Film By Desson Thomson

"Syriana" is a premium-octane thriller about a world that has become insidiously dependent on oil. Writer-director Stephen Gaghan, whose screenplay for "Traffic" was a top-down expose of the global drug industry, repeats the procedure here and succeeds even more persuasively. See review on Page 28.

Theater By Peter Marks

Studio Theatre's "Guantanamo," through Sunday, is a kind of tribunal, offering testimony from lawyers, human rights activists and relatives of both the detainees and those who died in the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks as well as from the detainees themselves. The directness of the play is novel in a town in which an astonishing paucity of theater by the major companies attempts to talk back to power. Call 202-332-3300.

Exhibition By Michael O'Sullivan

It's good Gail Gorlitzz and Karin Birch decided to call their two-person show at the McLean Project for the Arts "Seeds" instead of something else that rhymes with it. Although both artists incorporate beads (yes, beads) in their richly evocative work -- Gorlitzz in biomorphic sculptures, Birch on poetic, mixed-media canvases -- neither can be pigeonholed. Their work is more about possibility than limitation. "Seeds: Gail Gorlitzz and Karin Birch" runs through Jan. 14. Call 703-790-1953.

Music By Richard Harrington

The Kennedy Center is in the mood to show some love to James Moody on the occasion of his 80th birthday: The veteran jazz saxophonist and composer of the classic "Moody's Mood for Love" will be honored Saturday in the Eisenhower Theater in a concert featuring fellow NEA Jazz Masters Slide Hampton, Jimmy Heath and Paquito D'Rivera, as well as Roy Hargrove, Randy Brecker, Mulgrew Miller, Claudio Roditi and Antonio Hart. Call 202-467-4600.

The Kennedy Center celebrates James Moody's 80th birthday Saturday.