There’s still time to nominate local icons for Best of D.C.
As long as the current political atmosphere reigns, the world’s filmmakers will have plenty of globalization, privatization, and every other type of workers’-rights-threatening-ization to focus their cameras on. Perhaps that’s why the second annual D.C. Labor FilmFest includes a whopping 15 films—that’s more than twice the “Unite!” and double the struggle of last year’s inaugural effort. This year’s festival opens with the U.S. premiere of Marie France Collard’s documentary Working Women of the World (at noon Thursday, Sept. 12), which follows the exploitation of employees at Levi’s factories in Indonesia and Turkey. Also screening is a double feature (at 1 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 14) of Vivian Price’s Hammering It Out and Made in Thailand (pictured), Eve-Laure Moros and Linzy Emery’s exploration of female factory workers’ efforts to organize. In addition to an abundance of contemporary documentaries (and postshow discussions), this year’s festival also includes classic labor dramas such as Mike Nichols’ 1983 Silkwood (at 8 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 14) and Herbert Biberman’s 1954 Salt of the Earth (at 5:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 14)—a film that was originally banned by the U.S. government. But for all the D.C. Labor FilmFest’s accomplished entries, the most anticipated event may be the AFI’s screening of Jonathan Parker’s quirky office drama Bartleby (at 1 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 15). Parker’s adaptation of Herman Melville’s short story “Barlteby the Scrivener” stars the, uh, enigmatic Crispin Glover as a disgruntled city-records file clerk who combats the meaninglessness of work by repeatedly announcing, “I would prefer not to.” Clock out of your 9-to-5 life until Tuesday, Sept. 17; see Showtimes for details. (Matthew Borlik)