuels. The exhibition is included in museum admission.
COST: $7 - $15 admission; MORE INFO 

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Monday, May 2; 9 a.m.

The Batman Movies You've Never Seen - The Insane Filipino Batman Films!
The Museum of Latin American Art presents a series of events in May for its 2022 Asian, Pacific Islander, Latinx Festival. On Monday, view a special episode of Superhero Stuff You Should Know, a deep-dive comic book and movie podcast, presented by Ben Wan and Andrew Bush. The prerecorded episode focuses on crazy Batman films from the Philippines from the ’70s.

Tuesday, May 3; 8:30 p.m.

My Friends Kill with Dan Telfer
The Glendale Room
127 Artsakh Ave., Glendale
Telfer promises a night of jokes that murder with sets by Laurie Kilmartin, Peter Kim, Maggie Maye, Joel Kim Booster and Adam Conover.

Wednesday, May 4; 12 p.m. PT

Can We All Live in the Best Version of Los Angeles?
Zócalo’s latest program explores many of L.A.’s dichotomies, from housing to health and wealth. Panelists Gloria Gonzalez of the Youth Justice Coalition and Sissy Trinh of the Southeast Asian Community Alliance discuss how individuals and organizations are working to harness L.A.’s many resources to solve its worst problems.

Wednesday, May 4; 8 p.m.

Welcome to Night Vale
The Lodge Room
104 N. Ave., 56 2nd floor, Highland Park
The genre-bending horror-comedy podcast, starring Cecil Baldwin as a radio host who delivers both the mundane and bizarro news to the fictional desert town of Night Vale, is currently on tour ahead of its 10th anniversary. Disparition, the artist that composes all of the music for the podcast, performs live, and singer/songwriter Erin McKeown opens the show and performs as the live “weather” segment. The Lodge Room show is a standalone story that will never be told on the podcast.
COST: $30 - $35; MORE INFO

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Wednesday, May 4; 7:30 p.m.

Breaking Bread
Skirball Cultural Center
2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd., Brentwood
Microbiologist Dr. Nof Atamna-Ismaeel was the first Muslim Arab to win MasterChef Israel. This documentary traces her quest to make social change through food, particularly through the A-Sham Arabic Food Festival. During the festival, pairs of Jewish and Arab chefs collaborate on dishes such as kishek (a Syrian yogurt soup) and qatayef (a dessert typically eaten during Ramadan). Directed by Beth Elise Hawk, the documentary shows what happens when we focus on people rather than politics or religion. A conversation with filmmakers follows the screening, and sample varieties of L.A.-based Social Hummus on the way out.
COST: $10 - $18; MORE INFO

Wednesday, May 4; 7:30 p.m.

Just Another Girl on the I.R.T. 
Ted Mann Theater at the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures 
6067 Wilshire Blvd., Mid-Wilshire
Writer-director-producer Leslie Harris’ 1992 film remains a frank, challenging and humorous coming-of-age story of a young Black woman (Ariyan A. Johnson). The film is still radical in its depiction of sexuality and for the complex character who eschews typical narratives of victimhood. The Academy Film Archive also premieres a restoration of Harris’s Never Forget, a documentary short on the role of the church in African American history. Harris will appear in-person at the screening.
COST: $5 - $10; MORE INFO

Thursday, May 5 - Friday, May 6

Cinco de Mayan
The Mayan Theatre
1038 South Hill St., downtown L.A.
Lucha VaVOOM’s variety show returns for two nights with Mexican masked wrestling, burlesque dancers, aerialists, comedians, the danza Azteca group Xipe Totec, Grandeza Mexicana Folk Ballet Company, and the Long Beach car club The Crusaders. The event is 21+.

Thursday, May 5 - Thursday, May 26

35th Israel Film Festival
Various Locations / Hybrid
The showcase of Israeli cinema and television opens with director Avi Nesher’s anti-war epic, Image of Victory, which examines Israel’s 1948 War of Independence told from both sides of the conflict. The festival includes five U.S. premieres and 14 Los Angeles premieres among the 30 features, documentaries and short films.
COST: Tickets start at $10 - $15; MORE INFO 

Thursday, May 5 - Monday, May 30

LA County Fair
1101 W. McKinley Ave., Pomona 
The fair returns in-person this year (and thankfully not during the dog days of summer). Get out there and enjoy carnival rides, agricultural exhibitions, the petting zoo, esports/gaming, the flower and garden pavilion, and of course, the deep-fried foods.
COST: $8 - $20 for single-day admission; MORE INFO

Thursday, May 5 - Friday, May 13

38th Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival 
Various locations
Visual Communications (VC) presents in-person and virtual screenings and programs for the 38th edition of the festival, which celebrates Asian Pacific American filmmakers and artists with important and entertaining films and content. The opening day lineup includes the L.A. premiere of Every Day In Kaimukī, directed by Alika Tengan, and the world premiere works from the Armed with the Camera Fellowship. The festival’s Legacy Award will be presented to filmmaker Mira Nair.
COST: $20 single tickets; MORE INFO

Thursday, May 5; 7:30 p.m.

The Drop: The Head and the Heart
The Grammy Museum
800 W. Olympic Blvd., downtown L.A.
The indie folk band discusses the new album Every Shade of Blue with moderator Scott Goldman, followed by a performance. (Also happening at the Grammy Museum this week: Celebrating 100 Years of Peggy Lee on Tuesday.)

Viewing Pick

The Pentaverate
Mike Myers returns to several roles in this Netflix comedy miniseries. One of his characters is a Canadian journalist who stumbles on The Pentaverate, a secret society of five men who began influencing world events for the greater good since the Black Plague of 1347. He finds himself torn between uncovering the truth and possibly saving the world. The series also features appearances by Ken Jeong, Keegan-Michael Key and Debi Mazar. The Pentaveratedebuts on Netflix on May 5.

Two people toasting, clinking their drinks over plates of tacos and other foods.
Tallulah's celebrates Cinco de Mayo on Thursday from 4 to 9 p.m.
(Meghan Reardon)

Dine and Drink Deals

Check out the 411 on restaurant, bar and food happenings in SoCal this week:

  • In honor of Asian American Pacific Islander month, the Japanese American Cultural & Community Center in Little Tokyo presents a four-week Rising Chef series that features four emerging Asian American chefs preparing a five-course pre-fixe menu and a signature House of Suntory cocktail pairing. Chefs in the series are David Nguyen, Kevin Lee, Tway Nguyen and Chris Ono. 
  • The pop-up restaurant Capri opens for lunch and dinner at Eataly Los Angeles on Monday, May 2. The concept is inspired by the Mediterranean island of the same name and regional dishes of the Amalfi Coast. Dishes include scialatielli allo scoglio, a traditional pasta dish featuring fresh seafood served in a light tomato sauce; branzino Acqua Pazza and a caprese cart.
  • Celebrate Cinco de Mayo, which commemorates Mexico's victory over the French at the Battle of Puebla in 1862, at any number of restaurants and bars across L.A./SoCal, including: 
    • Tallula’s in Santa Monica holds a Cinco de Mayo celebration on Thursday from 4 to 9 p.m. Nosh on nachos sencillo and chicken tinga tostadas while sipping margarita pitchers. Reservations are available for the main dining room, while walk-ins can hang out at the bar with a taco cart and satellite bar. A mariachi band plays all night long.
    • Trejo’s Tacos in Hollywood offers an old-school Strawberry Fantasy Jalapeño Margarita ($13) made with strawberry soda (Fanta), jalapeño, tequila blanco, and lime.  
    • Desert 5 Spot in Hollywood celebrates with a complimentary three-hour open bar in partnership with Avion Cristalino Tequila from 8 p.m. Sip on speciality cocktails while listening to a live mariachi band.
    • Descanso Restaurant in Costa Mesa offers happy hour specials from 11:30 a.m. to close and live music on the patio beginning at 6 p.m. Enjoy Central Mexican street-inspired cuisine, including the choriqueso verde, featuring green chorizo, poblano suiza, tres quesos, avocado toreado salsa, spring onion, and serrano chiles served with flour tortillas, and happy hour drink specials including $4 bottled beers, $5 draft beers, $5 wines by the glass, and an array of $6 and $7 signature margaritas.  
    • The Bamboo Club in Long Beach dishes out a creative lineup of Mexi-Tiki lunch and dinner items (Korean BBQ steak tacos, Kalua pork torta ahogadas) and agave-tiki cocktails.