OCT. 11–16

It could just be the faux Italian heritage I claim on a regular basis to woo the womenfolk and add credibility to my pasta-making prowess speaking, but seriously: When a country is shaped like a boot, you know it’s got to kick ass. And right from the get-go, this fourth go-round of the fest in D.C.—which features more than 30 contemporary and classic films—wants you to know that the people back in the old country do pretty much everything with more style than we do here. (Roberto Faenza’s Come Into the Light, at 9 p.m. Friday, Oct. 14, is pictured.) Marriage? Forget about it: While we’re scratching our heads at the local Blockbuster trying to decide between The Wedding Planner and Father of the Bride, they’re offering Vittorio De Sica’s 1964 romantic satire Marriage, Italian Style (at 1 p.m. Friday, Oct. 14.)—featuring Sophia Loren, Sophia Loren’s breasts, and Sophia Loren’s highly revealing wardrobe. (Tough luck, J.Lo.) Of course, what’s an American marriage without a painfully drawn-out trip to divorce court? Somehow, that doesn’t quite match the entertainment value of Pietro Germi’s 1962 domestic comedy, Divorce, Italian Style (at 12:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 11)—which stars Marcello Mastroianni as an unhappily married ladies’ man who, unable to obtain a legal divorce, hatches a plan to get someone to sleep with his homely wife so that he can kill her in a slap-on-the-wrist-sentence-carrying “crime of passion.” Also included in this year’s festival is Martin Scorsese’s 2001 documentary on Italian cinema, My Voyage to Italy (at 11 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 15), and Forever Blues (at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 11)—actor-turned-director Franco Nero’s coming-of-age drama about an autistic boy whose friendship with an elderly blues musician gives him a new outlook on life. That’s right, an Italian movie about the blues, one of the few uniquely American art forms. And what have we got to show for ourselves? Dan Aykroyd. The series opens Tuesday, Oct. 11, and runs through Sunday, Oct. 16, at Loews Cineplex Georgetown, 3111 K Street NW. Free. For more information call (202) 237-2080, visit washingtonitalia.com, or see Showtimes for a weekly schedule. (Matthew Borlik)