Home The Washington Diplomat March 2018 Films – March 2018

Films – March 2018











Bahasa Indonesian






*EFF = Environmental Film Festival
**FF = Francophonie Festival
***NAFF = New African Film Festival
****CIFF = Capital Irish Film Festival


High Fantasy

Directed by Jenna Cato Bass

(South Africa/Luxembourg, 2017, 71 min.)

Lexi and her friends Xoli, Tatiana and Thami head to her family’s isolated Northern Cape farm for an overnight camping trip, capturing the excursion on their cell phones. When they awake the next morning to discover they’ve all swapped bodies, the friends are forced to examine each other’s identities (NAFF).

AFI Silver Theatre

Sat., March 10, 10 p.m.,

Tue., March 13, 9:45 p.m.



Beauty and the Dogs

Directed by Kaouther Ben Hania

(Tunisia/France, 2017, 100 min.)

At a student party, Mariam, a young Tunisian woman, catches the eye of Youssef. A few hours later, she wanders the streets in a state of shock. It’s the beginning of a long night during which she will have to fight for her rights and dignity to be respected. But how can justice be done when the perpetrators themselves are the arbiters of justice? (FF)

Embassy of France

Tue., March 6, 7 p.m.



Directed by Mohamed Ali El Mejboud

(Morocco, 2016, 94 min.)

This popular Moroccan film follows the hilarious misadventures of a financially challenged film director nicknamed Dallas. The director’s desperate need for cash leads him to join forces with a wealthy businessman in making a film about the man’s grandfather. As shooting begins, the production hits a snag: The lead actor dies of a heart attack. Dallas is left with no choice but to continue shooting — with the actor’s dead body (FF).

S. Dillon Ripley Center

Wed., March 14, 6:45 p.m.


The Insult


Directed by Ziad Doueiri

(Lebanon/Belgium/Cyprus/France/U.S., 2017, 112 min.)

In today’s Beirut, an insult blown out of proportion escalates, resulting in Tony, a Lebanese Christian, and Yasser, a Palestinian refugee, facing off in court. A media circus quickly begins to grow around the high-profile case, which exacerbates the already-high tensions between the Muslim and Christian groups in Lebanon’s Arab community.

Landmark’s Bethesda Row Cinema


Until the Birds Return

Directed by Karim Moussaoui

(Algeria/France/Germany, 2017, 113 min.)

In contemporary Algeria, past and present collide in the lives of a newly wealthy property developer, an ambitious neurologist impeded by wartime wrongdoings, and a young woman torn between the path of reason and sentiment (NAFF; Arabic and French).

AFI Silver Theatre

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

Bahasa Indonesian

Marlina the Murderer in Four Acts

Directed by Mouly Surya

(Indonesia/France/Malaysia/Thailand, 2017, 95 min.)

Set in the beautifully rugged landscape of Indonesia’s Simba Island, the film’s eponymous heroine, a widow living alone in the remote countryside, is assaulted and robbed of her cattle by a gang of bandits. After dispatching her attackers with some poison soup, she sets off on a journey of redemption.

Freer Gallery of Art

Fri., March 23, 7 p.m.



The 15:17 to Paris

Directed by Clint Eastwood
(U.S., 2018, 94 min.)

Three Americans discover a terrorist plot aboard a train while in France. he film follows the course of the friends’ lives, from the struggles of childhood through finding their footing in life, to the series of unlikely events leading up to the attack.

Angelika Mosaic 



Directed by Chris Jordan
(U.S., 2018, 98 min.)

On one of the remotest islands on Earth, tens of thousands of albatross chicks lie dead on the ground, their bodies filled with plastic. Chris Jordan and his film crew witnessed cycles of birth, life, and death of these magnificent creatures as a multilayered metaphor for our times (EFF).

National Geographic
Sat., March 24, 4 p.m.



Directed by Cláudia Varejão
(Portugal, 2016, 112 min.)

For over 2,000 years, the Ama-San dived in Japan. Bound by sisterhood, women are the primary source of income and essential to their families having carved out a rare space of respect for themselves by diving in the Pacific Ocean with no aid from air tanks for underwater breathing (EFF; English and Japanese).

Japan Information and Culture Center
Fri., March 16, 6:30 p.m.


Anote’s Ark

Directed by Matthieu Rytz
(Canada, 2018, 77 min.)

The low-lying Pacific nation of Kiribati faces a daunting challenge: imminent annihilation from sea-level rise. As Anote Tong, Kiribati’s president, races to find a way to protect his nation’s people and maintain their dignity, many Kiribati are already seeking safe harbor overseas (EFF).

National Geographic
Mon., March 16, 7 p.m.



Directed by Alex Garland
(U.K./U.S., 2018, 115 min.)

Based on Jeff VanderMeer’s best-selling “Southern Reach Trilogy,” “Annihilation” stars Natalie Portman as a biologist who signs up for a dangerous, secret expedition where the laws of nature don’t apply. 

Angelika Mosaic
Atlantic Plumbing Cinema


Black Panther

Directed by Ryan Coogler
(U.S., 2018)

T’Challa, after the death of his father, the King of Wakanda, returns home to the isolated, technologically advanced African nation to succeed to the throne and take his rightful place as king.

Angelika Mosaic
Atlantic Plumbing Cinema



Directed by Karina Holden
(Australia, 2017, 75 min.)

Half of all marine life has been lost in the last 40 years. By 2050 there will be more plastic in the sea than fish. “Blue” takes us on a provocative journey into the ocean realm, witnessing a critical moment in time when the marine world is on a precipice (EFF).

Naval Heritage Center
Tue., March 20, 7 p.m.


The Breadwinner

Directed by Nora Twomey
(Ireland/Canada/Luxembourg, 2017, 94 min.)

Parvana is an 11-year-old girl growing up under the Taliban in Afghanistan in 2001. When her father is wrongfully arrested, Parvana cuts off her hair and dresses like a boy in order to provide for her family (CIFF).

AFI Silver Theatre
Sat., March 3, 12:30 p.m.


Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story

Directed by Alexandra Dean
(U.S., 2018, 90 min.)

Hollywood star Hedy Lamarr was known as the world’s most beautiful woman — Snow White and Cat Woman were both based on her iconic look. However, her incredible beauty stood in the way of her being given the credit she deserved as an ingenious inventor whose pioneering work eventually helped revolutionize modern communication. An Austrian Jewish émigré, she wanted to help defeat the Nazis. She invented a covert “frequency hopping” communications system to make Allied torpedoes unstoppable, and then patriotically gave her 1942 patent to the Navy, who ignored it and told her to sell kisses for war bonds instead.

Landmark’s E Street Cinema
Opens Fri., March 2


Breathe in the Roots

Directed by Indrias G. Kassaye
(Ethiopia/U.S., 2017, 75 min.)

This is the story of Ty Christen Joseph, a young African-American English teacher from Brooklyn who goes on a spiritual journey to discover more about his African ancestral heritage (NAFF; English and Amharic). 

AFI Silver Theatre
Fri., March 9, 7:15 p.m.


Cacú: Un Cambio Por La Vida

Directed by Marvin del Cid
(Dominican Republic, 2017, 79 min.)

This feature-length environmentally-focused documentary film tells the story of five fishermen from Manresa, a poor neighborhood to the West of Santo Domingo’s Distrito Nacional, and how they transitioned from sea turtle nest predators to conservationists of the species (EFF).

Landmark’s E Street Cinema
Mon., March 19, 7 p.m.


Call Me By Your Name

Directed by Luca Guadagnino
(Italy/France/Brazil/U.S., 2017, 132 min.)

In Northern Italy in 1983, 17-year-old Elio begins a relationship with visiting Oliver, his father’s research assistant, with whom he bonds over his emerging sexuality, their Jewish heritage and the beguiling Italian landscape (English, Italian, French and German).

AFI Silver Theatre
Angelika Mosaic
Landmark’s Bethesda Row Cinema
Landmark’s E Street Cinema


The China Hustle

Directed by Jed Rothstein
(U.S., 2018, 82 min.)

This unsettling and eye-opening documentary follows a Wall Street web of fraud revolving Chinese companies, the American stock market, the 2008 financial crash and the opportunistic greed behind the biggest heist you’ve never heard of. 

Landmark’s Theatres
Opens Fri., March 30


The Chocolate Case

Directed by Benthe Forrer
(Netherlands, 2016, 90 min.)

“The Chocolate Case” follows the incredible journey of three Dutch journalists, who tried to persuade large corporations to end the use of child labor in the chocolate industry, but when rebuffed, decide to take matters into their own hands by creating the world’s first slave-free chocolate bar (EFF).

Royal Netherlands Embassy
Thu., March 22, 6 p.m.


The Cured

Directed by David Freyne
(Ireland, 2018, 95 min.)

What happens when the undead return to life? In a world ravaged for years by a plague that turned the infected into zombie-like cannibals, a cure has been at last found. The wrenching process of reintegrating the survivors back into society begins, but the ex-zombies are hated, feared and distrusted by the general population.

West End Cinema
Opens Fri., March 9


Darkest Hour

Directed by Joe Wright
(U.K., 2017, 125 min.)

During the early days of World War II, the fate of Western Europe hangs on the newly-appointed British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, who must decide whether to negotiate with Hitler, or fight on against incredible odds.

AFI Silver Theatre
Atlantic Plumbing Cinema
Landmark’s Bethesda Row Cinema


A Date for Mad Mary

Directed by Darren Thornton
(Ireland, 2016, 82 min.)

When “Mad” Mary McArdle returns to her small Irish hometown after a short spell in prison — for something she’d rather forget — everything and everyone seems different (CIFF).

AFI Silver Theatre
Sun., March 4, 2:30 p.m.



Directed by Chico Pereira
(U.S., 2017, 86 min.)

Manolo leads a simple life in the south of Spain. He has two loves: his animals, in particular his donkey, and taking long wanders through nature. Against the advice of his doctor, he decides to plan one last walk by re-tracing the Trail of Tears, a brutal forced 2200-mile trek through the Native American Cherokee Nation (EFF).

AFI Silver Theatre
Sun., March 18, 7 p.m.


The Farthest

Directed by Emer Reynolds
(Ireland, 2017, 121 min.)

Irish documentarian Emer Reynolds tackles the captivating tales of the people and events behind one of humanity’s greatest achievements in exploration: NASA’s Voyager mission, which celebrated its 40th anniversary in August, 2017 (EFF and CIFF).

AFI Silver Theatre
Sun., March 4, 4:30 p.m.
Carnegie Institution for Science
Fri., March 23, 7 p.m.


Game Changers

Directed by Louie Psihoyos
(U.S., 2018, 88 min.)

James Wilks — elite special forces trainer and winner of the Ultimate Fighter — as he travels the world on a quest for the truth behind the world’s most dangerous myth: that meat is necessary for protein, strength and optimal health (EFF).

Carnegie Institution for Science
Sat., March 24, 7 p.m.


Her Broken Shadow

Directed by Dilman Dila
(Uganda, 2016, 75 min.)

In Uganda’s first sci-fi film, two lonely writers struggle with their novels in different dimensions. When the boundary between their worlds collapses, the two women discover that each is the creation of the other — that they are both protagonists in the novel the other is striving to complete (NAFF).

AFI Silver Theatre
Fri., March 16, 9:45 p.m.


Human Flow

Directed by Ai WeiWei
(Germany, 2017, 145 min.)

More than 65 million people around the world have been forced from their homes to escape famine, climate change and war. Filmmaker Ai Weiwei examines the staggering scale of the refugee crisis and its profoundly personal human impact (EFF).

Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden
Sat., March 17, 2 p.m.


I Am Not a Witch

Directed by Rungano Nyoni
(Zambia/U.K./France/Germany, 2017, 92 min.)

Accused of witchcraft, 9-year-old Shula is banished from her village in Zambia and sent to a “witch camp” to live alongside other exiled women. As Shula navigates her new life, she must decide whether to accept her fate or risk the consequences of seeking freedom (NAFF).

AFI Silver Theatre
Thu., March 8, 7:15 p.m.


I, Tonya

Directed by Craig Gillespie
(U.S., 2017, 119 min.)

Competitive ice skater Tonya Harding rises amongst the ranks at the U.S. Figure Skating Championships, but her future in the activity is thrown into doubt when her ex-husband intervenes.

Landmark’s E Street Cinema


It Tolls for Free

Directed by Andrew Gallimore
(Ireland, 2016, 74 min.)

Through an intriguing conspiracy of circumstance and courage, Irishwoman Mary Elmes found herself center stage in two of the major theaters of warfare in the 20th century (CIFF).

AFI Silver Theatre
Sun., March 4, 12:30 p.m.



Directed by Brett Morgen
(U.S., 2017, 90 min.)

Director Brett Morgen uses a trove of never-before-seen 16-mm footage unearthed after 50 years from the National Geographic archives to shed fresh light on trailblazing conservationist Jane Goodall (EFF).

National Geographic
Mon., March 19, 7 p.m.


Kalushi: The Story of Solomon Mahlangu

Directed by Mandla Dube
(South Africa, 2017, 107 min.)

After being brutally beaten by apartheid police during the 1976 Soweto uprisings, Solomon Mahlangu goes into exile and joins the liberation movement, enrolling in military training in Angola. En route to Johannesburg, his fellow soldier accidentally provokes a shooting on the streets, killing two innocent civilians and sending the men to trial. Although Mahlangu did not commit the shooting, the state seeks the highest punishment from the court: death by hanging (NAFF; English, Afrikaans and Tsotsi-taal).

AFI Silver Theatre
Sun., March 18, 7:30 p.m.


The Last Animals

Directed by Kate Brooks
(U.S./U.K., 2017, 92 min.)

“The Last Animals” is a story about an extraordinary group of people who go to incredible lengths to save the planet’s last animals. The documentary follows the conservationists, scientists and activists battling poachers and transnational trafficking syndicates to protect elephants and rhinos from extinction (EFF).

National Geographic
Thu., March 15, 7 p.m.


Leaning into the Wind: Andy Goldsworthy

Directed by Thomas Riedelsheimer
(U.K./Germany, 2018, 93 min.)

This documentary follows renowned British artist Andy Goldsworthy on his exploration of the world and himself through ephemeral and permanent workings on the landscape, cities and with his own body (English, Portuguese and French).

Landmark’s Theatres
Opens Fri., March 16


The Leisure Seeker

Directed by Paolo Virzi
(Italy/France, 2018, 112 min.)

A runaway couple go on an unforgettable journey in the faithful old RV they call The Leisure Seeker, traveling from Boston to Key West. They recapture their passion for life and their love for each other on a road trip that provides revelation and surprise right up to the very end.

Angelika Mosaic
Landmark’s Bethesda Row Cinema
Opens Fri., March 9



Directed by Aaron and Amanda Kopp
(Swaziland/Qatar/U.S., 2017, 77 min.)

In this beautifully animated documentary-hybrid, a Swazi girl named Liyana embarks on a dangerous quest to rescue her young twin brothers (NAFF).

AFI Silver Theatre
Sat., March 10, 1:30 p.m.,
Wed., March 14, 5:30 p.m.


Love and Bananas

Directed by Ashley Bell
(U.S., 2018, 76 min.)

Ashley Bell and a team of elephant rescuers, led by world-renowned elephant conversationalist Lek Chailert, embark on a daring 48-hour mission across Thailand to rescue a captive Asian elephant from a trekking camp and set her free (EFF).

Naval Heritage Center
Fri., March 16, 7 p.m.



Directed by Aisling Walsh
(Ireland/Canada, 2017, 115 min.)

Exploring Canadian folk artist Maud Lewis’s life in all of its heartbreak and triumph, Aisling Walsh captures the trajectory of her incredible rise to artistic fame alongside her unlikely romance with a reclusive fishmonger who initially hires her to be his housekeeper (CIFF).

AFI Silver Theatre
Sat., March 3, 6:45 p.m.



Directed by Stephen Burke
(Ireland/U.K./Sweden/Germany, 2017, 92 min.)

Based on the true story of the 1983 mass break-out of 38 IRA prisoners from the then-newly built HM Prison Maze in Northern Ireland, “Maze” follows the relationship between two men on opposite sides of the prison bars (CIFF).

AFI Silver Theatre
Fri., March 2, 7:45 p.m.


Molly’s Game

Directed by Aaron Sorkin
(China/U.S., 2018, 140 min.)

Molly Bloom, a beautiful young Olympic-class skier, ran the world’s most exclusive high-stakes poker game for a decade before being arrested in the middle of the night by 17 FBI agents wielding automatic weapons. Her players included Hollywood royalty, sports stars, business titans, and finally, unbeknownst to her, the Russian mob.

West End Cinema


Namibia: The Struggle for Liberation

Directed by Charles Burnett
(Namibia, 2007, 161 min.)

Charles Burnett’s 2007 epic tells the story of the first president of Namibia, Sam Nujoma, charting his political awakening and his part in his country’s fight for its freedom from occupation by South Africa (NAFF; English and Afrikaans).

AFI Silver Theatre
Sun., March 18, 4:30 p.m.



Directed by Mark Pellington
(U.S., 2018, 114 min.)

A mosaic of stories about love and loss, “Nostalgia” explores our relationships to the objects, artifacts and memories that shape our lives. 

Angelika Mosaic
Landmark’s Bethesda Row Cinema


Oh Lucy!

Directed by Atsuko Hirayanagi
(Japan/U.S., 2018, 96 min.)

Setsuko is a lonely, chain-smoking, past-her-prime office worker in Tokyo who is browbeaten into enrolling in an unorthodox English class, where she meets a handsome young American instructor, John. He requires her to wear a curly blonde wig and take on an American alter ego named “Lucy.” Setsuko finds her new identity liberating, and quickly develops romantic feelings for John — to the degree that when he suddenly disappears without explanation she wants to track him down (English and Japanese).

Landmark’s Theatres
Opens Fri., March 9


Open Land

Directed by Arno Oehri
(U.S./Liechtenstein, 90 min.)

The Embassy of Liechtenstein will be hosting a free screening of the newly released jazz documentary “open land,” which offers an intimate portrait of its protagonist, jazz legend John Abercrombie, who died in August 2017. This reflection is as poetic and atmospherically dense as Abercrombie’s music. Screenings will include a discussion with the film’s director, Arno Oehri, who will be visiting from Liechtenstein.

Busboys and Poets at 5th and K Streets
Wed., March 28, 6 p.m.


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


The Party

Directed by Sally Potter
(U.K., 2018, 71 min.)

To celebrate her long-awaited prestigious post as a shadow minister for health and, hopefully, the stepping stone to party leadership, the newly appointed British opposition politician, Janet, is throwing a party for friends at her London flat. But once the guests arrive it becomes clear that not everything is going to go down as smoothly as the red wine.

Angelika Mosaic
Landmark’s Bethesda Row Cinema
Landmark’s E Street Cinema


Phantom Thread

Directed by Paul Thomas Anderson
(U.S., 2017, 130 min.)

Set in 1950s London, Reynolds Woodcock is a renowned dressmaker whose fastidious life is disrupted by a much young, strong-willed woman, Alma, who becomes his muse and lover.

AFI Silver Theatre
Landmark’s Bethesda Row Cinema
Landmark’s E Street Cinema 



Directed by Brendan Muldowney
(Ireland/Belgium/U.S., 2017, 96 min.)

A small band of Catholic monks keeps to a solemn routine on a remote Irish coast. Then a stranger arrives. He comes wearing the white robes of the Cistercian order, bearing papers and demanding the unthinkable (CIFF; English, Irish, French and Latin).

AFI Silver Theatre
Sat., March 3, 9:15 p.m.


Poc Na Ngael

Directed by Éamonn Ó Cualáin
(Ireland, 2017, 50 min.)

In Éamonn Ó Cualáin’s fascinating documentary, Irish hurling legend Ger Loughnane reveals the little-known origin story behind the Canadian obsession that is ice hockey (CIFF).

AFI Silver Theatre
Sat., March 3, 4:45 p.m.


The Post

Directed by Steven Spielberg
(U.S., 2018, 115 min.)

A cover-up that spanned four U.S. presidents pushed the countrys first female newspaper publisher and a hard-driving editor to join an unprecedented battle between journalist and government.

AFI Silver Theatre
Atlantic Plumbing Cinema


Red Sparrow

Directed by Francis Lawrence
(U.S., 2018, 140 min.)

Ballerina Dominika Egorova is recruited to Sparrow School, a Russian intelligence service where she is forced to use her body as a weapon. But her first mission, targeting a CIA agent, threatens to unravel the security of both nations.

Angelika Mosaic
Atlantic Plumbing Cinema
Opens Fri., March 2


The Royal Hibiscus Hotel

Directed by Ishaya Bako
(Nigeria, 2017, 90 min.)

In this sprightly Nollywood romantic comedy, Ope is struggling to make it as a chef in London. She dreams of opening her own Afro-fusion restaurant, but after some setbacks decides to head home to Lagos to reinvigorate her family’s hotel (NAFF).

AFI Silver Theatre
Sat., March 10, 7:45 p.m.,
Mon., March 12, 9:20 p.m.


The Secret Scripture

Directed by Jim Sheridan
(Ireland, 2016, 108 min.)

An elderly patient in a psychiatric hospital recounts the story of how, as a young woman, she met and fell in love with Michael McNulty, arousing the jealousy of the local priest, whose obsessive love for her led to her ruination (CIFF).

AFI Silver Theatre
Sat., March 3, 2:30 p.m.


The Shape of Water

Directed by Guillermo del Toro
(U.S., 2017, 123 min.)

This otherworldly fairy tale, set against the backdrop of Cold War era America circa 1962, takes place in the hidden high-security government laboratory where lonely Elisa is trapped in a life of isolation. Elisa’s life is changed forever when she and co-worker Zelda discover a secret classified experiment.

AFI Silver Theatre
Angelika Mosaic
Landmark’s Bethesda Row Cinema
Landmark’s E Street Cinema


Thank You for the Rain

Directed by Julia Dahr
(Kenya/Norway/U.K., 2017, 87 min.)

Five years ago, Kenyan farmer Kisilu Musya started using his camera to capture the life of his family and his village, and the impact that climate change is having on both. When a violent storm throws him and a Norwegian filmmaker together, we see him transform from father to community leader to activist on the global stage (EFF and NAFF).

AFI Silver Theatre
Sun., March 18, 2:30 p.m.
Landmark’s E Street Cinema
Thu., March 22, 7 p.m.


Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Directed by Martin McDonagh
(U.K./U.S., 2017, 115 min.)

In this darkly comic drama, a mother personally challenges the local authorities to solve her daughter’s murder, when they fail to catch the culprit.

AFI Silver Theatre
Angelika Mosaic
Landmark’s Bethesda Row Cinema
Landmark’s E Street Cinema


Untamed Romania

Directed by Tom Barton-Humphreys
(U.K., 2018, 88 min.)

This feature-length film celebrates Romania’s astounding natural beauty and sheer diversity of wild animals (EFF).

Carnegie Institution for Science
Sun., March 18, 7 p.m.



Directed by Eva Munyiri
(Kenya/South Africa, 2017, 72 min.)

In this autobiographical portrait of family, migration and assimilation, the director’s journey to discover more about her paternal grandmother, Waithira, leads her to Germany, Wales and Kenya, where her two cousins and eldest sister — all named Waithira — live (NAFF).

AFI Silver Theatre
Sat., March 10, 11:45 a.m.,
Tue., March 13, 5:30 p.m.


WASTED! The Story of Food Waste

Directed by Anna Chai
(U.S., 2017, 90 min.)

Every year 80 percent of the world’s water, 40 percent of the world’s land and 10 percent of the world’s energy is dedicated to growing the food we eat, yet in the same year 1.3 billion tons of food is thrown out. “WASTED” sheds light on the pressing issue of food waste (EFF).

Carnegie Institution for Science
Sat., March 17, 7 p.m.



Directed by Pascale Lamche
(South Africa/France/Netherlands/Finland, 2017, 84 min.)

Winnie Madikizela Mandela is one of the most supremely controversial, misunderstood and intriguingly powerful contemporary female political figures (NAFF).

AFI Silver Theatre
Sun., March 11, 5:30 p.m.



Tehran Taboo

Directed by Ali Soozandeh

(Austria/Germany, 2017, 90 min.)

Employing a rich color palette and beautiful animation, German-based Iranian expatriate Ali Soozandeh conjures a vision of Tehran’s underbelly that would be impossible to achieve by more traditional means. Weaving together the stories of a sex worker, a musician and a party girl engaged to a violent brute, Soozandeh reveals the resourcefulness with which Tehranis seek out illicit pleasures.

AFI Silver Theatre

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


When God Sleeps

Directed by Till Schauder

(U.S./Germany, 2017, 88 min.)

Unfolding against the backdrop of the 2015 Paris terrorist attacks in the Bataclan concert venue and European right-wing backlash against Middle Eastern refugees, this film deftly weaves the journey of exiled Iranian musician Shahin Najafi (“the Salman Rushdie of rap”) with historical context and intimate biographical detail.

AFI Silver Theatre

Mon., March 5, 7:15 p.m.



The African Storm

Directed by Sylvestre Amoussou

(Benin/France, 2017, 89 min.)

Set in a fictitious, diamond-rich African nation called Tangara, the film charts the fallout after the nation’s president decides to nationalize all means of production built on its territory by non-Tangarans. Seeing their business interests slipping away, the Western corporations that have been mining the land for decades will resort to any available means to reclaim their mines (NAFF).

AFI Silver Theatre

Fri., March 16, 5:15 p.m.



Directed by Paul Tom

(Canada, 2017)

“Bagages” enables adolescent immigrants to describe their recent arrival to Montreal in their own words. Through drama class workshops, they reveal the tale of their migration and integration (FF; to register, email denis.chouinard@international.gc.ca).

Embassy of Canada

Wed., March 21, 7 p.m.



Directed by Apolline Traoré

(Burkina Faso/France, 2017, 90 min.)

The paths of four very different women converge in this free spirited, at times gritty, road movie set across western Africa (NAFF).

AFI Silver Theatre

Sun., March 11, 7:20 p.m.



Directed by Jean-Philippe Duval

(Quebec, 2016, 109 min.)

In 1863, a group of snow-bound travelers invokes the devil, who gives them a flying canoe for them to go home. When one of them finds his wife about to die in labor, he makes a pact with the devil to save her and his newborn daughter Liza. He then cheats the devil of his prize by sacrificing himself. Twenty-five years later, Liza wants to marry her beloved, but the devil is determined to ruin her happiness (FF).

Alliance Française de Washington

Thu., March 8, 7 p.m.



Directed by Modi Barry and Cédric Ido

(France, 2017, 81 min.)

Dapperly dressed Charles, nicknamed the Prince, is the charismatic leader of a group of hustlers that cajole potential clients into the hair salons around Paris’s Chateau d’Eau metro station (NAFF).

AFI Silver Theatre

Sat., March 17, 7 p.m.



Directed by Alain Gomis

(Senegal/France/Belgium/Germany/Lebanon, 2017, 123 min.)

Félicité is a proud, fiercely independent single mother who works as a singer in the Congolese capital of Kinshasa. When her 14-year-old son suffers a terrible — and expensive — traffic accident, Félicité’s life is thrown into turmoil (NAFF; French and Lingala).

AFI Silver Theatre

Sun., March 11, 2:45 p.m.



Directed by Emmanuel Gras

(France, 2017, 97 min.)

A young man from a village in the Congo hopes to offer his family a better future. His only resources are his own two hands, the surrounding bush and an iron will (EFF; French and Swahili).

Embassy of France

Fri., March 16, 7 p.m.



Directed by Jennifer Peedom

(Australia, 2017, 74 min.)

A unique cinematic and musical collaboration between the Australian Chamber Orchestra and BAFTA-nominated director Jennifer Peedom, “Mountain” is a dazzling exploration of our obsession with mountains (EFF).

National Geographic

Sat., March 17, 4 p.m.

AFI Silver Theatre

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


Paris: A Wild Story

Directed by Frédéric Fougea

(U.S., 2016, 90 min.)

Paris is known throughout the world for the beauty of its architecture and the wealth of its heritage. But what of the 500,000 trees and the 2,900 wild species of fauna and flora that inhabit the City of Light? (EFF).

Embassy of France

Tue., March 20, 7 p.m.


Ranger and Leopard

Directed by Fathollah Amiri

(Iran, 2017, 53 min.)

A hard-working ranger hears about the presence of a Persian Leopard in area under his protection in Isfahan, Iran, but nobody has spotted any Persian Leopard there for about forty years (EFF).

National Geographic

Sun., March 18, 4 p.m.



Directed by Anjali Nayar and Hawa Essuman

(Canada, 2017, 80 min.)

Liberian activist Silas Siakor is a tireless crusader, fighting to crush corruption and environmental destruction in the country he loves (EFF).

National Geographic

Thu., March 22, 7 p.m.



Directed by Berni Goldblat

(Burkina Faso/France, 2017, 84 min.)

Following the death of his French mother, 13-year-old Ady lives alone with his father in Lyon. Edging toward delinquency, Ady is sent to his father’s hometown in Burkina Faso. Once there, he is entrusted to the guardianship of his uncle, a fisherman and disciplinarian who intends to put the boy back on the right track (NAFF; French and Dioula).

AFI Silver Theatre

Sat., March 17, 5 p.m.



Directed by Daouda Coulibaly

(France/Senegal/Mali, 2016, 95 min.)

When Ladji, a twenty-year-old minibus driver in Bamako, is unfairly passed over for a promotion, the young man turns to smuggling drugs between Mali and neighboring countries to provide for himself and save his sister from prostitution (FF).

Embassy of France

Tue., March 27, 7 p.m.


City of the Sun

Directed by Rati Oneli

(Georgia, 2017, 100 min.)

The lives, dreams and destinies of extraordinary characters unfold amidst the ruins of a semi- abandoned mining town in Georgia (EFF).

National Gallery of Art

Sat., March 17, 2 p.m.




Directed by Samuel Maoz

(Israel/Switzerland/Germany/France, 2017, 108 min.)

A troubled family face the facts when something goes terribly wrong at their son’s desolate military post.

Angelika Mosaic

Opens Fri., March 16


A Beautiful Star

Directed by Daihachi Yoshida

(Japan, 2017, 127 min.)

In this sci-fi dark comedy, members of a seemingly normal Tokyo family discover that they are aliens from different planets at war over Earth’s fate. Since humans have so badly botched Earth’s management, some of the aliens want to exterminate them, while others want to help save the planet (EFF).

Freer Gallery of Art

Sun., March 18, 2 p.m.



Directed by Kaneto Shindo

(Japan, 1064, 103 min.)

Deep within the windswept marshes of war-torn medieval Japan, an impoverished mother and her daughter-in-law eke out a lonely, desperate existence — dorced to murder lost samurai and sell their belongings for grain.

Freer Gallery of Art

Wed., March 7, 2 p.m.


Ramen Heads

Directed by Koki Shigeno

(Japan, 2018, 93 min.)

Ramen — the perfectly slurpable combination of broth and noodles — is considered an edible embrace, comforting ephemera and an art form by master chefs and legions of fans. Japan’s reigning king of ramen, Osamu Tomita, takes us into his kitchen and deep into his world, revealing the secrets of every step of his obsessive process, sharing recipes, trade secrets and flavor philosophies.

Landmark’s Theatres

Opens Fri., March 23


Tokyo Idols

Directed by Kyoko Miyake

(Canada/U.K./Japan, 2017, 88 min.)

A pop culture big business in Japan since the 1990s, “idols” are teenage female singers who perform sugary tunes for legions of fanatical fans. Kyoko Miyake’s documentary looks behind the scenes of this phenomenon, focusing on Rio Hiirago who, at nineteen, will soon age out of idol-dom.

Freer Gallery of Art

Fri., March 16, 7 p.m.


Diamond Island

Directed by Davy Chou

(France, 2016, 103 min.)

Like many boys from the Cambodian countryside, Bora leaves his native village to find work in Phnom Penh. He gets a job in construction on Diamond Island, a downtown island being turned into a luxury residence. Working by day and chasing girls at night, Bora runs into his long-lost older brother Solei, who is enjoying a suspiciously lavish lifestyle and introduces his brother to his world of high-end nightclubs and pie-in-the-sky dreams (FF).

Embassy of France

Tue., March 13, 7 p.m.



Angels Wear White

Directed by Vivian Qu

(China/France, 2017, 107 min.)

When a teenage beach resort employee captures footage of a powerful politician coercing two 12-year-old girls into his room, she becomes the unwilling center of a potentially explosive scandal that becomes a searing indictment of political corruption and the treatment of women in today’s China.

Freer Gallery of Art

Fri., March 2, 7 p.m.


Have a Nice Day

Directed by Jian Liu

(China, 2018, 77 min.)

A city in southern China and a bag containing a million yuan draw several people from diverse backgrounds with different personal motives into a bloody conflict.

Angelika Pop-Up

Opens Fri., March 2


A Fantastic Woman

(Una Mujer Fantástica)

Directed by Sebastián Lelio

(Chile/Germany/Spain/U.S., 2018, 104 min.)

Daniela Vega shines in a wonderful performance as a transgender nightclub singer, Marina, in love with Orlando, a successful businessman 20 years her senior. He has left his disapproving family to be with her, and they are planning a happy future together when Orlando suddenly falls ill and dies, leaving Marina stunned and bereft. Instead of being able to mourn her lover, Marina is attacked and excluded.

West End Cinema


By the Time It Gets Dark

Directed by Anocha Suwichakornpong

(Thailand, 2016, 105 min.)

Moving languidly between narrative layers, this film is both a poetic exploration of the filmmaking process and an attempt to address how a violent incident from Thailand’s past influences its present.

Freer Gallery of Art

Sun., March 4, 2 p.m.



Five Fingers for Marseilles

Directed by Michael Matthews

(South Africa, 2017, 120 min.)

Near the colonial town of Marseilles in the rugged Eastern Cape of South Africa, a group of rebellious friends dubbed the Five Fingers uses well-placed eggs and slingshots to drive off the oppressive police force. But when the cops seize quick-tempered Tau’s childhood love, he goes from throwing eggs to shooting bullets (NAFF; Xhosa and Southern Sotho).

AFI Silver Theatre

Sun., March 11, 9:15 p.m.,

Thu., March 15, 9:15 p.m.