Top Five Smaller Film Festivals

Michael Moore, with a wax sculpture of George Bush.Photo: Robin Holland

The Next Generation of Film: Politics
From September 10 to September 12, spanning the anniversary of September 11, the Film Society of Lincoln Center will ask filmmakers to discuss the increasing relevance of film in the Iraq War era. In addition to screenings of historic films like The Battle of Algiers, there will be a crew of documentarians on hand, including Peter Davis and provocateur-of-the-hour Michael Moore, who will discuss the Fahrenheit fallout on September 12. 9/10-9/12; $9; 65 W. 65th St., plaza level.

Animation Block Party
On September 9, this rooftop festival rounds up shorts from talents like Bill Plympton, Jeff Scher, Emily Hubley, Matt Sheridan, and Tak Hoon Kim. The animators of Hedwig, Beavis and Butt-head, and Celebrity Deathmatch may not be household names, but the sponsors offering free beer and doughnuts—Pabst Blue Ribbon and Krispy Kreme—at the after-party certainly are. Through 9/16; $10; BAM Rose Cinemas, 30 Lafayette Ave., Brooklyn

The New Fest @ BAM
Don’t like wading through the dreck at small festivals? The Brooklyn Academy of Music reprises only the finest films from this June’s queer-cinema festival—including Dykes With Tykes, about lesbian mothers, and the romantic comedy Slutty Summer. 9/9; $5; OfficeOps, 57 Thames St., East Williamsburg, Brooklyn

Cairo Tales
Through September 16, the Film Society’s series explores recent Arab cinema through thirteen films and pays tribute to one of its greats—Egyptian filmmaker Salah Abou Seif—in six others, including his once-banned 1968 satire The Trial 68. 9/10-9/12; $9; 65 W. 65th St., plaza level.

Cinema East
ArteEast and NYU’s Department of Middle Eastern Studies kick off the second year of the quickly expanding annual film series with the collaborative documentary About Baghdad. Other highlights include The Lizard, an Iranian box-office hit that tracks an escaped crook who disguises himself as a mullah (hey, wait, is this a remake of Sister Act?). September 11 to December 4. 9/11-12/4; $9; Cantor Film Center, NYU, 36 E. 8th St.

Top Five Smaller Film Festivals