THURSDAY, august 5

THE MUPPET MOVIE--The NW Film Center's outdoor film fest has it all: Humor, drama, great music, cross-species romance, and a funny, funny bear? Toss in some hitchhiking hippie muppets, an American dream story about a frog pining for fame, and some fine human talent as well--and that's a good movie. PB
Mallory Hotel Parking Garage (on the roof), 815 SW 15th, 9 pm, $5

LOW DOUGH SHOWS--Low. Dough. Show. Clever name, wallet friendly concept. The Mercury and Thrasher Presents want to help you save money for a new muffler, or rent, or cocktails, or earplugs, while still having an assload of fun seeing your favorite bands at the Ash Street. Low Dough. High Return. This Thursday, check the rock assault of Burning Brides, plus the Explosion, and the Catheters. Bitchin'. KS
Ash Street, 225 SW Ash, 8:30 pm, $5

FRIDAY, august 6

BENEFIT--Nocturnal presents a star-studded evening to benefit the worthy folks at Portland's Sexual Minority Youth Resource Center, featuring local luminaries like The Decemberists and The Planet The, along with the pretty politico-pop of Blackbird Red. ZP
w/Tom Heinl; Nocturnal, 1800 E. Burnside, 8 pm, $13, all ages

VARIETY-- ... is the spice of life, and no one knows this better than the hilarious Reuben Nisenfeld, emcee of Uncle Rubio's Instant Star Chamber Variety Hour, a new late-night mock reality/talent show that promises short films, "sensualist Japanese puppetry" and "extreme dysfunctional makeovers," plus music by bands like The Maybe Happenings. JWS
The Back Door Theater, SE 43rd & Hawthorne, 736-1027, Fri-Sat 10:30 pm, $7-8

SATURDAY, august 7

VIDEO SLAM--Why not give your brain a little food for thought tonight before drowning it in booze? Orlo is hosting the second round in their video slam, where they'll show local four-minute videos pertaining to the theme, Plastic Culture. There's a $500 prize at stake, so expect quality. KS
Orlo, 2516 NW 29th, 7:30 pm (7 pm if you'd like to show a video),, FREE

GOSPEL FEST--Drop down and get your Jesus on, girl! Get ready for a tambourine shakin', foot stompin' good time, when gospel groups from around Portland and the nation join together for this free concert in Pioneer Courthouse Square. A great gospel choir is a true joy to behold, so don't let your stupid atheism get in the way of a good time! WSH
Pioneer Courthouse Square, 701 SW Broadway, Noon - 8 pm, free

BOOM--The official conclusion of this year's Tropix Festival juxtaposes some of the Bay Area's most pointy-headed ensembles with one of it's most manic. Our thoughtfully zoophilious friends in Good For Cows and Seven-Year Rabbit Cycle meet John Dwyer's (Pink and Brown/Coachwhips) riotous Hospitals for an explosive finale. ZP
Million, 120 N Russell, 10 pm, $5

SUNDAY, august 8

TRANSFORMERS--Kids today are into bullshit. Yu-Gi-Oh? Lizzie McGuire? Please. You want the good stuff? The real stuff? Then it's all about Autobots and Decepticons, baby. Today catch on the big screen a special screening of Transformers: The Movie, the best and weirdest film ever made about the Transformers. EH
Clinton St. Theater, 2522 SE Clinton, 4 pm, $4

GRAFFITI--Yet again, the dedicated champions of graffiti art at New American Casuals have rounded up a whole mess of artists for "Think Stains," an exhibition of both local and Bay Area artists, such as Jeben Berg and Alex Pardee. Dig the heady, urban concepts, and dig the party. MS

N.A.C., 326 SE Morrison, 294-2056, 7-9 pm, all ages, 21+ after 9 pm, free

MONDAY, august 9

AUGGGH! SHARKS!--Think your vacations are crappy? The film Open Water tells the horrifying TRUE tale of a couple who are left behind on a scuba trip, and end up bobbing around out in the middle of the ocean. Oh, and did I mention they are completely surrounded by ass-eating SHARKS? A fun and tense night at the movies! WSH
Check Movie Times page 65 for theaters and show times

TUESDAY, august 10

ROCK N' ROLL--If you think a band with a name like I Can Lick Any Son of a Bitch in the House is going to play sweet melodies and soft acoustic ditties, you're a complete idiot! Rebellious and insane, ICLASOBITH pounds out fun, frank, and furious shows. PB
w/Bastard Son of Johnny Cash, Goddamn Gentlemen; Dante's, 1 SW 3rd, 1-800-325-SEAT, 9 pm, $8

WEDNESDAY, august 11

WATCH AND LEARN--Don't get mad, get animated. The Portland Indy Animation Fest returns for another round of red-hot artistry. Witness moving images in both 3D and 2D, stop-motion works, and mind-boggling puppetry. Portland animators are hot, hot, hot right now, and you should be here if you consider yourself at all cutting-edge. EJ
The Know, 2026 NE Alberta, 8 pm, $3, through August 14,

Support The Portland Mercury

SLAY Film Fest
In person at the Clinton St. Theater 10/29 & 10/30