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Aug. 15-18

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Georgetown doesn’t have a single movie theater at the moment, but it does have an international film festival. In its second year, the Georgetown Independent Film Festival has broadened its reach, thanks in part to its partnership with Circuito Off: The Venice International Short Film Festival. At this writing, the festival’s organizers are still culling the 300-plus entries to about 70 that will be shown. Some of the films accepted by last weekend include The Phone to the Left (pictured), a Danish ‘toon about a cop who always gets stuck breaking the bad news to bereaved relatives; The Worlds of Mei Langfan, a documentary about one of Beijing Opera’s most loved female-role players; and Who Hangs the Laundry?, an Icelandic documentary that neatly capsulizes life in contemporary Beirut in the experiences of one human-rights advocate (and her wash). Gender identity seems to have emerged as a festival theme, with such films as XXXY, a documentary about two “intersex” people who don’t like the medical decisions made about their bodies when they were babies; Taste, an Australian drama about tentative romance between a woman and a former woman; and No Dumb Questions, which considers a man’s sex reassignment via the concerns of his three preteen nieces. Going worldwide has opened the GIFF to material that’s not new to D.C., such as the Irish animated short Give Up Yer Aul Sins, previously seen at Visions. To judge from a dozen of the films, though, globalization has significantly improved the quality of entries. As the fest’s schedule is finalized, it will be posted at www.georgetownfilmfest.com. The fest runs to Sunday, Aug. 18, at the Georgetown Independent Film Festival Theatre, 3 Blues Alley NW. $5 (per block); $10 (all day). (202) 255-1995. (Mark Jenkins)