Home The Washington Diplomat January 2015 Films – January 2015

Films – January 2015












 Afternoon of a Faun: Tanaquil Le Clercq

Directed by Nancy Buirski

(U.S., 2014, 91 min.)

The story of prima ballerina Tanaquil Le Clercq is an epic tale of genius, grace, doubt and ultimate tragedy. Arguably the greatest American dancer of the 20th century (and muse to both Jerome Robbins and George Balanchine), she fell victim to polio in her late 20s.

National Gallery of Art

Sun., Jan. 4, 11 a.m. and 4 p.m.,

Sun., Jan. 11, 11 a.m. and 4 p.m.

The Imitation Game

Directed by Morten Tyldum

(U.K./U.S., 2014, 114 min.)

During the winter of 1952, British authorities entered the home of mathematician, cryptanalyst and war hero Alan Turing (Benedict Cumberbatch, in a stirring performance) to investigate a reported burglary. They instead ended up arresting Turing himself on charges of “gross indecency,” unwittingly incriminating the pioneer of modern-day computing.

AFI Silver Theatre

Dec. 25 to Jan. 15

Joachim Prinz: I Shall Not Be Silent

Directed by Rachel Eskin Fisher and Rachel Nierenberg Pasternak

(U.S., 2014, 57 min.)

Footage, archival recordings, interviews with notable contemporaries and family members create a captivating and moving portrait of Joachim Prinz, one of the most outspoken rabbis living under the Nazi regime who went on to become a leading American civil rights activist.

Washington DCJCC

Tue., Jan. 20, 7:30 p.m.

Moana: Restoration with Sound

Directed by Monica and Robert Flaherty

(U.S., 1926/2014, 98 min.)

In 1924, American filmmaker Robert Flaherty journeyed to the Samoan island of Savai’i encumbered with several tons of filmmaking gear to make “Moana,” a narrative film about the island’s way of life. Fifty years later, Flaherty’s youngest daughter Monica, who had traveled with him to Savai’i on the first trip, returned there to record local ambient sounds and traditional songs.

National Gallery of Art

Wed., Jan. 14, 7 p.m.


Directed by Paul King

(U.K./France, 2014, 95 min.)

A young English boy befriends a talking bear he finds at a London train station in this live-action feature based on the series of popular children’s books by Michael Bond.

Area theaters

Opens Fri., Jan. 16

The Woman in Black 2

Directed by Tom Harper

(U.K., 2014)

Forty years after the first haunting at Eel Marsh House, a group of children evacuated from WWII London arrive, awakening the house’s darkest inhabitant.

Area theaters

Opens Fri., Jan. 2


 Bending the Rules

Directed by Behnam Behzadi

(Iran, 2013, 94 min.)

An amateur theater troupe that has been invited to perform outside Iran. Most of its young members have lied to their families about where they are going, but when the lead actress tells her father the truth, he forbids her to leave. On the eve of their departure, she and her cohorts struggle with whether to confront or secretly defy him.

Freer Gallery of Art

Fri., Jan. 30, 7 p.m.

Sun., Feb. 1, 2 p.m.

Fish & Cat

(Mahi va gorbeh)

Directed by Shahram Mokri

(Iran, 2013, 134 min.)

Based on a true story about a rural Iranian restaurant that served human flesh, the film’s premise has the makings of a Hollywood horror movie, as a group of college students set up camp at a remote lake for the annual kite festival, where, unbeknownst to them, the owners of the only nearby eatery are sizing them up as both customers and potential ingredients — but this is no slasher flick.

Freer Gallery of Art

Fri., Jan. 16, 7 p.m.,

Sun., Jan. 18, 2 p.m.

Manuscripts Don’t Burn

(Dast-neveshtehaa nemisoosand)

Directed by Mohammad Rasoulof

(Iran, 2013, 125 min.)

Made in defiance of a 20-year ban on filmmaking, this incendiary thriller by Mohammad Rasoulof was inspired by the Iranian government’s attempt to murder several prominent writers and intellectuals in 1995, delivering a bold indictment of Iran’s brutal and secretive security apparatus.

Freer Gallery of Art

Fri., Jan. 9, 7 p.m.,

Sun., Jan. 11, 2 p.m.

What’s the Time in Your World?

(Dar donya ye to saat chand ast?)

Directed by Safi Yazdanian

(Iran, 2014, 101 min.)

The brilliant Leila Hatami stars as a woman who, on a whim, returns to Iran after living in France for two decades. Upon arriving in her hometown of Rasht, she meets a frame-maker who claims to know her well, but of whom she has no recollection.

Freer Gallery of Art

Fri., Jan. 23, 7 p.m.,

Sat., Jan. 24, 2 p.m.


In Bloom

(Grzeli nateli dgeebi)

Directed by Nana Ekvtimishvili and Simon Gross

(Georgia, 2014, 162 min.)

Set in Georgia in the early 1990s, during a time of political turbulence, hardship, breadlines, boredom and casual violence, a boy gives a gun to 14-year-old Natia, who, along with her best friend Eka, make the best of circumstances in which choices are limited, particularly for young women (screens with “Waiting for Mum (Deda)” (Georgia, 2011, 8 min.)).


Tue., Jan. 27, 6:30 p.m.

Blue Mountains aka An Unbelievable Story

(Tsisperi mtebi aka Daujerebeli ambavil/ Golubye gory)

Directed by Eldar Shengelaia

(U.S.S.R., 1984, 97 min.)

An inspired satire by one of Georgia’s leading directors, “Blue Mountains” is a disarming and cleverly precise critique of bureaucracy as stifling stasis, set in a publishing house in Tbilisi. There, a writer and his manuscript submission are all but ignored as the employees, a colorful cast of characters, carry on with their private affairs and outside interests, oblivious to his needs.


Mon., Jan. 12, 6:30 p.m.


Directed by Salomé Jashi

(Georgia, 2011, 58 min.)

The title suggests a film about this famous tourist paradise in the mountains of Georgia. The story, however, takes place in locales off the beaten track, like the ornate restaurant where the principal patrons are a tired dog and a handful of immigrants (screens with “Felicità”).


Mon., Jan. 26, 6:30 p.m.


Directed by Salomé Alexi

(Georgia, 2009, 30 min.)

Tamara lives and works in Italy, but when her husband in Georgia dies in a car accident, Tamara’s illegal status doesn’t allow her to leave Italy to attend his funeral, so she participates via a long-distance cellular call (screens with “Bakhmaro”).


Mon., Jan. 26, 6:30 p.m.

The Machine Which Makes Everything Disappear

(Manqana, romelic kvelafers gaaqrobs)

Directed by Tinatin Gurchiani

(Georgia/Germany, 2012, 101 min.)

A film director organizes a casting call for 15- to 23-year-olds, and the results form the basis for a revealing portrait of Georgian society. Interview footage with the youths is combined with vérité segments of the subjects in their daily lives.


Thu., Jan. 29, 6:30 p.m.

The White Caravan

(Tetri karavani/ Belyy karavan)

Directed by Eldar Shengelaya and Tamaz Meliava

(U.S.S.R., 1964, 97 min.)

Martia, an experienced shepherd, is moving his herd to the winter pastures. But the life of shepherds is mundane and complex to the extent that even a minor mistake is fraught with serious consequences (Georgian and Russian).


Tue., Jan. 13, 6:30 p.m.


A Place in Heaven

Directed by Yossi Madmony

(Israel, 2013, 117 min.)

This quasi-Biblical, epic drama spans the history of Israel through 40 years and three wars, yet, like Yossi Madmony’s previous film “Restoration,” at its heart it is about father-son relationships.

Washington DCJCC

Tue., Jan. 6, 7:30 p.m.


The Butterfly’s Dream

(Il sogno della farfalla)

Directed by Marco Bellocchio

(Italy/France/Switzerland, 1994, 112 min.)

Massimo, a young classical actor, will speak only when performing on stage. His family speculates that his motive for this vow of silence in private life must be Massimo’s rebellion against his mother, a writer. One day a director spots Massimo in “The Prince of Homburg” and offers him a part, but the only way he can do that is to convince the mother to write a play about Massimo’s life.

National Gallery of Art

Sat., Jan. 10, 4:30 p.m.

The Prince of Homburg

(Il principe di Homburg)

Directed by Marco Bellocchio

(Italy, 1997, 85 min.)

In Marco Bellocchio’s adaptation of Heinrich von Kleist’s 1809 “The Prince of Homburg,” a Prussian officer is tricked during the course of a complex dream on the night before a key battle, causing him to misjudge the timing of his attack. Even so, all is not lost.

National Gallery of Art

Sat., Jan. 10, 2:30 p.m.




Directed by Gabriel Mascaro

(Brazil, 2013, 76 min.)

Brazil has more domestic workers per capita than any other country. Director Gabriel Mascaro selected seven adolescents from various regions and socioeconomic levels to film their own maid at home for a week (screens with “Santiago”).

American University

Sun., Jan. 25, 4:30 p.m.


Directed by Jorge Bodanzky and Orlando Senna

(Brazil/W. Germany/France, 1974, 90 min.)

Iracema, a naïve young woman from the Amazon, meets a truck driver and together they take a road trip over the unfinished Trans-Amazon Highway in this landmark of Brazilian cinema.

American University

Fri., Jan. 23, 7 p.m.

Like Water Through Stone

Directed by Marília Rocha

(Brazil, 2009, 85 min.)

In the remote Espinhaço Mountains of Minas Gerais, four young women approach the end of their sheltered and relatively calm adolescence, even as the outside world begins to intrude.

American University

Fri., Jan. 30, 7 p.m.


Directed by João Moreira Salles

(Brazil, 2007, 80 min.)

In the early 1990s, João Moreira Salles began filming this portrait of the butler who had served his own family for decades. Salles returned to his project much later (after Santiago’s death), resulting in his complex portrayal of a fascinating man (screens with “Housemaids”).

American University

Sun., Jan. 25, 4:30 p.m.


An Unusual Exhibition

(Arachveulebrivi gomopena/ Neobyknovennaya vystavka)

Directed by Eldar Shengelaia

(U.S.S.R., 1968, 96 min.)

Eldar Shengelaia’s reflective, provocative tragi-comedy introduces a sculptor who, in order to feed his family, develops a niche specializing in carving monument tombstones bearing the likeness of the departed.


Thu., Jan. 15, 6:30 p.m.


Force Majeure aka Tourist

Directed by Ruben Östlund

(Sweden/Denmark/Norway, 2014, 118 min.)

Picture-perfect Swedes Tomas, Ebba and their two kids are enjoying a pleasant family getaway at a French ski resort, until an avalanche strikes. Although everyone walks away unharmed, Tomas’s gut reaction to the incident will shake his marriage to its core.

AFI Silver Theatre

Thu., Jan. 15, 7:15 p.m.