- The Washington Times - Wednesday, February 21, 2007

The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden presents light in all its grandeur and mystery with Refract, Reflect, Project: Light Works from the Collection through April 8. Light, of course, has been essential to art from time immemorial, but since the late 1950s artists have investigated light through kinetic art, sculpture, environment, photography and experimental film. Included in the show are works by James Turrell, Dan Flavin and Spencer Finch. At the Hirshhorn, Independence Avenue at Seventh Street SW. 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. daily. Free. 202/633-1000 or hirshhorn.si.edu.

— Joanna Shaw-Eagle

Two new movies offer intriguing portraits of the confidence games practiced within the national security bureaucracies of two very different cultures in recent decades. The factually based Breach, directed by Billy Ray, who made an impressive debut in 2003 with “Shattered Glass,” recalls the FBI effort to confirm suspicions about a veteran agent named Robert Hanssen, identified as a Soviet agent by defectors. Chris Cooper portrays Hanssen and Ryan Philippe the young agent assigned to shadow him.

In The Lives of Others, an acclaimed German import that will compete for the next Oscar as best foreign language film, the twilight of the East German secret police agency, Stasi, is examined through the character of an officer called Gerd Wiesler (Ulrich Muhe), assigned to investigate a dissident writer and his actress wife. In this instance the loyal insider begins to sympathize with the suspected disloyal outsiders. Mr. Muhe and director Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck won two of the seven awards presented to the movie by the German film academy. It opens tomorrow at selected theaters in the Washington area.

— Gary Arnold


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