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BEST BETS: Friday

July 11, 2002

all day Movies

"The Road to Perdition" marks a turn to the dark side for Tom Hanks, who plays an Irish American gangster seeking vengeance across the Depression-era plains of the Midwest. Director Sam Mendes follows up his critically and commercially successful debut, "American Beauty," with screenwriter David Self's adaptation of the graphic novel written by Max Allan Collins, illustrated by Richard Piers Rayner. The top-drawer cast includes Paul Newman, Jude Law, Daniel Craig, Stanley Tucci and Jennifer Jason Leigh.

"The Road to Perdition," rated R for violence and language, opens Friday in general release.

8:30pm Pop Music

The Robert Randolph Family Band arrives Friday at the House of Blues, allowing fans to see the flip side of "sacred steel" whiz Randolph's talents. The 24-year-old instrumentalist created a buzz earlier this year when he showed up in the Word, a contemporary gospel collaboration that teamed him with the North Mississippi Allstars and keyboardist John Medeski. This time he's playing with his own group, which has opened for the Dave Matthews Band and will be part of the Grateful Dead reunion concerts next month in Wisconsin.

Robert Randolph Family Band, House of Blues, 8430 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood, 8:30 p.m. $16. (213) 848-5100.

all day Photography

The fact that we have the term "self-portrait" indicates that artists are not afraid to come out from behind the canvas. The new photography exhibition "Artist as Art," opening at Apex Fine Art, makes artists the subjects of other people's art--in this case, photographs of 20th century artists--such as Charlie Chaplin, Alfred Hitchcock, Jackson Pollock and Georgia O'Keeffe.

"Artist as Art," Apex Fine Art, 152 N. La Brea Ave., L.A. Tuesdays to Saturdays, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Ends Sept. 7. Opening reception Friday, 7 to 9 p.m. Free. (323) 634-7887.

8pm Words

What do the U.S., Brazil and Japan have in common? One answer is: Karen Tei Yamashita, an uncommon author who has mixed ethnographic travelogue with social commentary and a dash of magic realism in her novel "Circle K Cycles." The Beverly Hills Public Library's New Short Fiction Program presents a reading of Tei's novel, which interprets the lives of descendants of Japanese immigrant workers in Brazil. Spoken-word artist Sally Shore and actors Robert Shinso, Jimmy Taenaka and Jenny Woo are featured; Yamashita will sign her book following the performance.

Karen Tei Yamashita's "Circle K Cycles," Beverly Hills Library, Auditorium, 444 N. Rexford Drive, Beverly Hills, 8 p.m. $10. (310) 288-2220 or (323) 662-7900.

Noon Dance

Founded and directed by Marissa "Mighty" Labog, a local dance group called One Step Ahead steps out in the Watercourt in California Plaza with a program titled "Hope in Hollywood: Hip-Hop in the Making." Designed to help young people channel their energies in a positive direction and simultaneously destroy negative stereotypes about popular culture, the project features performers who have adopted such monikers as Lockn' Key, Lady Neva, Ohala and Shy Girl. All have stories about how dance took over their lives, which they share with their peers. In the words of group member Proto-J: "Hip-hop is fun, kick back, you don't have to worry about people looking at you, fights, etc.... Breaking is pretty much my life. I break full time. It's my lifestyle."

"Hope in Hollywood: Hip-Hop in the Making," Watercourt, California Plaza, 350 S. Grand Ave., downtown L.A., noon. Free. (213) 687-2159.

all day Movies

Julio Medem of Spain delivers another tale of romantic destiny with his fifth feature, "Sex and Lucia." Paz Vega, right, stars as a young waitress in Madrid, who, following the loss of her longtime boyfriend, a passionate writer (Tristan Ulloa), flees to a secluded Mediterranean island, where she discovers a more complex past, present and future than she ever expected. Najwa Nimri, Daniel Freire and Elena Anaya also star.

"Sex and Lucia," not rated, opens Friday in selected theaters.

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