It's a good weekend for Japanese movies

Local Screenings

The Buzz


Japanese director Yasujiro Ozu's 1959 Floating Weeds (Ukigusa) will be the subject of this weekend's Filmtalk at the Enoch Pratt Free Library, 400 Cathedral St. Ganjiro Nakamura stars as the aged head of a traveling performing troupe who uses its visit to a seaside village to try to rekindle an old flame, with unwelcome results. Showtime is 10 a.m. tomorrow in the library's Wheeler Auditorium, with spirited discussion to follow. Admission is free. Information: 410-396-5487 or

More Japanese film

The Charles Theatre's 12-week run of samurai films continues this weekend with Sanjuro (Tsubaki Sanjuro), revered director Akira Kurosawa's 1962 tale of an unconventional samurai (Kurosawa favorite Toshiro Mifune) helping a group of men rid their town of its corrupt leaders. Showtime is noon tomorrow, with encore showings at 7 p.m. Monday and 9 p.m. Thursday. Tickets are $6 tomorrow, $8 other times. The Charles is at 1711 N. Charles St. Information: 410-727-FILM or

The Duke at church

John Wayne's final film, The Shootist, will be shown Wednesday at the parish center of St. Thomas Aquinas Church, West 37th Street and Roland Avenue. Wayne plays an aging, sick gunfighter looking for a quiet place to die. The 1976 film, directed by Don Siegel, also stars Jimmy Stewart, Ron Howard and Lauren Bacall. Showtime is 7 p.m. Admission is free, although donations are appreciated. Information: 410-366-4488.

`Jaws' returns

It may sound hard to believe, but until 1975, few members of the general public speculated about a film's box-office performance. Then came Steven Spielberg's Jaws, the story of three men, one humongous shark and the duel to the death between them. The film opened huge, bringing in more money more quickly than any studio had ever dreamed possible, and the summer blockbuster - not to mention our box-office obsession - was born. But don't hold that against it. Jaws is one terrific movie, from its ominous John Williams score to the hammy performance by Robert Shaw as shark killer Quint to the mechanical shark itself - whose refusal to work may have been the biggest break Spielberg had. The young filmmaker was forced to shoot around it, turning the big lug into one of filmdom's most fearsome unseen presences. A rare opportunity to see the film in all its big-screen glory begins today and runs through Thursday at the American Film Institute's Silver Theatre, 8633 Colesville Road, in Silver Spring. Showtimes today are 7 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. For more showtimes and ticket information: 301-495-6700 or

Little Italy Open-Air

The annual Little Italy Open-Air Film Festival continues tonight with Herbert Ross' My Blue Heaven. The 1990 comedy stars Steve Martin as a mobster in the witness protection program under the guard of an FBI agent played by Rick Moranis. Joan Cusack, Melanie Mayron and William Hickey also star. The festivities, including live music, begin at 7 p.m. at the corner of High and Stiles streets. It's free, but go early and take a chair. Information:

Outdoors at Hopkins

Steve Box and Nick Park's Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit, winner of the Oscar as the best animated feature of 2005, will be shown tonight on the campus of the Johns Hopkins University as part of the school's Summer Outdoor Film Series. The campus is at 3400 N. Charles St., with screenings on the Upper Quad outside Gilman Hall. The series includes live music, which begins at 7:30 p.m., with the movie beginning just after sunset. Future films in the series include The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (July 21) and The Wizard of Oz (July 28). Admission is free; refreshments are available. Information:

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