What: “The Godfather”
Where: Delray Beach Center for the Arts, 51 N. Swinton Ave., Delray Beach
When: 4 and 7:30 p.m.
Contact: 561/243-7922, delraycenterforthearts.org
Summer in Delray Beach means the rare opportunity to see films both recent and classic, projected on the big screen at the Crest Theatre. The series, which is entering its second year and which runs every Wednesday through Aug. 27, kicks off with a movie that probably needs no introduction: Francis Ford Coppola’s triple-Oscar winning adaptation of Mario Puzo’s “The Godfather.” This was a film that singlehandedly resurrected the moribund gangster-film genre from the black-and-white sneers of James Cagney to the epic, bloody romanticism of the ‘70s cinema zeitgeist; we wouldn’t have “Goodfellas” or “The Sopranos” without it. Witness all of your favorite lines and scenes again at these screenings, which will include a post-film discussion.
What: Safari Nights: Wild, Wild West
Where: Palm Beach Zoo, 1301 Summit Blvd., West Palm Beach
When: 4:30 to 9 p.m.
Cost: $9.95 children, $15.95 adults
Contact: 561/547-9453, palmbeachzoo.org
This summer, the Palm Beach Zoo is staying up past its bedtime on select Fridays, offering exclusive programming for children and adults alike, each date centered on a theme. This week, the zoo transports audiences to the old west, promising a wild hoedown that includes the opportunity to take a photo with a cowboy. And as always, there will be roving animal encounters, keeper talks, zoo staff dressed up as characters like Kiwi the Koala and Crash the Cardinal, face painting and children’s games and crafts. Adults can enjoy live music on the Tropics Café Deck. The ticket price includes admission to the entire zoo.
What: Opening night of “Life Itself”
Where: Cinema Paradiso, 503 S.E. Sixth St., Fort Lauderdale
When: 6:15 p.m.
Contact: 954/760-9898, fliff.com
Roger Ebert, with his partner Gene Siskel, defined mainstream film criticism during the 1980s and 1990s. Brilliant sparring partners as well as perceptive critics and telegenic personalities, their “thumbs up” and “thumbs down” judgments could make or break a movie during its opening weekend. Now, tragically, we’ve lost both. Ebert’s decline, from cancer of the thyroid and salivary glands, was especially hard to witness until his April 2013 death, but it never impaired his ability to write, even after his lower jaw was removed. The extraordinary documentary filmmaker Steve James (“Hoop Dreams”) shadowed Ebert during his final years, the result of which is “Life Itself”—a tribute to America’s most famous film critic, based on Ebert’s memoir of the same name. The movie also charts his history and importance as a writer, and it’s peppered with entertaining film clips and interviews with admirers ranging from Martin Scorsese to Errol Morris. “Life Itself,” which has received universal critical acclaim, also opens at Cinema Paradiso in Hollywood.
What: Boca Burger Battle
Where: Sanborn Square Park, 72 N. Federal Highway, Boca Raton
When: 6 to 10 p.m.
Contact: 561/338-7594, bocaburgerbattle.com
Now in its third year, this delectable competition is quickly becoming one of Boca’s signature food events—our yearly survey of the State of the Burger. Both traditional and alternative patties will be dished by chefs from 19 top burger establishments from across South Florida, including 10 here in Boca—from 13 American Table to Shake Shack. Bite Gastrotruck, a Fort Lauderdale-based food truck, will attempt to defend its 2013 award for Best Boca Burger. Attendees also can sample tropical salads, truffle mac and cheese, gourmet french fries and other non-burger delicacies, along with an array of craft beers, homemade sangria and seasonal spirits. Classic Rock Therapy will provide live music, and there will be no fees for food and drinks beyond the entrance fee. Portions of the ticket price will benefit PROPEL, a Boca-based nonprofit.
What: Opening night of “The Miami Generation: Revisited”
Where: Museum of Art, 1 E. Las Olas Blvd., Fort Lauderdale
When: 7 to 9 p.m.
Contact: 954/525-5500, moafl.org
This much-anticipated group show is a sequel to “The Miami Generation,” a groundbreaking 1983 exhibition that gathered the work of nine emerging artists from Miami’s Cuban exile community to showcase their art at the now-defunct Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture in Miami. Thirty years later, the Museum of Art | Fort Lauderdale is bringing back all nine artists to display work completed in the intervening years. Museum director Bonnie Clearwater tells Boca Raton, “Although born in Cuba, most [of the artists] received their art education in Miami, and then remained in their adopted city, forming a strong community of artists that contributed to the growth of Miami as an international art center.” “The Miami Generation: Revisited” runs through Sept. 21.
What: Opening night of “9 Circles”
Where: Artistic Vibes, 12986 S.W. 89th Ave., Miami
When: 8 p.m.
Cost: $25 general admission, free for audience members under the age of 25, with ID
The title of this spartan antiwar psychodrama, written by Jesuit priest Bill Cain, is inspired by Dante’s Inferno. In a tale that unfolds in nine chapters, or “circles,” a mentally imbalanced American Army grunt who is alleged to have committed an unspeakable atrocity while stationed in Iraq undergoes his own descent into Hell back home: a months-long procession of Army attorneys, ministers, psychologists and civilian lawyers, who alternately try to understand his psyche, use him as a political pawn and bring him to Jesus. At two hours and 15 minutes, this heady play is receiving a commendable production from Ground Up and Rising, a Miami-based theater company prone to mounting fearless, provocative works like this one. I attended a preview production this past weekend, and “9 Circles” is well worth seeing, if a smidge overlong. Christian Vandepas’ performance as the disturbed soldier is a tour de force. It runs Saturdays and Sundays only through July 20.
What: Dana Carvey and Dennis Miller
Where: Hard Rock Live, 1 Seminole Way, Hollywood
When: 7 p.m.
Contact: 800/745-3000, hardrocklivehollywoodfl.com
Radio talker Dennis Miller is considered one of our most prominent “9-11 conservatives”—a comedian who was once liberal (and still is on some social issues) but who turned to the right after the events of Sept. 11, 2001. As a result, the loquacious former “Weekend Update” host and author of I Rant, Therefore I Am may have found a home each week on “The O’Reilly Factor,” but in many ways he’s still the same Miller—a bottomless trove of esoteric political and pop-culture references that will have some comedy-goers laughing in the aisles and others scratching their heads. He’ll be joined on this co-headlining tour by the decidedly non-partisan Dana Carvey, whose ability to impersonate political leaders on both sides of the aisle—including a withering, dead-on Barack Obama—has not waned a bit since his career-making stint satirizing Bush the elder on “SNL.”