Movies and Mixology

Revenge, like a refreshing craft cocktail, is best served cold. On Wednesday evening, both were elevated to high art at Arclight Cinemas’ Lights, Camera, Cocktails series as the Santa Monica location of the theater chain teamed up with Bar Accomplice to host a screening of Quentin Tarantino’s Kill Bill Vol. 1.

The series, which pairs top local bartenders and classic movies, debuted to great fanfare last year in Chicago and launched in L.A. earlier this month with cocktails from Bar Clacson and a screening of Goldfinger at the Culver City location.

ArcLight Cocktails
A trio of craft cocktails fit for a cult classic (Courtesy photo)

The events feature a three-drink program (pre-, mid-, and post-show cocktails) with popcorn and light bites. The hors d’oeuvres and drinks are created from scratch, inspired by the film with which they’re celebrating. After the show, guests gather in the café for a wrap party to discuss the film and savor their final cocktail.

The series is sponsored by Grey Goose Vodka and curated by beverage event consultants The Dogma Group. ArcLight’s Food and Beverage Director, Steven Ramskill, told me that pairing ArcLight with modern mixology is a natural fit. We talked about how far both the theater experience and the craft cocktail movement have evolved over the past few years in L.A.

ArcLight Program
An old flick and a swig of hooch never looked so good. (Photo by Scott Bridges)

It is only a recent development, for example, that movie theaters have even begun serving alcohol, and ArcLight was the originator. During that same span of time, a culture has sprung up in the realm of cocktails in the same way that it has with the craft beer industry.

Ramskill says the bars they’ve teamed up are “some of the best,” and “most innovative” in town. The team from Bar Accomplice is a case in point. Among its trio of concoctions designed especially for the evening was the disastrously named “Your Name is Chuck, Right?” This Grey Goose vodka, Deveron single malt Scotch, Martini bitter (an Italian aperitif), Martini Rubino vermouth, and absinthe. This kick-ass cocktail was bottled to be enjoyed during the equally kick-ass Uma Thurman fight scenes. Both pack a punch. 

ArcLight Ext
ArcLight Santa Monica on the Third Street Promenade (Photo by Scott Bridges)

“We thoroughly enjoyed having to watch the film again as research and the challenge presented by not only making tasty drinks but drinks relevant to the film,” Mitchell O. Bushell of Bar Accomplice told me. 

Tickets to the 21-and-over event are $40 and include one movie ticket, three craft cocktails, complimentary popcorn, and light fare, and can be purchased in advance on the movie theater’s website.

For all dates, the event check-in and the pre-screening cocktail begins at 6:30 p.m. The film will start promptly at 7 p.m., and the wrap party immediately follows the end of each film.


November 14: Scarface with Ever Bar at The Everly Hotel

Location: ArcLight Culver City

November 28: The Blues Brothers with Harvard and Stone

Location: ArcLight Santa Monica

December 5: Pulp Fiction with Pikoh

Location: ArcLight Culver City

December 12: Amelie with Melrose Umbrella Company

Location: ArcLight Santa Monica


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