If you've procrastinated this far into the Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival, what the heck are you thinking? A plethora of independent, art, and foreign films fall into your backyard (okay, nearby theaters), and you missed them all -- almost. There's still a chance for celluloid slackers to find redemption as the fest closes out this weekend. Films screen today and Friday at the AMC Coral Ridge 10 beginning at noon both days. (See "Film Listings" for times and address.) There's even a chance to party with fest guests of honor at the lavish black-tie Luminary Awards Gala on Fort Lauderdale beach ($125 per person) at 7 p.m. on Friday. Films show again at Coral Ridge beginning at noon Sunday, working up to screenings of People's Choice (6:30 p.m.) and Best Film (8:30 p.m.) winners. Planet Hollywood, at 1850 SE Seventeenth St. in Fort Lauderdale, hosts the Wrap Party with rock music, open bar, and buffet starting at 9 p.m. Sunday ($40-$50). For festival information call 954-564-2820.
Cirque Ingenieux adds a new dimension to the blend of circus arts and street entertainment that had its rise in Canada with the popular Cirque du Soleil in 1984. Instead of the mishmash of individual acts typical of an American circus, Ingenieux utilizes a cast of the world's finest contortionists, gymnasts, jugglers, tightrope walkers, and aerial artists (no animals!) in a character-driven story line set to an original musical score -- in this case the wordless tale of a trapeze performer named Sarah and her fantastic journey into the surreal. The troupe performs at 8 p.m. tonight and Saturday at the Kravis Center for the Performing Arts, 701 Okeechobee Blvd., West Palm Beach. Tickets cost $15 to $27.50. Call 561-832-7469 or 800-572-8471.
Racing pigs make their way squealing and sprinting back to Holiday Park along with a five-story roller coaster and live entertainment for Promenade in the Park today through Sunday. The 39th edition of the annual festival also features the All-Star Sports Tent, filled with interactive games and chances to meet sports personalities; a carnival midway and separate toddler rides; and fine arts and antiques markets. Entertainment headliner Lee Roy Parnell hits the stage Saturday at 8 p.m., and Gary King and the Dream, Sha Shaty, and River Road perform throughout the weekend. And don't forget to place your bet (in play money, of course) on your favorite oinker. Admission prices range from $3 to $6 (rides extra). Events begin Friday at 5 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday at 10 a.m. Holiday Park, Federal Highway, two blocks south of Sunrise Boulevard, Fort Lauderdale. Call 954-764-5973.
Footy's Wing Ding has become such a big thing that its charity chicken-cooking contest and big-name entertainment lineup has been expanded to two days this year. Area chefs vie for the $1500 first prize by whipping up their chicken and pasta dishes, which Wing Ding attendees can munch on. There's also fair fare such as hamburgers. Entertainment includes Ziggy Marley, Inner Circle, KC and the Sunshine Band, Duncan Sheik, and Hanson. Also making appearances over the weekend are Miami Dolphins' quarterback Dan Marino and players from the Florida Marlins, Miami Heat, and Florida Panthers. Proceeds from the annual event, now in its eleventh year, go to Here's Help, a live-in drug rehabilitation center in Opa-Locka. Tickets (including seven food coupons) can be purchased in advance for $10 at Pizza Hut locations in Dade and Broward counties. The Wing Ding takes place at Young Circle Park near downtown Hollywood from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, and from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday. Call 954-463-9299.
If compact cars and affordable electronics are the only things that come to mind when you think of Asian contributions to the West, it's definitely time to attend Asian Cultural Influences in the New World, a series of lectures, films, and presentations at the Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens. Harvard-educated anthropologist James Ito-Adler, who has spent much of his life documenting Japanese and other Asian influences outside of the Orient, lectures on "The Asian Diaspora in the New World" at 11 a.m. today. A screening of the film Hito Hata: Raise the Banner will be held at 1 p.m. The film, set in Los Angeles' Little Tokyo and documenting first-generation Japanese immigrants, is the first feature-length film completely written, produced, directed, and acted by Asian Americans. The day of Asian culture concludes with the panel discussion "Asian Influences on Dance, Music, Film, and Architecture." The lectures and film are free; admission to museum galleries -- before or after the presentations -- ranges from $2 to $4.25. Events begin at 11 a.m. and run until 5 p.m. The Morikami Museum is located at 4000 Morikami Park Rd. in Delray Beach. Call 561-495-0233.
It's only a little ironic. "We've matured, in our voices, in our music, everything," muses Marques "Batman" Houston, one of the vocalists in the hip-hop trio Immature. They might want to consider a name change at some point, but the three fifteen-year-olds can hang on to the brand-name recognition of their current title for a while. The maturation of Immature shows on its latest outing, The Journey, on which ballads abound, including the flamenco flavor of "Tamika." Up-tempo R&B and hip-hop/R&B hybrids round out the disc, for which the group brought in guest performers, producers, and songwriters, from Keith Sweat to Bizzy Bones of Bone Thugs-N-Harmony to Daz of the Dogg Pound. Houston, Kelton "LBD" Kessee, and Jerome "Romeo" Jones play the Fair at Gulfstream Park tonight at 7:30 p.m. Reserved-seat tickets cost $10; general admission is free. The fair is located at Federal Highway and Hallandale Beach Boulevard in Hallandale. Call 954-454-3247.
Hailed by Dance Magazine as "one of the true revelations of dance today," Ballet Hispanico proves there's more to Spanish dancing than flamenco and cha-cha. Under the direction of artistic director Tina Ramirez, the dancers perform a three-part program, opening with Idol Obsession. Choreographer George Faison based the piece -- filled with religious iconography, images of Mexican folklore, and upbeat Tejano music -- on the life, career, and tragic death of Hispanic pop star Selena. The troupe returns after an intermission with Poema Infinito, for which choreographer Maria Rovira was inspired by Spanish writer Federico Garcia Lorca. After the second intermission, the dancers cut loose on Ann Reinking's Ritmo y Ruido, set to the pulsating rhythms of hip-hop and Afro-Cuban beats. Ballet Hispanico brings its national tour to the Kravis Center for the Performing Arts, 701 Okeechobee Blvd. in West Palm Beach tonight at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $20 to $40. Call 561-832-7469.
When they helped found jazz fusion as a genre in the late Sixties and early Seventies, they never thought they would become the "old guard." But Wayne Shorter and Herbie Hancock, who appear tonight at the Kravis Center for the Performing Arts, are the premier remaining representatives of the movement. "Max Roach, Sonny Rollins, and Roy Haynes are still around," says Hancock, who helped map out the fusion movement while playing keyboards with Miles Davis' seminal mid-Sixties quintet, with which Shorter also performed. "But a lot of the people who came before Wayne and me are gone. So now, even though the music is still new, he and I are, in some sense, the old guard." Hancock and saxophonist Shorter, a founding member of Weather Report, have teamed up again for 1+1, their recent release of piano and sax duets. In concert they'll draw from the album's ten cuts, three original compositions by each, three collaborations, and one tune, "Memory of Enchantment," written by Michiel Borstlap for the 1996 Thelonious Monk Composition Competition, which it won. See the duo tonight at 8 p.m. at the Kravis Center for the Performing Arts, 701 Okeechobee Blvd. in West Palm Beach. Tickets cost $25 to $38 and can be purchased by phone at 561-832-7469 or 800-572-8471.
"Mr. Entertainment." "Mr. Television." "Uncle Miltie." It's easy to see by his nicknames that vaudeville, radio, comedy, theater, and film star Milton Berle is one of the most beloved performers of our time. He's earned it. He started out in 1913 at age five as the spokesboy for Buster Brown shoes and in 1948 became television's first giant when he launched Texaco Star Theater. He fit in plenty of comedy appearances over the years as well, with cafe and club dates too numerous to count. Berle brings his comic side to West Palm Beach tonight, joined by comedian Rita McKenzie. Ticket prices range from $25 to $45 for the 8 p.m. show at the Kravis Center for the Performing Arts, 701 Okeechobee Blvd. in West Palm Beach. Call 800-572-8471.