- The Washington Times - Wednesday, March 21, 2007

No doubt about it, you must see Doubt at the National Theatre before it closes on Sunday. John Patrick Shanley’s Pulitzer Prize-winning drama, deft and incisive, keeps audiences leaning forward to watch the magnificent Cherry Jones in horn-rimmed glasses, a billowy nun’s habit and a stiff black bonnet clamped on her head like a helmet. She is Sister Aloysius, a 60-ish Catholic school principal circa 1964 who pursues and corners a magnetic but manipulative parish priest whom she suspects is sexually abusing one of the male students. Frail of body but sharp as a dart, she is tenacious, ruthless and terrifying. And she must be seen. At the National Theatre, 13th and E streets Northwest. 8 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays, 2 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays, 7:30 p.m. Sundays. Through Sunday. Tickets are $38.75 to $78.75. 800/447-7400

— Jayne Blanchard

The art-house distributor Rialto Pictures has revived an Italian movie of 1962, Mafioso, which figured in a wave of imports of that time that were rediscovering Sicily in one format or another. Though it falls well short of such classic examples as “Divorce, Italian Style,” “The Leopard,” “The Bandits of Orgosolo” and “Salvatore Giuliano,” there are durably amusing elements of social comedy in “Mafioso,” directed by Alberto Lattuada. The scenario contrives to entrap Alberto Sordi, a Sicilian native who has prospered in Milan, when he returns home for a vacation and discovers that his deference for the local godfather can transform a holiday into a nightmare. The Landmark E Street Cinema hosts the Washington engagement.

— Gary Arnold


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