There’s still time to nominate local icons for Best of D.C.
You’re a hardcore anime enthusiast. You like cat ears on your girls, dog ears on your boys, and yukata on both. So you’ll probably curse those scheduled projector cool-downs that’ll have you scrambling between the three animation-screening rooms at Katsucon 12 (this year’s installment of an annual convention of anime, video games, and other things Japanese-pop-culture). Still, there’s plenty to soak in: While Cat Soup (at 11 p.m. Friday, Feb. 17)—in which a young cat goes on a violent, mind-bending journey to save his sister after her soul is stolen—offers a peek at Japan’s psychedelic side, a Korean entry, My Beautiful Girl Mari (at 7 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 18), follows Nam-woo, a boy lonely after losing his friends and relatives to death and distance, into the fantasy world—and girl—who help him deal with solitude. Animated entirely by Makoto Shinkai on a Macintosh, Voices of a Distant Star (at 9:30 a.m. Sunday, Feb. 19) shows the possibilities of the short form—a lovingly crafted work that tells the story of a teenage couple whose lives are torn apart by war. (Howl’s Moving Castle, pictured, shows at 7 p.m. Saturday.) There’s a fourth screening room if you wanna clean the palate with a little live-action, and Pon (Phone) (at 11 p.m. Friday, Feb. 17)—in which a young girl’s cell phone terrorizes her—exemplifies the East Asian horror-film subgenre in which everyday electronic gizmos are terrifying. And if your eyes need a break, Cartoon Network Adult Swim voice-actor-turned-nerdcore rapper mc chris brings his tightly wound lyrics to the stage Saturday night. The convention runs from Friday, Feb. 17, through Sunday, Feb. 19, at the Omni Shoreham Hotel, 2500 Calvert St. NW. $50 for three days, $20–$35 for a one-day pass. www.katsucon.com. (Brett Rogers)