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THURSDAY

As Cuban communism tentatively loosens its grasp, Bernie Ijdis’s 1998 documentary looks back at the days when Havana was wide open. In the ’50s, such American mobsters as Meyer Lansky, Lucky Luciano, and Santo Traficante operated with impunity at the Riviera Hotel and on the casino-heavy nearby boulevard known as the Malec¢n, where Hollywood types exhibited their wealth and glamour. The film calls on the reminiscences of players both big and bit, which turn out to be vivid and evocative. Ultimately, however, Ijdis’s real subject is revealed to be not the end of that era in Cuban history but the imminent conclusion of the contemporary one. This screening complements the museum’s current retrospective of work by Cuban artist Carlos Alfonzo. At 8 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 20, at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden’s Ring Auditorium, 7th & Independence Ave. SW. Free. (202) 357-2700. (Mark Jenkins)