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The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus
Starts Friday Dec 25
Various Los Angeles theaters
Terry Gilliam's visually rich follow-up to such cult gems as Brazil (1985), The Adventures of Baron Munchausen (1988), and Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998), The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus stars Christopher Plummer as the immortal Dr. Parnassus. Model-turned-actress Lily Cole stars as his precocious daughter, Valentina, whose bohemian existence has her yearning for an Ikea-inspired lifestyle, which includes falling in love with the mysterious Tony (Heath Ledger). While Ledger's death halfway through production put a wrench in the filming of the modern fable, Gilliam's solution to the actor's conspicuous absence is nothing short of brilliant, rendering the lush, surrealist fantasy even more curious and hypnotic.
- Tanja Laden
The Beaches of Agnès
Laemmle's Sunset 5
8000 Sunset Blvd
The "Agnès" of the title would be the one and only Varda. In this lovely autobiographic portrait, the New Wave's only femme auteur relates her extraordinary life story through telltale photographs, choice film clips, and present-day captures of her whimsy and joie de vivre. Jacques "Umbrellas of Cherbourg" Demy was her husband and memories of the passed-on director tint the picture blue, but, in general, the film captures Varda's omnivorous, onward-we-go spirit as she inhales the world around her. Hardly a recluse, the octogenarian also boasts an incredibly varied rolodex, from Chris Marker and Alain Resnais to Harrison Ford and Jim Morrison.
- Jason Jude Chan
DEEP Holiday Party w/ Mark Farina
Sunday Dec 27 (10pm-4am)
6021 Hollywood Blvd
Chicago-born, but famous for his downtempo influence on the San Francisco house scene, Mark Farina spins a groovilicious set this evening as part of the Deep Holiday Party at Vanguard. Aptly placed on the calendar between the hearty holidays and New Year's Eve shenanigans, Deep brings an evening of laid back goodness, the perfect pre-party for the all-out nightlife in store the following week. Deep creator and resident Marques Wyatt, as well as the Deep All Stars, warm up the evening's festivities.
- Jorge Barriere