The endlessly inventive, brilliantly insightful, reliably somber but sometimes (trust me!) surprisingly lighthearted Ingmar Bergman is the subject of a 13-film, 13-week retrospective beginning tomorrow at the Charles Theatre, 1711 N. Charles St. The series kicks off with 1952's Secrets of Women (Kvinnors vantan), the story of four women, all sisters-in-law, telling each other stories of their often-strained marriages. Among the couples are Eva Dahlbeck and Gunnar Bjornstrand, who would go on to star in Bergman's 1955 Smiles of a Summer Night. Showtimes for Secrets of Women are noon tomorrow, 7 p.m. Monday and 9 p.m. Thursday; tickets are $6 Saturday, $8 other times. Information: 410- 727-3456 or thecharles.com.
Urban film series
The Next Generation Awareness Foundation's fourth annual Film & Discussion Series in honor of Black History Month begins Wednesday in Washington. The five-day event has as its theme "We Remember," recalling the early days of the civil rights struggle and some pioneering black artists. "The Prelude" features several short and feature films, including Veronique N. Doumbe's Denis A. Charles: An Interrupted Conversation, featuring the great jazz drummer, and Carvin Eison's July '64, a documentary on the Rochester, N.Y., race riots that broke out that month. Wednesday's program runs from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. at Landmark's E Street Cinema, 555 11th St. N.W. Thursday, the series shifts to the Bohemian Caverns, 2001 11th St. N.W., for "Jazz, Poetry, Mingling and Film" (6 p.m. to 11 p.m.), with visits from musicians and slam poets. Friday, "Self Power and Creativity" (5:30 p.m. to 11 p.m.) at the Regal Cinema Gallery Place, 707 Seventh St. N.W., includes a visit from pioneering blaxploitation filmmaker Melvin Van Peebles, on hand for the 7 p.m. area premiere of a documentary about him, How to Eat Your Watermelon In White Company (and Enjoy It). Saturday, also at Gallery Place, "Listen Up" (noon to 8 p.m.) includes presentation of the NGAF's Spiritual Legacy Award to actor-singer Yvette Freeman. Sunday, the series closes with a 7:30 p.m. presentation of August Wilson's Gem of the Ocean at Arena Stage, 1101 Sixth St. S.W. Full schedule and ticket information: urban filmseries.com or 202-409-7240.
Battle of the Films
Movie fans will have the chance to see and judge the work of Baltimore-area filmmakers at the Battle of the Films. Round 1 is slated for Thursday night at the weekly meeting of the Cinema Lounge at Gardel's Supper Club, 29 S. Front St. The previously submitted short films will be screened, and five winners will be chosen based on audience reaction. The films may encompass a variety of styles, including narrative, documentary, experimental, animation or any combination. The winning filmmakers will then compete in Round 2, slated for Feb. 15, during which each will show a second work. Cash prizes will be awarded for first, second and third place. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Admission: $5. Information: gardels.com.
Independent filmmakers wondering about the legal questions surrounding their work - What's in the public domain? When do you need permission to film someone or something? Is copyrighting necessary? - might want to check out the "Legal Issues for Indie Filmmakers Workshop" from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. tomorrow at the Creative Alliance, 3134 Eastern Ave. The workshop is sponsored by Maryland Lawyers for the Arts. Registration is $20, $15 for CA members. Information: 410-276-1651 or creativealliance.org.
Filmmaker at MICA
Sedat Pakay, whose documentary films have included James Baldwin: From Another Place (1973), Walker Evans: America (2000) and Josef and Anni Albers: Art Is Everywhere (2005), will discuss his work Monday at the Maryland Institute College of Art's Brown Center, 1301 Mount Royal Ave. The Turkish-born Pakay studied under Evans, Paul Rand and Herbert Matter; his photographs have been exhibited at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington and the Museum of Modern Art and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. The free lecture, part of MICA's "Artists on Monday" series, will begin at noon. Information: 410-225- 2300 or mica.edu.
That's the ticket
Diana Sowle, who played Mrs. Bucket in 1972's Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, will draw the winning ticket for the Golden Ticket grand prize Thursday at the 16th annual Chocolate Affair, an event to raise money for Baltimore's Health Care for the Homeless. Co-chairs of this year's affair are mystery writer (and Sun alumna) Laura Lippman and Senator Theatre owner Tom Kiefaber. The event is slated to begin at 6 p.m. at Ravens Stadium. Tickets are $65 per person, $120 per couple in advance, $70/$150 at the door or $150 for "Chocolate Angels" tickets. Information: 443-703- 1336 or hchmd.org.