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Movies: A '22 MDFilmFest preview; HBO's "We Own This City" launch

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Jon Bernthal (right) portrays Sgt. Wayne Jenkins in HBO Max's "We Own This City," a new 6-part drama premiering Monday that's based on Justin Fenton's best-selling book about the Baltimore Police Department's infamous Gun Trace Task Force scandal. (photo credit HBO Films)

It's Midday at the Movies, our monthly look at films and filmmaking. Tom is joined again today by two of our favorite movie mavens: Ann Hornaday is film critic for the Washington Post and author of Talking Pictures: How to Watch Movies, now available in paperback; she joins us on our digital line.

And joining us on Zoom is Jed Dietz, the founder and retired director of the Maryland Film Festival, which is about to begin its first IN-PERSON festival since 2019.

On today's program, we're also joined by the MD Film Festival's Artistic Director Christy LeMaster, who helps us spotlight some of the many short films, docs and features being showcased this year. The Festival opens on April 27 and runs through May 1 at the Parkway.

Check out the Festival schedule here.

Among the films highlighted today is HBO Max's new limited series, We Own This City, a 6-part dramatization of investigative reporter Justin Fenton's best-selling book about the Baltimore Police Department's infamous Gun Trace Task Force scandal. A special Festival screening of the film on Thursday at 7pm will be followed by a community panel discussion, including executive producers and writers George Pelecanos and David Simon (The Wire), writer D Watkins, and reporter Justin Fenton, author of the book We Own This City.

We get a sneak preview of Episode One of host and series co-writer D Watkins' official We Own This City Podcast, (which drops Monday), in which he interviews actor Jon Bernthal, the actor who portrays GTTF's Sgt Wayne Jenkins in the HBO Max series.

We also discuss Navalny, the new documentary by director Daniel Roher about jailed Russian dissident and Vladimir Putin rival Alexei Navalny. The doc is being screened at MFF at 9:30 Thursday night.

Host, Midday (M-F 12:00-1:00)
Malarie is Midday's Supervisory Producer.
Rob is Midday's senior producer.