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The 12th annual edition of this fest opens with Painted Desert (pictured), a Japanese-American co-production about an American gangster and a Japanese drifter who both converge on a desert diner run by a Japanese-American woman (Oct. 8, Jenifer Theater, 7 p.m.), before voyaging to China, India, the Philippines, Indonesia, Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, and destinations closer at hand. None of the entries was available for preview, but based on the descriptions, the more promising ones would seem to include Bayani, an account of Filipino revolutionary hero Andres Bonifacio (Oct. 11, Biograph, 7 p.m.); Hill of No Return, a drama of Taiwanese resistance to Japanese occupation (Oct. 12, Biograph, 7 p.m.); Ticket, a controversial Korean portrayal of prostitution (Oct. 12, Biograph, 10 p.m.); The Women From the Lake of Scented Souls, a Golden Bear-winning tale of enduring Chinese feudal values (Oct. 13, Biograph, 7 p.m.); The Master Carpenter, an ancient Indian story of forbidden love (Oct. 14, Biograph, 7 p.m.); and Because You Are a Woman, an account of a rape victim’s battle against the Korean judicial system. The Biograph is at 2819 M St. NW, the Jenifer at 5252 Wisconsin Ave. NW. Screenings are $6. For more information call (202) 828-1955. (Mark Jenkins)