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THROUGH DECEMBER 29

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Jeanine Basinger’s A Woman’s View: How Hollywood Spoke to Women 1930-1960 is an astute exploration of the “women’s film” during the 30 years that comprised the genre’s heyday. Catering to a female audience, most of these films sanctioned the status quo—namely “men, marriage, and motherhood”—while they offered up glamorous or just scandalous alternatives to it. “Everything it endorses, it also undermines,” writes Basinger of the genre. Her book also tackles such intriguing subtopics as the Fashion Problem—the cinematic significance accorded clothes and the ability to dress oneself. A Wesleyan University film studies professor and American Film Institute trustee, Basinger selected this AFI series, which includes perennials like A Star Is Born (Dec. 27 at 7:45 p.m.; Dec. 28 at 8:15 p.m.), Cover Girl (Dec. 22 at 8 p.m.; Dec. 23 at 6 & 10 p.m.), and Leave Her to Heaven (pictured, Dec. 7 at 8:30 p.m.—“One of the greatest of all women’s films,” she asserts). At the Kennedy Center’s American Film Institute Theater. $6. (202) 785-4600. (Nicole Arthur)