We know D.C. Get our free newsletter to stay in the know.

Success! You're on the list.

In Latin America, teen horror flicks aren’t set on deserted back roads but on teeming downtown streets. That’s because they’re derived not from campfire bogeyman stories but from real life in some of the world’s poorest, most dangerous cities. De la Calle (Streetwise) takes place in Mexico City, where 15-year-old protagonist Rufino struggles to help even younger homeless kids and elude the grasp of the corrupt, drug-dealing cop who’s his adoptive mother’s lover. On the verge of escaping with his girlfriend, Rufino unexpectedly learns that his biological father is alive, and makes the risky decision to stay in the city to find him. Although it’s derived from a play, Gerardo Tort’s first feature forsakes any staginess, striding into the street and shooting with documentary-style handheld camera and natural light. Like such harrowing precursors as Pixote, De la Calle is a dispatch from Latin America’s war on its throwaway children. It screens at 8 p.m. at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden’s Ring Auditorium, 7th and Independence Avenue SW. Free. (202) 357-3091. (Mark Jenkins)