We know D.C. Get our free newsletter to stay in the know.

No one who saw Monty Python’s first few big-screen outings would have guessed that a member of the troupe would someday become a notable film director. In fact, the one who did—Terry Gilliam—is credited only as co-director on two of the Pythons’ four films, all of which are featured in “Monty Python at the Movies.” The saga begins with 1971’s And Now for Something Completely Different, essentially a gag reel of remade skits from the TV show’s first two seasons. Next came 1975’s Monty Python and the Holy Grail, which sustained a single tale throughout, although one of the essential jokes was that the guys didn’t have the budget to do so. Better-funded but conceptually similar, 1979’s Life of Brian tiptoes through blasphemy with surprising grace to tell the story of Brian Cohen, born in a manger near that other kid. Finally, the gang returned to sketch comedy, but with a bigger budget and R-rated material, for 1983’s The Meaning of Life. The series runs to Monday, Jan. 7, at the AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center, 8633 Colesville Road, Silver Spring. $9.75. (301) 495-6700; see Showtimes for this week’s films; see afi.com/silver/new/ for a complete schedule.