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To Aug. 27
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Technically, cinema is just a trick of light, but it can seem intensely corporeal. That’s why the Mary Pickford Theater’s programmers have decided to get physical with a program that could only come from the Library of Congress’ diverse holdings. The series opens with the film that provides its title: The Body (at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 17) is a 1970 British documentary that’s probably best known for its Roger Waters and Ron Geesin score. The semi-Floydian soundtrack (which includes rude body noises) is keyed to such moments as a pan across a lineup of people arranged from newborn to elderly and a table set with the exact quantity of chemicals that compose a human being. Also included is 1973 docudrama The Naked Ape (pictured, at 7 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 26), adapted from anthropologist Desmond Morris’ once-controversial book, and a fictional tour of the human body’s interior, 1966’s Fantastic Voyage (at 7 p.m. Friday, Aug. 20), in which Raquel Welch plays a sexy scientific researcher. Welch’s curvaceous corpus is also displayed in another movie from the same year, One Million Years B.C. (at 7 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 19), in which the actress plays the prehistoric woman who mates with one of the slower-witted Neanderthals, thus enriching the human gene pool enough to someday produce the young women who compete in small-town beauty pageants like the one depicted in 1975’s Smile (at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 24). The series concludes with 1965’s The Raw Ones (at 7 p.m. Friday, Aug. 27), an example of a largely forgotten but once carefully scrutinized genre: the nudist film. The series runs until Friday, Aug. 27, at the Mary Pickford Theater, Jefferson Building, Library of Congress, 101 Independence Ave. SE. Free. (202) 707-5677. (Mark Jenkins)