Editors' pick

Filmfest DC

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Editorial Review

Drama or comedy?
Documentary or animated?
Romania or Italy?
Extra butter or not?

These are just a few of the questions that will plague you this week as Filmfest DC gets underway. The festival brings more than 80 films from around the world to theaters around the area. This year there are several themes including new Italian and Romanian films and documentaries about social justice.

With so many choices we are here to help you out. We have chosen a highlight for each night of the festival. All you need to do is buy your ticket, sit back and enjoy.

- Amy Orndorff

For more information visit www.filmfestdc.org. For tickets call 202-234-3456 or visit www.tickets.com. Tickets cost $10 unless otherwise noted.

April 15
HIPSTERS 7 p.m. We can think of no better way to kick off the festival than at the opening night party! Hipsters is a Russian musical about young people learning to get their groove on despite a disapproving society. In addition to the screening, there will be dancing performances, live music by the Grandsons and plenty of champagne to sip. AMC Mazza Gallerie, 5300 Wisconsin Ave. NW. $40.

April 16
DAWSON, ISLAND 10 8:30 p.m. and April 17 at 9:30 p.m. When Chilean President Salvador Allende was overthrown, the members of his cabinet were sent to Dawson Island where they were imprisoned in a makeshift concentration camp. Director Miguel Littin will be at the screenings. Avalon Theatre, 5612 Connecticut Ave. NW.
THE WHITE STRIPES UNDER GREAT WHITE NORTHERN LIGHTS 8:45 p.m. and April 17 at 9:30 p.m. A documentary about the rock band White Stripes' tour of Canada. There will be a party after Friday night's screening. Regal Cinemas Gallery Place Stadium 14, 707 Seventh St. NW. $10 film, $15 party and film.
VIDEOCRACY 9 p.m. and April 21 at 8:30 p.m. A documentary about Italy's prime minister Silvio Berlusconi, who used sex, scandal and reality TV to get rich. Friday at Goethe-Institut, 812 Seventh St. NW. Wednesday at Avalon Theatre, 5612 Connecticut Ave. NW.

April 17
THE SECRET OF KELLS 1 p.m. The Oscar-nominated animated movie about the creation of an illuminated manuscript, the Book of Kells. Avalon Theatre, 5612 Connecticut Ave. NW.
SILENT WEDDING 6:30 p.m. and April 16 at 6:30 p.m. A wedding in Romania goes on despite the country's mourning over Stalin's death. The director will be at both screenings. Regal Cinemas Gallery Place Stadium 14, 707 Seventh St. NW.
25 CARATS 9:15 p.m. and April 18 at 7:30 p.m. A thriller set in Barcelona about thieves, hookers, crooked cops and two people trying to get by. Director Patxi Amezcua will be at both screenings. Avalon Theatre, 5612 Connecticut Ave. NW.

April 18
LOUISE-MICHEL 4 p.m. and April 20 at 6:30 p.m. In this revenge comedy, women from a closed factory pool their money to hire a hit man to kill the factory owner. A wine and cheese reception follows Sunday's screening at the Embassy of France, 4101 Reservoir Rd. NW. $20. Tuesday at Avalon Theatre, 5612 Connecticut Ave. NW.
NO ONE KNOWS ABOUT PERSIAN CATS 6:45 p.m. and April 19 at 6:30 p.m. A lightly fictionalized tale of two Iranian alt-rockers seeking to emigrate to Europe in order freely perform their music. Landmark's E Street Cinema, 555 11th St. NW.
LA PIVELLINA 7:15 p.m. and April 19 at 6:30 p.m. An abandoned 2-year-old brightens a trailer park and the family who takes her in - until a letter from the girl's mother arrives. Regal Cinemas Gallery Place Stadium 14, 707 Seventh St. NW.
SCHEHERAZADE, TELL ME A STORY 7:30 p.m. and April 20 at 8:45 p.m. A Sun TV presenter in Egypt gets caught up in a cultural scandal when she investigates male oppression. Landmark's E Street Cinema, 555 11th St. NW.

April 19
AIR DOLL 6:30 p.m. and April 20 at 6:30 p.m. A doll comes to life, runs away from her master and falls in love with a video shop clerk. Landmark's E Street Cinema, 555 11th St. NW.
AUTUMN ADAGIO 6:30 p.m. and April 21 at 6:30 p.m. A Roman Catholic nun struggles with her choices in life as she ages. Regal Cinemas Gallery Place Stadium 14, 707 Seventh St. NW.
SICILIAN GIRL 6:30 p.m. and April 20 at 8:30 p.m. A woman who grows up in a Mafia family avenges the murders of her brother and father by talking to the police. Avalon Theatre, 5612 Connecticut Ave. NW.

April 20
FRIENDS AT THE MARGHERITA CAF 6:30 p.m., April 21 at 6:30 p.m. and April 24 at 4:30 p.m. The story of a group of oddballs who hang around Bologna's Margherita Caf. Avalon Theatre, 5612 Connecticut Ave. NW.
NORTH 6:30 p.m. and April 21 at 8:30 p.m. Betrayed by his best friend and the love of his life, Jomar traverses the frozen countryside to get to his ex-wife and son. Landmark's E Street Cinema, 555 11th St. NW.
WHITE WEDDING 6:30 p.m. and April 21 at 8:15 p.m. A man travels from Johannesburg to Cape Town to get married only to have numerous problems along drive. Regal Cinemas Gallery Place Stadium 14, 707 Seventh St. NW.

April 21
LOURDES 6:30 p.m. and April 22at 6:30 p.m. A wheelchair-bound woman travels to the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Lourdes to find solace and maybe something more. Regal Cinemas Gallery Place Stadium 14, 707 Seventh St. NW.
PUCCINI AND THE GIRL 6:30 p.m. and April 22at 9 p.m. Composer Giacomo Puccini's wife punishes their maid when she becomes jealous of their relationship. Directors and producers Paolo Benvenuti and Paola Baroni will be at the screening. Avalon Theatre, 5612 Connecticut Ave. NW.
SAVIORS IN THE NIGHT 9 p.m. and April 22 at 6:30 p.m. A true story about how a family hid from Nazis on a farm in northwestern Germany for 27 months. Star Lia Hoenbroech will be at both screenings. Avalon Theatre, 5612 Connecticut Ave. NW.

April 22
COOKING WITH STELLA 6:30 p.m. and April 21 at 6:30 p.m. An Indian housekeeper and chef for Canadian diplomats pilfers from the family to help her fellow Indians. She must change her schemes when a new diplomat and a new nanny show up. The Thursday screening is followed by a wine and cheese reception. Thursday at Embassy of Canada, 501 Pennsylvania Ave. NW. Tickets sold in advance only for the screening at the embassy. Wednesday at Landmark's E Street Cinema, 555 11th St. NW.
THE HOUSE OF BRANCHING LOVE 6:30 p.m. and April 24 at 7:30 p.m. A vindictive couple in the process of getting a divorce are forced to continue living with each other in this dark comedy. Landmark's E Street Cinema, 555 11th St. NW.
WOMEN WITHOUT MEN at 6:30 p.m. and April 23 at 9 p.m. Shirin Neshat explores the lives of five women seeking freedom. Regal Cinemas Gallery Place Stadium 14, 707 Seventh St. NW.

April 23
LEARNING FROM LIGHT: THE VISION OF I.M. PEI 6:30 p.m. and April 22 at 6:30 p.m. Filmmakers followed Chinese-American architect I.M. Pei to figure out a design for Qatar's Museum of Islamic Art. Director Bo Landin will be at the screening. Goethe-Institut, 812 Seventh St. NW.
MAO'S LAST DANCER 6:30 p.m. and April 24 at 9 p.m. The true story of Li Cunxin, a young dancer who grew up in communist China. After being allowed to go to America for an exchange program, he refused to go back. There will be a dance performance by the Asia Heritage Foundation before Friday's screening. Avalon Theatre, 5612 Connecticut Ave. NW.
SOUNDTRACK FOR A REVOLUTION 6:30 p.m. Director Daniel Sturman's movie explores the connections between music and the Civil Rights movement. A panel discussion with Sturman and others guests follows the screening. Regal Cinemas Gallery Place Stadium 14, 707 Seventh St. NW.

April 24
THE SUN BEHIND THE CLOUDS: TIBET'S STRUGGLE FOR FREEDOM 7 p.m. The film updates viewers about the relationship between China and Tibet. Regal Cinemas Gallery Place Stadium 14, 707 Seventh St. NW.
LOOKING FOR ERIC 9:15 p.m. A man whose life is falling apart is transformed when the ghost of former Manchester United star Eric Cantona appears to help him out. Avalon Theatre, 5612 Connecticut Ave. NW.

April 25
SOUL KITCHEN 4 p.m. The closing night feature tells the story of a new chef who transforms a diner by adding an aphrodisiac to a dessert. There will be a party at Bar Louie after the screening. Regal Cinemas Gallery Place Stadium 14, 707 Seventh St. NW. $20, includes admission to the party.