Capsule reviews by Desson Howe unless noted. OPENINGS THE HEMP REVOLUTION (Unrated) -- Hemp, it turns out, provides many more things than a high old time. Australian filmmaker Anthony Clarke's instructive, advocacy-minded documentary gives you fun facts to know and share at the next dinner party (or smoke-in). George Washington grew it, for instance. And Queen Victoria sipped hemp tea to ease menstrual cramps. You can make clothes, paper and edible food containers out of hemp. Its oil is medicinal. It preserves arid soil. Acre for acre, as a source of paper, hemp reaps more money than trees; and it's not as rapidly depleted. The movie, which is pretty dull viewing, to be honest, spends most of its time extolling the virtues of the non-drug hemp. We also hear about the United States' determined official stand against marijuana, even for medicinal purposes. Then, in the last, briefest section of the film comes the campy part, during which we see montages of stoned faces and hear about the joys of getting buzzed. "If you don't smoke cannabis," says the oddly cadenced "ethobotanist" Terence McKenna, "you may spend your evening balancing your checkbook. If you do smoke cannabis, you may spend your evening contemplating the causes of the Greek renaissance." Or keeping your face off the floor. Contains brief nudity and footage of stoned people. At the Biograph. IT'S MY PARTY (R) -- Here's an AIDS movie that tests positive for maladies that include dreadful writing and amateurish direction. When gay L.A. architect Nick Stark (Eric Roberts) learns he has brain lesions that will kill him within days, he throws himself a farewell party. Supportive pals (led by Bronson Pinchot and Paul Regina) and loving family members (including Marlee Matlin and Lee Grant) react with vengeful rudeness when Nick's ex-lover, Brandon (Gregory Harrison), shows up. Brandon, who dumped Nick soon after Nick tested positive, now must persuade the group to let him stick around till the party's over. At the end, Nick plans to take pills and die. Two days of tears, squabbles, promises, apologies, oaths and reconciliations ensue -- and the suffering is all ours, thanks to a toxic shower of hackneyed dialogue. "How are you doing?" Brandon is asked by a fellow party guest. "It's my worst nightmare," he sighs. That's easy to believe. Contains profanity and mild sexual situations. Cineplex Odeon Dupont Circle. -- Kevin McManus THE JOURNEY OF AUGUST KING (PG-13) -- In 1815, well before abolitionism and the Underground Railroad, helping a runaway slave could be a perilous deed. North Carolina farmer August King (Jason Patric), the hero of this beautifully filmed story, finds himself unable to resist the deed. Traveling the long road home from market, he learns of a wealthy landowner's desperate search for an escaped slave. As bounty hunters with yelping dogs track the young, beautiful Annalees Williamsburg (Thandie Newton) through the woods, she sneaks into August's camp and asks for help. No, he replies firmly, but he's touched by the girl's plight and soon hides her in his cart. As they proceed fearfully along the trail, they find just enough solitude to get to know each other. August is a widower with a woeful tale, and he listens carefully to the few things Annalees will say about her former subjugation. His vow to deliver the girl to safety is one of the film's few unsubtle moments. For the most part, Aussie director John Duigan lets powerful images tell the story of August's ennobling feat. Sam Waterson appears in a cameo role, but the outstanding performances are those of Patric and Larry Drake (of "L.A. Law"), who makes the landowner a well-rounded character. One brief but disturbingly violent scene, one very mild sex scene. At the Key. -- Kevin McManus LAST SUMMER AT THE HAMPTONS (R) -- Henry Jaglom, quite possibly the most self-indulgent film director in America, gives us another fake-art, ensemble vanity production. Victoria Foyt (Jaglom's wife, who also co-wrote this film) plays a Hollywood star who's a guest for a weekend at the East Hamptons summer home of her acting coach (Viveca Lindfors). Lindfors is matriarch to an extended, highly theatrical family of actors and writers. And Foyt meets them all, one by excruciating one. Basically, "Last Summer" -- a pseudo-Chekhovian series of amateurish encounters among the performers -- seems designed to titillate the cast only. As the supposedly brilliant actress, who refused to sell out in Hollywood, the overacting Lindfors is the most tedious of the lot. Foyt, who imitates a seal to get over her tensions and falls for Lindfors's foppish, playwright-son Jon Robin Baitz, is an annoying, close second. The uninteresting remainder includes Andre Gregory (all but parodying himself as an effete theatrical director), the herpetically countenanced Jaglom as Foyt's West Coast agent, and Martha Plimpton, playing another angry and fussy slacker. At the Cineplex Odeon West End 5-7. LITTLE INDIAN, BIG CITY (PG) -- This movie should be kept around to prove what a terrible thing it is to dub a film. Thanks to incompetent lip-synching (performed by dreadful off-screen actors), this French movie (a big hit in France, whatever that means) is rendered even dumber than it was in the first place. Parisian investment hustler Stephan (Thierry Lhermitte) flies to the Amazon to divorce his estranged wife of 13 years, Patricia (Miou Miou), so he can marry his nutty new age fiancee, Charlotte (Arielle Dombasle). He finds out that Patricia was pregnant when she walked out on him and meets his son (Ludwig Briand), who has been raised as an Indian. The son's Indian name is Mimi-Siku which means -- I am not making this up -- Cat Pee. Dad brings, uh, Cat Pee over to Paris, where the wild teenager terrorizes Stephan's fiancee and the neighbors with his pet tarantula and his penchant for blowing drugged darts. Predictably, Stephan (who's in the middle of an unscrupulous deal with the Russian mafia) begins to think twice about which woman he really wants. But you won't think twice about the mistake you've made watching this movie. Contains profanity, talk of making out and getting pregnant, violence to animals, the slapping of a child in the face and dubbing. Area theaters. RACE THE SUN (PG-13) -- In this movie, a collection of low-income Hawaiian high school students, known derisively as "lolos," design a solar-powered car and enter an annual world championship cross-country race in Australia. If you've seen "Cool Runnings" (about the Jamaican bobsled team that made it to the Winter Olympics), you'll know what kind of inspirational comedy this movie is trying to be. Unfortunately, its interesting ethnic flavor (the characters are colorful and endearing) isn't enough to sustain this lame formula. Halle Berry, the teacher who inspires the racing team, and James Belushi, the school engineer who comes along for the Australian meet, play limited roles as supportive authority. The experience is pleasant but increasingly dull; by the time you reach the sixth and final day of the race, you're ready to scream. Contains sexual situations, teenage drinking and some profanity. Area theaters. CAPTION: "Little Indian, Big City": Ludwig Briand gets a sky-high view of Paris.