BEST OF THIS WEEK

THE BALTIMORE SUN

DVD

101 DALMATIANS / / Walt Disney Home Video. $29.99.

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The cleverest of Disney's cartoon features returns to DVD on Tuesday after a 10-year absence in a two-disc special edition. It gets you smiling with the spot-marked opening credits -- and your grin never droops until "The End." In this parody-charged homage to English crime movies, the title dogs are victims and heroes in a canine self-help network that stretches from London to the far corners of the countryside. Almost all the dogs are more worldly, can-do creatures than the ineffectual lead humans. They're able to take the initiative when the flabbergastingly evil Cruella De Vil rounds up Dalmatian puppies in an attempt to manufacture dog-skin coats. The device the dogs use to summon help -- the Twilight Bark -- is a wonderful stroke, the canine equivalent of the message-by-arrow delivery service in Disney's live-action Story of Robin Hood. From the moment they sound that bark, the film becomes a succession of furry delights.

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[MICHAEL SRAGOW]

TELEVISION

DIRT / / 10 tonight. FX

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Courteney Cox is back spilling Dirt as Lucy Spiller, the unrelenting editor-in-chief of a Los Angeles celebrity tabloid named Dirt Now, as this FX drama begins its second season of guilty pleasures. Picking up where it left off, Dirt finds Lucy bleeding and unconscious after an attack by actress Julia Mallory (Laura Allen), whose career was destroyed by the magazine. Primo paparazzo Don Konkey (Ian Hart) struggles to overcome his schizophrenia through medication as he reels from news of best friend Lucy's assault.

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[ASSOCIATED PRESS]

MUSIC

CELTIC WOMAN / / 8 p.m. Saturday, March 8. 1st Mariner Arena, 201 W. Baltimore St. $30-$65. 410-547-7328 or ticketmaster.com.

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An all-female vocal ensemble whose music is often compared to the likes of Enya and Loreena McKennitt, Celtic Woman is also known for its lively, theatrical stage show. The songs -- as heard on the group's latest album, A New Journey -- are traditionally Celtic and are imbued with contemporary touches. The sentiments are grand, buttressed by whimsical melodies.

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[RASHOD D. OLLISON]

CLASSICAL

PIANO DUO / / Stephanie Ho and Saar Ahuvia, 3 p.m. today. Towson Unitarian Universalist Church, 1710 Dulaney Valley Road. $5-$20 at the door. 410-813-4255 or migh.org.

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Music in the Great Hall, a concert series that can be counted on to offer interesting programs and engaging artists, presents pianists Saar Ahuvia and Stephanie Ho this afternoon. These Peabody Conservatory grads, who studied with Leon Fleisher, have been steadily building a career in the less-traveled field of two-piano music (later this month, they'll compete in the Dranoff International Two Piano Competition in Miami, one of best events of its kind).

Today's program includes colorful and virtuosic music written or arranged for double-keyboard by John Adams, Claude Debussy, Max Reger and George Gershwin.

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[TIM SMITH]

ART

AMERICAN REVOLUTION / / 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday, Wednesday and weekends; 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Thursday. Corcoran Gallery of Art, 500 17th Street NW, Washington. $12 adults, $10 students. 202-639-1700.

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This big survey of the Corcoran's American art collection presents 200 works in a range of media that chronicle the evolution of five major themes that have shaped American culture: money, land, politics, cultural exchange and the modern world. Works run the gamut from Colonial-era portraits by John Singleton Copley and Gilbert Stuart to 20th-century abstract paintings by Willem de Kooning, Mark Rothko, Ellsworth Kelly and Richard Diebenkorn.

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[GLENN MCNATT]

THEATER

THE NEW YORK CITY BALLET / / 1:30 p.m., 7:30 p.m. today. $29-$99. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, 2700 F St. N.W., Washington. 800-444-1324 or kennedy-center.org.

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The New York's City Ballet's annual visit to the Kennedy Center always is a treat, but you'll have to act quickly if you want to see them in 2008 within easy commuting distance. The ballet troupe co-founded by the legendary choreographer George Balanchine ends its Washington visit today with two programs of diverse repertoire.

At 1:30 p.m., the company will perform its "Balanchine and Robbins" program, featuring the former's Serenade and Symphony in C, along with Moves by the latter.

For the evening show, the troupe will perform "Four Voices." This program includes Balanchine's Agon and The Concert by Robbins, along with two lesser-known works: Carousel (A Dance) by Christopher Wheeldon and Peter Martins' Zakouski -- the Russian word for hors d'oeuvres.

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[MARY CAROLE MCCAULEY]

WASHINGTON

NEW AFRICAN FILM FESTIVAL / / Times Vary. Friday, -March 17. One film is free. The rest are $6.75-$9.75. AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center, 8633 Colesville Road, Silver Spring. 301-495-6700 or afi.com / silver.

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The event features 19 African-themed films by various countries, such as Nigeria, Namibia, Burkina Faso and Guinea. The program includes Ezra, an award-winning film that revolves around a young man who spends 10 years in the jungle as a child soldier after being kidnapped by rebels; Hip Hop Revolution, which studies the evolution of hip-hop in South Africa during the past 25 years; Hollow City, which chronicles the fictional post-war life of an orphan in Angola; and a free showing of Iron Ladies of Liberia, a documentary about several female Liberian officials.

Ousmane Sembene, the deceased Senegalese director whom many call the "Father of African Film," directed almost half of the selections. Daniel Junge, director of Iron Ladies of Liberia, will make an appearance.

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[JENNIFER CHOI]

FILM

THE REVOLUTION WILL NOT BE TELEVISED / / 8 p.m. Thursday. Meyerhoff Auditorium, Baltimore Museum of Art, 10 Art Museum Drive. artbma.org.

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After spending the fall and winter of 2002 following Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez as he sought to revamp his country's laws and redistribute its wealth, filmmakers Kim Bartley and Donnacha O'Briain found themselves at ground zero on April 11, 2002, when the military attempted to topple this self-styled heir to Simon Bolivar. Bartley and O'Briain's documentary also has been shown as Chavez: Inside the Coup, but The Revolution Will Not Be Televised is a better title. At its peak, the film contrasts the distortions of international cable news with veracious footage straight from the streets and the presidential palace.

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[MICHAEL SRAGOW]

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