Reel Music Festival
934 SW Salmon Street
Fee: varies (free-$10 per film)
Now in its 34th year, the Reel Music Festival is a celebration of music as seen through the eyes of filmmakers that document the historical, the avant-garde and the luscious ways in which music moves and courses through the American soul. Here are a few recommended screenings you might enjoy during RMF’s first week (the full three-week schedule is available at nwfilm.org):
Robert Frank’s lost tour documentary of Mick Taylor era Rolling Stones, filmed on their 1972 Exile On Main Street North American tour. Shelved for years on account of its unflattering portrait of rock and/or roll, now resurrected in all its licentious glory.
A Song For You: The Austin City Limits Story
A behind the scenes historical recount of your favorite influential 40-year running PBS program. Interviews with performers like Bonnie Raitt and Wilco are sprinkled in.
King of Jazz
One from the Universal vaults! Before Bing Crosby was the king of the crooners and George Gershwin’s “Rhapsody in Blue” was a hit for the ages, this technicolor movie was in the works to showcase them both.
NW Music Video Showcase
Music video collaborations by bands and filmmakers from Portland, Seattle, and Olympia. Pizza provided by Hot Lips!
Jan. 13, 14, 15
Gentlemen Prefer Blondes
Jan. 13–14, 7 p.m.
Jan. 15, 3 p.m.
5th Avenue Cinema
510 SW Hall Street
Free for PSU students with ID
If you haven’t taken advantage of PSU’s 5th Avenue Cinema, you’ve been missing out on a free chance to view a lot of different cinematic viewpoints. Gentlemen Prefer Blondes is an iconic Marilyn Monroe special (with some feminist overtones!), but more importantly features Jane Russell and a squad of Olympic athletes working out aboard a cruise ship.
Guantanamo Visibility Action
As part of a nationwide and historical tradition on behalf of the marginalized, you can participate in this multi-coalition effort to send a message on the unacceptability of the legally and morally questionable Guantanamo Bay Prison.
1800 E Burnside Street
This free team trivia event will leave you with lots of opportunities to take home cash or prizes. Grab a few friends and head to East Burnside to show off your knowledge skills. Tap Room opens at 6 p.m. and is ages 21+ only.
Newspace Center for Photography
1632 SE 10th Avenue
This photo essay and exhibit focuses on artists of color and their use of the digital medium to spread their individual and collective messages. The influence of gender, race and sexuality on pop culture is also explored. Opens Jan. 13 and runs through Feb. 25.
Fundamentals of Improvisation
Portland Center Stage at the Armory
128 NW 11th Avenue
Take the streetcar to the Armory and enjoy this workshop from Nicholas Kessler. Work in improv can help with more than just your humor: the ability to come up with witty and quick responses can also improve public speaking and interviewing skills. No pressure, no judgement, and no improv experience required.
Peaches Christ Presents: Mister Act
3017 SE Milwaukie Avenue
This drag-queen-inspired take on the classic Whoopi Goldberg vehicle Sister Act stars iconic drag queens Peaches Christ, Latrice Royale and Willam. Peaches Christ productions have rocked San Francisco and beyond since the ‘90s and should not be missed.
Portland Bridal Show
Oregon Convention Center, Halls A-A1
If you or a friend is getting married or just likes trying cake samples, make sure you get tickets to this show. There are some very stringent rules about which tickets go for which times because they get snatched up so quickly. Head to portlandbridalshow.com for all the booths and ticket pricing.
The Secret Society
116 NE Russell Street
Have you ever wanted to learn swing? This all-ages, five-hour dance party happens every Thursday night to the tune of two live bands and sounds like a hopping good time.