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T H U R S D A Y

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Sátántangó, Hungarian director Béla Tarr’s minimalist epic, is as stark and low-key as life at the small post-Communist farming collective it depicts. Surveying the ambitions of a small group of people who seek a better life but whose efforts only make things worse, Tarr plays with the conventions of cinematic verisimilitude, often providing near-black compositions that provide almost no visual information while hyperrealistically heightening the impact of the everyday sounds that crowd the soundtrack. This black comedy’s worldview is as harsh as the black-and-white cinematography, and as leisurely as the long takes that establish the cast of characters and the bleak, muddy world they inhabit. The film runs about seven hours, and will be shown in four parts—today, March 17, March 23, and March 24—at 8 p.m. at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden’s Ring Auditorium, 7th & Independence Ave. SW. FREE. (202) 357-2700. (MJ)