Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
May 22, 2015

Posts by Jason Dick

449 Posts

May 20, 2015

AFI Docs Highlights Old School, New School

AFI Docs released its full slate Wednesday for its June 17-21 run, and among its 81 movies are documentaries from one of the field’s most influential directors, as well as some of its most contemporary trailblazers.

Legendary documentarian Albert Maysles, who died in March at the age of 88, is one of several co-directors of “In Transit.” The movie, which premiered last month at the Tribeca Film Festival, is a chronicle of Amtrak’s Empire Builder train line, which stretches from Seattle to Chicago.

Meanwhile, Alex Gibney, the man who took on Scientology with this year’s “Going Clear: Scientology, Hollywood, & the Prison of His Belief” and has taken a deep look at everyone from Ken Lay (“Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room”) to Hunter S. Thompson (“Gonzo: The Life and Work of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson”) and Julian Assange (“We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks”) takes a look at the man behind Apple with his latest, “Steve Jobs: Man in the Machine.”

Another documentarian pushing boundaries in the field, Joshua Oppenheimer, will have his “The Look of Silence,” a follow-up to his hard-hitting film about the Indonesian genocide, at the festival as well.

The three directors show off an old school/new school dynamic to the festival, with 78 other films in between.

One of the travelers in “In Transit” says, “Maybe I don’t wanna die before having a good look at the world.” That’s a good fit for a thing such as AFI Docs, where such sentiment largely defines the audiences for documentaries.

Related:

AFI Docs to Open With Flick About Epic Gore Vidal-William F. Buckley Brawls

The 114th: CQ Roll Call’s Guide to the New Congress

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By Jason Dick Posted at 4:30 p.m.
Movies

May 19, 2015

DC Film Society Trailer Night Parks It at E Street

The Washington DC Film Society is hosting its “Coming Attractions” program Tuesday night at Landmark’s E Street Cinema, its twice-yearly gathering of those looking to watch and gab about the season’s top movie offerings.

From 7 to 9 p.m., host Tim Gordon will take viewers through the trailers for the summer’s big flicks. The admission ticket includes door prizes that include movie promotional items, posters and DVDs.

It’s five bucks to get in. The bar at E Street can make things even more fun. Just think of Drafthouse Film’s “Trailer Wars” and the old “42nd Street Forever” efforts.

The 114th: CQ Roll Call’s Guide to the New Congress

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By Jason Dick Posted at 4:12 p.m.
Movies

May 18, 2015

GI Film Festival Comes to Canadian Soil

The 2015 GI Film Festival gets underway Monday, and while the bulk of the films and events surrounding the all-things-military fest are at the Angelika Film Center at Mosaic in Fairfax, Va., the international bloc gets the (maple leaf) red carpet treatment on Tuesday at the Canadian Embassy. Full story

By Jason Dick Posted at 4:15 p.m.
Movies

May 16, 2015

D.C. Outdoor Movie Season Kicks Off

The D.C. outdoor movie season kicks off in the middle of the city on May 22, when the Golden Cinema series starts up with its inaugural flick, “Empire Records.”

The 1995 classic of the too-slim slacker genre follows the staff of an independent record store as it tries to fend off a chain moving in on its turf. How things come full circle, no? The chain record behemoths such as Tower Records are now dead and gone, while indie vinyl specialty shops (such as D.C.’s own Crooked Beat, Red Onion, Som and Hill & Dale) are enjoying a revival. Full story

May 14, 2015

‘The Birds’ Descends on Congressional Cemetery

If you have orinthophobia, perhaps the only thing more terrifying than the thought of a bird attack is watching birds attack Tippi Hedren among thousands and thousands of dead people. Congressional Cemetery is happy to oblige. Full story

By Jason Dick Posted at 12:41 p.m.
Movies

May 13, 2015

AFI Docs to Open With Flick About Epic Gore Vidal-William F. Buckley Brawls

People think cable television pundits are rough on each other now. They don’t know for rough.

“Best of Enemies,” a documentary by Robert Gordon and Morgan Neville about the 1968 public debates between Gore Vidal and William F. Buckley will open the AFI Docs film festival on June 17. Vidal, the pugilistic liberal, writer and cultural critic and Buckley, the pugnacious founder of National Review and conservative godfather, staged the intellectual equivalent of the Ali-Frazier fights.

“As far as I’m concerned, the only sort of pro- or crypto-Nazi I can think of is yourself, ” Vidal said to Buckley on air on Aug. 28, 1968, during the Democratic National Convention in Chicago.

“Stop calling me a crypto-Nazi. Stop or I’ll sock you in the goddamned face and you’ll stay plastered,” Buckley replied.

“They were not frenemies. They were just enemies,” Neville told Beyond Cinema at this year’s Sundance Film Festival. Anyone interested in some real intellectual firepower should be in for a good movie.

The 114th: CQ Roll Call’s Guide to the New Congress

Get breaking news alerts and more from Roll Call in your inbox or on your iPhone.

Alex Garland and the ‘Strange’ Fallout From Snowden

Alex Garland’s film “Ex Machina” arrived in U.S. theaters at a time of heightened cultural awareness of artificial intelligence. But a key plot point centers on another current issue of resonance: the bulk collection of telephone records. Full story

By Jason Dick Posted at 12:52 p.m.
Movies

May 11, 2015

There Be Dragons — and Horses

Take in a Black Eyed Susan on Preakness Day! (Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Take in a Black Eyed Susan on Preakness Day! (Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Start off the week with a rock-star historian and end it with the spectacle of dragons gliding down the Potomac River. In between, mix with a little splash of ginger and take in the second leg of the Triple Crown. Full story

May 5, 2015

At Tortilla Coast, Strasburg or Strasburger?

High cinco! (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

High cinco! (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

What’s more American than margaritas on Cinco de Mayo? How about a margarita on Cinco de Mayo at the capital of political Tex-Mex pubs, Tortilla Coast?

The Capitol Hill watering hole, renowned as the former employer of GOP stars like Rep. Paul D. Ryan, R-Wis., and the secret meeting place of Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, and his followers, is ramping up for a two-fer: The busiest day of the year for them (Cinco de Mayo) and a Washington Nationals home game, where the Nats will take on the loathed Marlins of Miami. Full story

April 30, 2015

Getting the Run of the Place at Congressional Cemetery

Historic Congressional Cemetery's annual Day of the Dog features beer, dogs and even a foot race for humans. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Historic Congressional Cemetery’s annual Day of the Dog features beer, dogs, and even a footrace for humans. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Where Roll Call Dares Logo(Thumbnail)Even the dead need a cold beer now and then. Hence the “City of Silence” coozies Historic Congressional Cemetery sells for five bucks a pop.

On Saturday, those resting in peace at the cemetery on the edge of Capitol Hill will be able to kick back with a temperature-protected brew as their two- and four-legged neighbors gather for the latest Day of the Dog. Food trucks, two local breweries — Atlas and Port City — and local pet vendors and services will be on paw for the celebration of all things canine. Full story

April 27, 2015

Senate Leaders Are Sports Throwbacks

Columnist George Will, left, Reid and Bryce Harper, right, hang out at Nationals Park. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Columnist George Will, left, Reid and Bryce Harper hang out at Nationals Park. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

A couple of generations ago, America’s top sports were baseball, horse racing and boxing. Times change, but the Senate’s top two leaders love to kick it old school.

Look no further than the upcoming Friday, when the chamber won’t be in session, providing valuable travel and hang-out time in Kentucky and Nevada for two marquee events. Full story

April 22, 2015

Baseball Polling, in Black and White

Is baseball still a "national" pastime? (Jason Dick/CQ Roll Call)

Is baseball still a “national” pastime? (Jason Dick/CQ Roll Call)

Roughly one-third of Americans surveyed in a HBO Real Sports/Marist Poll released recently think the decline in African-American participation in baseball is reason for concern.

Interesting news in light of Clinton Yates’ recent story in The Washington Post about how the Washington Nationals have demoted Chuck Brown’s “Busting Loose” from the rotation when a Nats hits a home run at Nationals Park. The go-go anthem is an icon for people from the Washington area, particularly African Americans. Full story

Guest-List App IDs D.C.’s A-List Venues

D.C. loves itself a party. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

D.C. loves itself a party. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Of course there’s an app for checking in to a guest list, and for those heading to the MSNBC after party on Saturday after the White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner, you’ll be checked in using zkipster.

Now that we’re on the countdown to Saturday’s goat rodeo, zkipster released a list of what it considers the top venues in D.C. to “witness political and social power.” Drumroll, please. Full story

April 21, 2015

Tim Ryan Goes ‘Planetary’ (Video)

One of Congress’ foremost messengers on mindfulness is set to lend his voice to an Earth Day after-movie discussion of “Planetary” Wednesday night at the AFI Silver Theater in Silver Spring, Md.

Rep. Tim Ryan, D-Ohio, will take a seat alongside National Geographic Society President Gary Knell and Lou Leonard, vice president of the World Wildlife Fund’s climate change program after the screening of the 85-minute documentary about life on Earth. Full story

April 20, 2015

What About #ThatTown?

How about al fresco truck dining? (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

How about al fresco truck dining? (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

This is the week #ThisTown lives for, the White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner and its multiple party-time events. But what about #ThatTown, the folks who won’t be picking up the tux or cocktail dress from the cleaners?

If you’d prefer to eat your food standing up, listening to music outdoors or watching some hoops, you’re in luck.

Full story

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