Let's cut to the chase here. Lots of cool stuff to do that doesn't cost much. Here are our recommendations.
House @ Red Vic (Fri. and Sat.)
"Japanese hallucinatory slapstick horror movies don't always make the trip to America; it took Nobuhiko Obayashi's House
more than 30 years. But it's currently enjoying an arthouse cult-in-the-making victory lap after being released stateside in 2010. Here's a tip: If you think you're the type who might enjoy Japanese hallucinatory slapstick horror movies, you are. The plot is strange: A house kills schoolgirls. A piano has teeth. Of course the plot is strange: Obayashi asked his 7-year-old daughter for some ideas and she, perhaps understandably, came up with a domicile that eats people. Obayashi himself added the surreal filmmaking techniques, like lots of animation when there shouldn't be any animation. His primary experience, up to that point, had been filming Japanese cologne commercials starring Charles Bronson, so we can understand his need to napalm entire fields of cinematic convention and tradition. The film plays at the Red Vic
Friday and Saturday, times vary." -- Michael Leaverton
Marcus Shelby and street art @ the de Young (Fri.)
This year, the de Young is taking an extended look at street art, via works from the book Street Art San Francisco: Mission Muralismo
. This evening, as part of its happy hour series Friday Nights at the de Young
, the museum hosts projections of artwork from Muralismo
and music by local jazz great Marcus Shelby
. Shelby will present a piece called "MLK and Jazz," a tribute to the civil rights leader and the movement he helped inspire. Other activities
include lectures on billboard "improvement" through art, and quiltmaking, fusing together various de Young exhibits into one entertaining event. (5-8:45 p.m., free)
Karen Tei Yamashita @ Internationa Hotel Manilatown Center (Fri.) "The International Hotel was (and is, sort of) a residential hotel built in 1907 and located on the corner of Kearny and Jackson streets, originally housing Asian-Americans, largely Filipinos. In the late 1960s, it was slated for demolition and entered a protracted battle, which ultimately resulted in evictions, demolition of the building (despite robust public protest, including 2,000 Jim Jones followers), and its rebuilding in 2005. Author Karen Tei Yamashita launches her new book, I Hotel, with a multimedia presentation and reading. The sizable tome collects 10 novellas, each portraying characters in Chinatown's 'Yellow Power movement, people who strived for civil rights in ways that continue to benefit our city and culture. I Hotel includes illustrations by Leland Wong and Sina Grace." --Tara Jepsen (Free, 6 p.m.)
Alex Lucas @ Guerrero Gallery (Sat.) Philly's Alex Lucas has been featured in Fecal Face and Dwell magazine for good reason. His ink- and silkscreened images of metropolitan disasters make nature's wrath seem almost serene. City skylines are submerged underwater or covered in green overgrowth and fog; free of people, there's a quiet solitude to these scenes. From the looks of things at Guerrero Gallery's site, Lucas has already sold a couple prints, but you can view them before someone takes them home on Saturday from 7 to 11 p.m. Note that the gallery is not on Guerrero, but rather on 19th St. at York. (Free).
Banksy S.F. Photo Stroll (Sat.) This city has gone Banksy-crazy, with the guerrilla graffiti artist becoming the hipster-apparition version of seeing an image of the Virgin Mary in a piece of toast. You could bookmark all the blogs chasing after his pieces around San Francisco or you can take a walk and see them all yourself. Flavorpill reports there's a group of graffiti enthusiasts meeting at 3:15 p.m. Saturday in front of Amnesia to follow the Banksy scent.
The Dodos @ Victoria Theater (Fri.) We posted about this one earlier in the week, and we can't guarantee there are still tickets left, but the Dodos are playing that cool Mission venue, the Victoria Theater, on Saturday night. Tickets are free, and you should stop by Four Barrel ASAP if you want to see whether there are any left.
Lawn Bowls @ Golden Gate Park (Sat.) When the weather is this nice, your mind can't help but turn to thoughts of Lawn Bowl, the 400-year-old sport that involves wearing all white and rolling things on grass. Saturday, national Lawn Bowls clubs are hosting open houses, which involve free lessons, food, and, of course, games. Starting at 9 a.m., check out the Lawn Bowls area of Golden Gate Park and you can learn about a historical sport that we always assumed was called "lawn bowling." (Free)
Iron Man @ the Castro Theater (Sat. & Sun.) You can try to avoid the inevitable summer blockbuster that is Iron Man 2, or you can watch in a very special San Francisco theater that'll give the film a grand organ intro. The movie screens all weekend at the Castro, and its bargain matinees are cheap enough to meet our criteria. Get there for the 11 a.m. screenings on Saturday or Sunday and pay only $7.50 (regular screenings are $11 if you wanna sleep in).
BaconCamp @ Chez Poulet (Sat.) Some people really love bacon. We're not in that camp, as it were, but if you are, you might want to check out BaconCamp, an interactive celebration of all things related to those greasy little strips. (4 p.m., $5 sliding scale to get in).
KUSF Rock-n-Swap @ USF (Sun.) Your mom put the record nerd gene in your DNA. Thank her for raising you to praise vinyl by bringing her to the KUSF Rock-n-Swap, a fun little gathering of record geeks on the USF campus. It's only $3 to get in if you arrive between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. (the 6 a.m. early birds have to pay $20).