Sign up for our free newsletter
Free D.C. news, delivered to your inbox daily.
TO OCT. 23
Since Yugoslavia shattered 15 years ago, most of the films exported to the West from the region have been either harrowing civil-war dramas or political black comedies. But there’s another genre that neatly addresses the ex-Yugo mood: the Hitchcockian thriller. South by Southeast (at 8 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 23) closes this survey of recent films from Serbia and Montenegro with the suitably paranoiac tale of an actress whose 4-year-old daughter may be missing or may never have existed. In addition to a direct homage to North by Northwest, the movie intercuts a professor’s lecture on troubled Balkan history with chase scenes. Things are gentler in the other previewable films, although the war does provide the backdrop for The Red Colored Gray Truck (at 8 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 22), a blackly comic (of course) road movie about a pregnant rock singer and a colorblind truck fetishist who find each other while fleeing Belgrade for Italy. The only Montenegrin film in the selection—and the only one made in years—is Packing the Monkeys, Again (pictured; at 6 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 22), a flashy, moderately surrealistic domestic satire about a bickering young couple who get overly involved with the neighbors. Also included are two slacker comedies, Thunderbirds (at 4 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 23), which charts one night of love, drugs, goth-rock, and drum ’n’ bass, and When I Grow up, I’ll be a Kangaroo (at 6 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 23), which takes its inspiration from soccer. The series runs through Sunday, Oct. 23 (see Showtimes for a weekly schedule), at the Avalon Theater, 5612 Connecticut Ave. NW. $9.50. (202) 966-6000. For more information visit www.theavalon.org. (Mark Jenkins)