Gadzooks! Godzilla is over 40 years old. Over time, the nuclear reptile with the sharp spine, glowing belly, and deadly breath has grown bigger: A mere 150 feet tall in the '50s, he now stretches to a post-inflationary 300 feet. After kicking the asses of numerous skyscraper-size enemies -- Gamara the spinning turtle, Mothra the big moth (duh!), Smog Monster, three-headed schizo King Ghidrah, even King Kong -- the veteran film star deserves a party, and that's exactly what he's getting with "Oh! Godzilla! A Gargantuan Tribute." Film clips, psychotronic analysis, behind-the-scenes gossip, and trivia contests are all part of a program that spans Godzilla's life, from breach birth by H-bomb to his recent battle with the scorpion-like Destroyer. Meet the king at 7:30 p.m. at Pacific Film Archive, 2626 Bancroft, Berkeley. Tickets are $3.50-5.50; call (510) 642-1124.
Your Body Is a Battleground From Danger to Dignity: The Fight for Safe Abortion chronicles the history of the U.S. abortion rights movement, in particular, the events leading to Roe vs. Wade. Created by Concentric Media (whose 1993 doc When Abortion Was Illegal: Untold Stories garnered an Academy Award nomination), the film weaves together two parallel narratives: the evolution of underground networks to help women find safe abortions outside the law; and activist/legislator efforts to make abortion legal. Followed by a question-and-answer session with the filmmakers, both From Danger to Dignity and When Abortion Was Illegal screen at 7:30 p.m. at UC Theatre, 2036 University, Berkeley. Tickets are $4-6.50; call (510) 843-6267.
Art You Can Eat Bean and noodle portrait artist Jason Mecier strikes again: His latest show features images from Showgirls and a 12-piece Melrose Place cast set (including a Kimberly featuring detachable wig and a scalp riddled with words like "hate," "fuck," and "bomb"). Broadening his scope, Mecier is also creating yarn, felt, and cotton puff-ball portraits of luminaries like Lucille Ball, Carol Channing, Buffy Sainte-Marie, and Patti Smith. A reception for the artiste lasts 6 to 9 p.m. at Belcher Studios Gallery, 69 Belcher, S.F. The show continues through Jan. 6. Free; call 863-8745.
High Voltage The loneliness and loveliness of a life spent on the highway: A tried-and-true country theme, but Jay Farrar makes it contemporary on Trace, the debut album by Son Volt. If praise from rock critics is an adequate measure, Farrar's new band is better than Wilco, the group formed by the rest of his bandmates in Uncle Tupelo (who broke up in 1994). Son Volt has been lumped together with a growing number of "new traditionalists" -- Freakwater, S.F.'s own lovely Tarnation, and other groups whose approach to roots music is both romantic and pragmatic -- but the songwriting on Trace transcends trends. The Carpetbaggers open for Son Volt at 8 p.m. at Great American Music Hall, 859 O'Farrell, S.F. Tickets are $10; call 885-0750.
Sold to the Highest Bidder 'Tis the season for fund-raising art shindigs. New Langton Arts' annual Artists Auction includes silent and noisy bidding for stuff by local and national creators. Works by D-L Alvarez, Kathy Spence, bad boy Lyle Ashton Harris, pathetic-and-proud Cary Leibowitz/Candyass, and others will be available; clotheshorses, muscle queens, and modern primates can feast on non-art treats from Emporio Armani, Gold's Gym, and Tattoo City, among others. Pamela Z, Julie Queen, and Markus will provide sounds. A preview party ($20) begins at 5:30 p.m.; the auction starts at 7 p.m. at 1246 Folsom, S.F. Suggested admission is $7; call 626-5416.
On the Move "Dance Makers" unites four varied local Filipino/Asian-American choreographers. Jesselito Bie performs Siamese Dream, a kung fu destruction of The King and I, with music by the Pixies and Hole. Enrico Labayen mixes classical ballet and Philippine dance in Damas and Romance. Sharon Sato offers Window, a modern work for two performers. Pearl Ubungen presents Refugee/The Wall, a site-specific performance about border patrol and anti-immigrant sentiment in California. The program starts at 8 p.m. (through Sunday) at New Performance Gallery, 3153 17th St., S.F. Tickets are $12.50; call 626-1781.
Bad Girls Onstage The latest dramatic endeavor from Marilyn Monroe Memorial Theater, Wannabe: A Girl Gang Invasion, pits a rampaging clan of nocturnal she-devils against one man. Who wins? Find out at 9 p.m. at 96 Lafayette, S.F. The show continues through Jan. 18, with a special New Year's Eve mod party/performance. Tickets are $12 ($30-50 on New Year's Eve); call 552-3034.
Bad Girls on Film A thriving subgenre of contemporary cinema: films about pretty teen-age girls with strong lesbian and even stronger homicidal impulses. Peter Jackson's funny-then-traumatic, superfantastic Heavenly Creatures (based on a real-life murder committed by mystery novelist Anne Perry) set the mold in 1994. More recent entries include Sister My Sister (killer maids) and Fun (a U.S. flick that hasn't shown in S.F.). Director Ana Kokkinos offers a woman's perspective with Only the Brave, about two Australian teens who like drugs, vandalism, fights, and sex. The film screens at 6, 8, and 10 p.m. at the Roxie, 3125 16th St., S.F. Tickets are $6; call 863-1087.
You Gotta Have Art A visual arts center for disabled adults, Creativity Explored offers hands-on instruction in ceramics, painting, sculpture, photography, and other mediums. The site's annual Holiday Open House and Art Sale includes works by over 70 artists, including nationally exhibited pieces by Vincent Jackson, Cam Quach, and Douglas Sheran. Look and buy from 6 to 9 p.m. at 3245 16th St., S.F. Free; call 863-2108.
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