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16

FRIDAY

Iconoclast Robert Altman, who had toiled steadily but haplessly through the Reagan-Bush years, needed a hit. 1992’s The Player took a scathingly cynical, sometimes funny, look at Hollywood studio culture—and garnered Altman his first Oscar nomination since 1975’s Nashville, renewed his funding, and kicked off a successful run of pictures (including two more Oscar nominees, 1993’s Short Cuts and last year’s Gosford Park). So what if Altman’s poison-pen satire (though he has claimed that the reality is much worse than his picture describes) had no effect on the subject of its scorn? Aren’t they still trying to cast Julia and Bruce in everything? Can The Graduate Part 2 be far away? The movie screens at 7 p.m. at the Library of Congress’ Pickford Theater, 101 Independence Ave. SE. Free. (202) 707-5677. (Todd Hitchcock)