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Love dirty movies? Look no further than D.C.’s Environmental Film Festival (March 16-28). The fest offers no less than 155 films, several of which are purely about soil (as in Dirt! The Movie) and plenty more are about what’s growing in it. Now in its 18th year, the festival offers over 150 films at venues throughout the city, and an ample majority of the films are offered completely free of charge. As with any agenda-pushing event, the aesthetic quality may vary, but for the most part, the subjects are consistently interesting and socially relevant. The main focus this time around is the relationship between what we eat and where it comes from. Homegrown follows the Dervaes family as they go through the unique rigors of cultivating an organic farm in the middle of Pasadena, CA—managing to carve out a modest living on less than a quarter of an urban acre. Who Killed Crassostrea Virginica: The Fall and Rise of Chesapeake Bay Oysters touches closer to home, exploring issues that lead to the decline of the Chesapeake Bay oyster industry. Filmmaker Michael Fincham struggles to find the real culprit in this picture, and he’ll be hosting a discussion after the screening. Other stories at the fest run the gamut from the journey of a self-taught topiary master in A Man Named Pearl, to the flight of an urban hawk in The Legend of Pale Male.
Dirt! The Movie screens at 12:30 p.m. at The Museum of Natural History on March 20. A Man Named Pearl screens at 7:00 p.m. at the National Arboretum on March 22. The Legend of Pale Male screens at 12:00 p.m. at The Museum of Natural History on March 27. Homegrown screens at 12:00 p.m. at The Museum of Natural History on March 21. Who Killed Crassostrea Virginica: The Fall and Rise of Chesapeake Bay Oysters screens at 1:30 p.m. at the Carnegie Institute for Science on March 21.