Tired of the prepackaged "entertainment product" world of the cineplex? Want to see some classic Twentieth Century Fox films on the big screen in lavish, regal, old-school surroundings? Then you're ready to visit the Fox Theatre (527 North Grand Boulevard) for the "Best Seat in the House" film festival, June 2-7, for six nights of free double features sponsored by the Fox Movie Channel and Charter Communications.
The movies ain't bad: Alien, The French Connection, Raising Arizona, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Young Frankenstein, An Affair to Remember and more. The week starts with "Marilyn Monday," featuring Gentlemen Prefer Blondes and All About Eve; more important, the lobby will be populated with Marilyn look-alikes.
For impersonators of a different sort, the festival offers a midnight screening of The Rocky Horror Picture Show on Friday, a perfect prelude to the family program beginning Saturday afternoon.
Tickets are free and available at the Fox Theatre box office, any of the six area Pulaski Banks or any Charter Communications payment center, with a limit of two per person. For more information, call 314-534-1111 or visit www.metrotix.com. Parking is free all week long in the Grand Center lots. -- Mark Dischinger
Abstracts and Crotch Rockets
The Reception joins art and motorbikes
A charity art show is taking place this weekend at a place that's a well-kept secret: a small "museum" of motorcycles in South City. "The Reception" is what they're calling this auction of art made by locals, set to take place in Dave Mungenast's Classic Motorcycle Museum (5625 Gravois Avenue). Patrons will fork over $10 ($15 a couple) to children's charity, the SOAR [Sourcing Opportunities and Achieving Results] Foundation, for the right to chomp cheese and drink wine, enjoy live music and spend money on raffles and the auction. There's valet parking, too, during the show hours of 7-11 p.m. Friday, May 30, and 4-11 p.m. Saturday, May 31. Don't touch the Indian or the Triumph (314-776-6354). -- Byron Kerman
Tipple in your tartan
The terror-alert color wheel has been cranked to orange again, which means there are but two certainties in life: First, you don't want to be flying anywhere right now, and second, you could use a good stiff drink. Wednesday, May 28, the Sheldon Concert Hall has you covered on both counts with a 7 p.m. Scotch-tasting benefit for the Sheldon Art Galleries. The Sheldon is just a short hop down the road (3648 Washington Avenue), and the event's organizers have lined up an array of five "exceptional, rare and cult" scotches. For the connoisseur, the names alone are enough to raise an eyebrow and set the glass hand to itchin': Ardbeg 30 Islay malt, Aberlour 1969, the Balvenie 25, Dalmore 29 Stillman's Dram and Glen Morangie 25 Malaga Wood Finish. For the scotch novice, this is a chance to taste Scotland without leaving the country. At $100 a person ($150 for two) you're allowed a sample of each and unlimited hors d'oeuvres. Reservations are required and attendance is limited, so call now (314-533-9900). -- Paul Friswold
After Hours in the Primate House
Summertime means late hours at the St. Louis Zoo, and that means blessed quiet. At Hardee's "Summer Zoo Evenings" (every night through September 1, 314-781-0900, www.stlzoo.org) the 7 p.m. closing time means fewer children (and strollers) as the sun fades, bringing a less crowded, less noisy and cooler vibe to the free Forest Park attraction. The mandrills put on smoking jackets and read John Cheever books while puffing on pipes, too. It's casual. -- Byron Kerman