Home The Washington Diplomat December 2016 Films – December 2016

Films – December 2016


























Directed by Kristina Grozeva and Petar Valchanov

(Bulgaria/Greece, 2016, 101 min.)

When a reclusive railway worker stumbles upon a pile of cash on the tracks, he turns it over to the police and is hailed as a model citizen by the propaganda-hungry Ministry of Transport, rewarded with a new wristwatch and promptly thrust into the national spotlight.

AFI Silver Theatre

Tue., Dec. 6, 5 p.m.,

Thu., Dec. 8, 9:45 p.m.


On the Other Side

(S One Strane)

Directed by Zrinko Ogresta

(Croatia/Serbia, 2016, color, 85 min.)

After 20 years’ estrangement, a Zagreb nurse receives a phone call out of the blue from her war-criminal husband in Belgrade, saying that he wants to see her and the kids again after all these years.

AFI Silver Theatre

Sun., Dec. 4, 12:30 p.m.,

Wed., Dec. 7, 5:15 p.m.,

Thu., Dec. 8, 5:15 p.m.


Land of Mine

(Under Sandet)

Directed by Martin Zandvliet

(Denmark/Germany, 2016, 101 min.)

Spring 1945: After five years of Nazi occupation, Denmark is now liberated. A group of German POWS — recent conscripts from a desperate country, barely teenagers — are given a dangerous assignment by their Danish overseers: comb a local beach and remove the 45,000 mines planted by the Germans (Danish and German).

AFI Silver Theatre

Sat., Dec. 10, 2 p.m.




Directed by Jan Bultheel

(Belgium/France/Netherlands, 2015, 92 min.)

Belgium 1914: When world champion boxer Jean Mordant returns from a tournament to discover his daughter has been brutally assaulted by German soldiers, he signs up for the war effort in a bid to fight back against his daughter’s aggressors.

AFI Silver Theatre

Sun., Dec. 11, 2:30 p.m.




Directed by Robert Zemeckis

(U.S., 2016, 124 min.)

“Allied” is the story of intelligence officer Max Vatan (Brad Pitt), who in 1942 North Africa encounters French Resistance fighter Marianne Beausejour (Marion Cotillard) on a deadly mission behind enemy lines. Reunited in London, their relationship is threatened by the extreme pressures of the war.

Angelika Pop-Up

Atlantic Plumbing Cinema


Directed by Denis Villeneuve

(U.S., 2016, 116 min.)

A linguist is recruited by the military to assist in translating alien communications (English, Russian and Mandarin).

Angelika Mosaic

Atlantic Plumbing Cinema

Landmark’s Bethesda Row Cinema

Bulgarian Rhapsody

Directed by Ivan Nichev

(Bulgaria/Israel, 2014, 108 min.)

In 1943, the Jews of Greater Bulgaria are forced to adhere to Germany’s rule. The friendship of teenagers Moni (a Jewish kid from Sofia) and Giogio (the son of the Commissar for Jewish Affairs’ chauffeur) is tested when they both fall in love with Shelly, a beautiful 17-year-old Jewish girl from Greece (Bulgarian, German and Ladino).

Washington DCJCC

Tue., Dec. 13, 7:30 p.m.

Certain Women

Directed by Kelly Reichardt

(U.S., 2016, 107 min.)

The lives of three women intersect in small-town America, where each is imperfectly blazing a trail.

West End Cinema


Directed by Mick Jackson

(U.S./U.K., 2016, 119 min.)

The whole world knows the Holocaust happened. Now she needs to prove it. Based on the acclaimed book, “Denial” recounts Deborah E. Lipstadt’s legal battle for historical truth against David Irving, who accused her of libel when she declared him a Holocaust denier.

Landmark’s Bethesda Row Cinema

West End Cinema

The Eyes of My Mother

Directed by

(U.S., 2016, 76 min.)

This bizarre and disturbing story begins peacefully enough: In their secluded farmhouse, a mother, formerly a surgeon in Portugal, teaches her daughter Francisca to understand anatomy and be unfazed by death. One afternoon, a mysterious visitor horrifyingly shatters the idyll of Francisca’s family life, deeply traumatizing the young girl, but also awakening some unique curiosities (English and Portuguese).

West End Cinema

Opens Fri., Dec. 2

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

Directed by

(133 min.)

In this all-new adventure returning us to the wizarding world created by J.K. Rowling (the “Harry Potter” series), Newt Scamander has just completed a global excursion to find and document an extraordinary array of magical creatures and finds himself in 1926 New York, where some of Newt’s fantastic beasts have escaped.

Angelica Mosaic

Atlantic Plumbing Cinema

Germans & Jews

Directed by Janina Quint and Tal Recanati

(U.S., 2016, 76 min.)

Through personal stories, “Germans & Jews” explores Germany’s transformation as a society, from silence about the Holocaust to facing it head on.

Washington DCJCC

Tue., Dec. 6, 6:30 p.m. (reception; screening at 7:30 p.m.)


Directed by Miranda Bowen

(U.K./Malta, 2015, 84 min.)

When Lucille and Joe move to the beautiful Maltese island of Gozo hoping to escape the past, their new life proves too good to be true.

AFI Silver Theatre

Mon., Dec. 5, 5 p.m.,

Tue., Dec. 6, 9:45 p.m.

Hacksaw Ridge

Directed by Mel Gibson

(Australia/U.S., 2016, 139 min.)

World War II American Army Medic Desmond T. Doss, who served during the Battle of Okinawa, refuses to kill people and becomes the first man in American history to win the Medal of Honor without firing a shot.

Angelika Mosaic

Handsome Devil

Directed by Bertrand Bonello and John Butler

(Ireland, 2016, 95 min.)

Irish novelist-turned-director John Butler’s sweet and hilarious coming-of-age comedy follows a rebellious music-loving outcast forced to share a room with mysterious star athlete.

AFI Silver Theatre

Mon., Dec. 12, 7 p.m.,

Fri., Dec. 16, 7:10 p.m.

I, Daniel Blake

Directed by Ken Loach

(U.K./France/Belgium, 2016, 100 min.)

An aging Newcastle carpenter is denied benefits formerly afforded to him and subjected to the nightmarish, Kafkaesque bureaucracy of the British welfare system.

AFI Silver Theatre

Sat., Dec. 10, 5:20 p.m.,

Wed., Dec. 14, 7 p.m.


Directed by Pablo Larraín

(U.S./Chile/France, 2016, 99 min.)

Following the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, first lady Jacqueline Kennedy fights through grief and trauma to regain her faith, console her children and define her husband’s historic legacy.

AFI Silver Theatre

Angelika Mosaic

Landmark’s Cinema

Opens Fri., Dec. 9


Directed by Garth Davis

(Australia, 2016, 120 min.)

A 5-year-old Indian boy gets lost on the streets of Calcutta, thousands of miles from home. He survives many challenges before being adopted by a couple in Australia; 25 years later, he sets out to find his lost family (English, Bengali and Hindi).

Angelika Mosaic

Opens Fri., Dec. 9

Manchester by the Sea

Directed by Kenneth Lonergan

(U.S., 2016, 137 min.)

This story of a working-class family living in a Massachusetts fishing village for generations, is a deeply poignant, unexpectedly funny exploration of the power of familial love, community, sacrifice and hope.

Angelika Mosaic

Landmark’s Bethesda Row Cinema

Landmark’s E Street Cinema

Queen of Katwe

Directed by Mira Nair

(South Africa/U.S., 2016, 124 min.)

“Queen of Katwe” is the colorful true story of a young girl selling corn on the streets of rural Uganda whose world rapidly changes when she is introduced to the game of chess. She quickly advances through the ranks in tournaments, but breaks away from her family to focus on her own life.

Landmark’s Bethesda Row Cinema


Directed by John Ford

(U.S., 1939, 96 min.)

A group of people traveling on a stagecoach find their journey complicated by the threat of Geronimo and learn something about each other in the process (preceded by “L’Avventura”).

National Gallery of Art

Wed., Dec. 28, 12:30 p.m.

A Street Cat Named Bob

Directed by Roger Spottiswoode

(U.K., 2016, 103 min.)

When a recovering drug addict found an injured, ginger street cat curled up in the hallway of his sheltered accommodation, he had no idea just how much his life was about to change. Christening him Bob, he slowly nursed the cat back to health and then sent him on his way, imagining he would never see him again. But Bob had other ideas.

West End Cinema




Directed by Kadri Kõusaar

(Estonia, 2016, 89 min.)

In this pitch-black crime comedy set in a small-town, Elsa is a quietly resentful woman taking care of her adult son after a shooting leaves him comatose. No one, including the bumbling village policeman, knows who the assailant might be, or why the son withdrew a large sum of money before the attack.

AFI Silver Theatre

Sat., Dec. 10, 12 p.m.,

Thu., Dec. 15, 9:10 p.m.


The Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Mäki

Directed by Juho Kuosmanen

(Finland/Sweden/Germany, 2016, 92 min.)

Finnish boxer Olli Mäki earns a title fight with American featherweight champ Davey Moore in the summer of 1962. The first world title fight held in Helsinki, the event is the subject of relentless hype, but Olli’s heart is consumed by a girl from his hometown.

AFI Silver Theatre

Sat., Dec. 10, 1:15 p.m.,

Mon., Dec. 12, 7:20 p.m.


The Ardennes


Directed by Robin Pront

(Belgium, 2015, 93 min.)

When a home invasion goes wrong, Kenny is left behind to take the rap, while his accomplices — his girlfriend and his brother — escape. Four years later, Kenny gets out of prison to find that his former partners-in-crime have gone straight (Flemish and French).

AFI Silver Theatre

Tue., Dec. 6, 7:15 p.m.,

Wed., Dec. 7, 9:45 p.m.


After Love

(L’Économie du Couple)

Directed by Joachim Lafosse

(Belgium/France, 2016, 100 min.)

Belgian auteur Joachim Lafosse takes an intimate and absorbing look at the dismantling of a 15-year marriage over the course of several months.

AFI Silver Theatre

Sat., Dec. 10, 3:15 p.m.,

Sun., Dec. 11, 7 p.m.

The Brand New Testament

Directed by Jaco Van Dormael

(Belgium/France/Luxembourg, 2015, 112 min.)

God lives in human form as a cynical writer with his young opinionated daughter in present-day Brussels, Belgium. She concludes that her dad is doing a terrible job and decides to rewrite the world, which leaves God angry, powerless and adamant to get his power back.

Landmark’s Cinema

Opens Fri., Dec. 16


Directed by Paul Verhoeven

(France/Germany/Belgium, 2016, 131 min.)

A rich and powerful woman, who is the head of her own successful video game company that specializes in violent erotic games, brings the same ruthless attitude to her love life as to business. But she is forced to face her own powerlessness when she is attacked in her home by an unknown assailant, changing her life forever.

AFI Silver Theatre

Angelika Mosaic

Landmark’s Bethesda Row Cinema

Landmark’s E Street Cinema


Directed by François Ozon

(France/Germany, 2016, 113 min.)

French veteran Adrien visits the grave of a German soldier killed in the war. The fallen man’s parents and former fiancée assume Adrien must be a friend from the soldier’s days studying music in Paris, a misconception that the fragile-nerved Adrien allows them to believe (French and German).

AFI Silver Theatre

Sat., Dec. 10, 7:30 p.m.

Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles

Directed by Chantal Akerman

(Belgium/France, 1976, 201 min.)

Belgian filmmaker Chantal Akerman’s early tour de force — an examination of a woman’s ritualized behavior inside her bourgeois Brussels flat, recorded as a sequence of domestic tableaux in real time — gradually reaches the point of pure tragedy.

National Gallery of Art

Sat., Dec. 24, 1 p.m.

Louise by the Shore

(Louise en Hiver)

Directed by Jean-François Laguionie

(France/Canada, 2016, 75 min.)

Both sweet and melancholy, the story revolves around Louise, an unassuming old lady who becomes stranded alone in a seaside town during winter, and decides to stay put and make do until summer rolls around.

AFI Silver Theatre

Thu., Dec. 15, 5:30 p.m.,

Sun., Dec. 18, 4:10 p.m.


Directed by Jacques Perrin and Jacques Cluzaud

(France/Germany, 2016, 97 min.)

Four years in the making, “Seasons” presents some of the most amazing, breathtaking and gorgeous widescreen nature footage ever seen, so close that you feel part of the action. Filmmakers Jacques Perrin and Jacques Cluzaud traveled to the lush green forests that emerged across Europe following the last Ice Age to chronicle the history of the seasons for human and animal.

Landmark’s E Street Cinema

Things to Come


Directed by Mia Hansen-Løve

(France/Germany, 2016, 100 min.)

What happens when the life you’ve worked so hard to build falls apart all at once? A philosophy teacher soldiers through the death of her mother, getting fired from her job and dealing with a husband who is leaving her for another woman (French, English and German).

AFI Silver Theatre

Sat., Dec. 3, 2 p.m.,

Sun., Dec. 4, 3:30 p.m.

Landmark’s Cinema

Opens Fri., Dec. 9


(En Amont du Fleuve)

Directed by Marion Hänsel

(Belgium/Netherlands/Croatia, 2016, 90 min.)

The death of a father brings two half-brothers together in this intimate adventure film through the Croatian countryside.

AFI Silver Theatre

Sun., Dec. 11, 12:30 p.m.,

Tue., Dec. 13, 5 p.m.



Stefan Zweig: Farewell to Europe

Directed by Maria Schrader

(Austria/Germany/France, 2016, 106 min.)

German author Stefan Zweig’s story of exile and despair following Hitler’s rise to power is told through five discrete vignettes ranging from the Brazilian countryside to Buenos Aires to New York City (multiple languages).

AFI Silver Theatre

Sun., Dec. 11, 9:05 p.m.,

Wed., Dec. 14, 7:15 p.m.



Beloved Days

Directed by Constantinos Patsalides

(Cyprus/Italy/U.K., 2015, 75 min.)

In 1970, a Cypriot village participated in its first film shooting, “The Beloved” starring movie icon Raquel Welch, and became a film destination — a future that was terminated abruptly by the Turkish invasion of 1974 and the changes that followed (Greek, English and Italian).

AFI Silver Theatre

Tue., Dec. 13, 7:15 p.m.


Directed by Athina Rachel Tsangari

(Greece, 2015, 105 min.)

Six middle-aged men venture out to sea on a luxury yacht, an annual tradition where they compete in an Olympiad of bizarre games of ridiculous one-upmanship.

AFI Silver Theatre

Thu., Dec. 8, 7 p.m.



Bella e perduta

(Lost and Beautiful)

Directed by Pietro Marcello

(Italy/France, 2015, 87 min.)

The foolish servant Pulcinella is sent from the depths of Mt. Vesuvius to present-day Campania to honor the last wishes of the poor shepherd Tommaso: his mission is to save a young buffalo called Sarchiapone.

National Gallery of Art

Sun., Dec. 11, 4:30 p.m.

Fire at Sea


Directed by Gianfranco Rosi

(Italy/France, 2016, 108 min.)

This atmospheric exploration documents the island of Lampedusa, home to a small population of fishing families, an overworked coast guard station and thousands of newly arrived immigrants from Africa and the Middle East.

AFI Silver Theatre

Fri., Dec. 2, 2:45 p.m.,

Wed., Dec. 7, 7:15 p.m.

Io, Arlecchino

Directed by Giorgio Pasotti and Matteo Bini

(Italy, 2015, 90 min.)

When Paolo, a well-known TV host in Rome, returns to his hometown near Bergamo to visit his ailing father (an actor who plays an enigmatic character Harlequin in the local theater troupe), he manages to rekindle his own love for the theater and the pleasant rituals of his past.

National Gallery of Art

Sat., Dec. 10, 3:30 p.m.


Directed by Michelangelo Antonioni

(Italy/France, 1961, 143 min.)

Though ostensibly a mystery involving a missing woman, the film is more a psychological play that builds tension through impressions of space and time, and particularly landscape — from the Tyrrhenian Sea and Aeolian Islands to the Sicilian port town of Milazzo (Italian, English and Greek; followed by “Stagecoach”).

National Gallery of Art

Wed., Dec. 28, 12:30 p.m.

Like Crazy

(La Pazza Gioia)

Directed by Paolo Virzì

(Italy/France, 2016, 118 min.)

Beatrice is a strong-willed though undeniably delusional mental patient at a facility in Tuscany, where she tells herself that she’s just there for a rest and treats the staff and fellow patients as if they are servants (opening night of the European Union Film Showcase).

AFI Silver Theatre

Thu., Dec. 1, 7:30 p.m. (with reception)

Thu., Dec. 8, 7:15 p.m.


(Pericle il Nero)

Directed by Stefano Mordini

(Italy/Belgium/France, 2015, 104 min.)

Pericle has served his low-level Belgian mob boss faithfully for years, beginning in his youth as a luckless orphan in the Belgian Neapolitan community. When Pericle causes the accidental death of a member of a rival clan, he flees to France where, ironically, he discovers a truer sense of his own identity (Italian and French).

AFI Silver Theatre

Tue., Dec. 13, 9:15 p.m.,

Fri., Dec. 16, 9:20 p.m.

Sweet Dreams

(Fai Bei Sogni)

Directed by Marco Bellocchio

(Italy, 2016, 134 min.)

Journalist Massimo writes a high-profile advice column, though ironically, this perennial moper would seem a good candidate for professional help himself, having never gotten over the loss of his beloved mother at a young age.

AFI Silver Theatre

Sun., Dec. 11, 4:20 p.m.,

Mon., Dec. 12, 2:45 p.m.



The Face of Another

Directed by Hiroshi Teshigahara

(Japan, 1966, 124 min.)

In this “staggering work of existential science fiction” (Criterion Collection), the great Tatsuya Nakadai plays a disfigured man who agrees to undergo a radical procedure: a face transplant. But his new identity brings with it the temptation to give in to his darkest impulses.

Smithsonian American Art Museum

Sat., Dec. 10, 4 p.m.



The Eagle Huntress

Directed by Otto Bell

(U.K./Mongolia/U.S., 2016, 87 min.)

This spellbinding documentary follows Aisholpan, a 13-year-old nomadic Mongolian girl who is fighting to become the first female eagle hunter in twelve generations of her Kazakh family.

Landmark’s Bethesda Row Cinema

Landmark’s E Street Cinema



The Handmaiden


Directed by Chan-wook Park

(South Korea, 2016, 144 min.)

In this gripping and sensual tale of two women, a young Japanese lady living on a secluded estate, and a Korean woman who is hired to serve as her new handmaiden, but is secretly plotting with a conman to defraud her of a large inheritance (Korean and Japanese).

West End Cinema





Directed by Laila Pakalniņa and Szabolcs Hajdu

(Latvia/Estonia/Poland, 2015, 96 min.)

In a collective farm in Latvia, a young hero named Janis reports his brutish father’s anti-Soviet leanings to the farm’s leadership.

AFI Silver Theatre

Wed., Dec. 14, 5:15 p.m.,

Fri., Dec. 16, 5:05 p.m.



United States of Love

(Zjednoczone Stany Milosci)

Directed by Tomasz Wasilewski

(Poland/Sweden, 2016, 106 min.)

Set in a nondescript Polish town in 1990, just as the Communist bloc has begun to crumble, this film explores the intertwined love lives of four women residing in a housing complex.

AFI Silver Theatre

Wed., Dec. 14, 9:05 p.m.,

Sat., Dec. 17, 1:45 p.m.





Directed by Bogdan Mirică

(Romania/France/Bulgaria/Qatar, 2016, 104 min.)

City boy Roman (Dragoș Bucur) inherits a large piece of undeveloped land from his grandfather. Beginning with the discovery on the property of a severed foot still in its shoe, and followed by various hints dropped by the local police chief, the criminal past of Roman’s grandfather comes to light.

AFI Silver Theatre

Sat., Dec. 10, 9:45 p.m.,

Thu., Dec. 15, 9:30 p.m.



Directed by Cristian Mungiu

(Romania/France/Belgium, 2016, 128 min.)

Following a random street crime that left his daughter somewhat shaken, a doctor becomes concerned that she might not perform well on her upcoming finals in this story on the larger ramifications of corruption.

AFI Silver Theatre

Sun., Dec. 4, 5:45 p.m.,

Mon., Dec. 5, 6:45 p.m.



The Teacher


Directed by Jan Hřebejk

(Slovakia/Czech Republic, 2016, 102 min.)

In this sharp and funny takedown of totalitarianism, the arrival of a new teacher at a Bratislava school in 1983 sparks a moral dilemma.

AFI Silver Theatre

Fri., Dec. 9, 5:05 p.m.,

Sat., Dec. 17, 7:30 p.m.



A Serious Game

(Den Allvarsamma Leken)

Directed by Pernilla August

(Sweden, 2016, 115 min.)

When an aspiring artist meets a budding journalist, the attraction is immediate, but the penniless and ambitious pair both move on to more lucrative matches. Years later, time has not dimmed their passion and they embark on an affair that threatens to destroy the lives of everyone it touches.

AFI Silver Theater

Thu., Dec. 15, 3:15 p.m.,

Sun., Dec. 18, 1:45 p.m.