Guest / Limited Access /
The Quick Take for February 21, 2014

Streaming Picks

Blue Jasmine, for which Cate Blanchett has been nominated for an Oscar, explores the problem of pride and is now available on demand and Amazon Instant Play (read our review here). If you're in the mood for a classic, the 1950 award-winning film noir Sunset Boulevard is on Netflix. This year is the 20th anniversary of the Tonya Harding and Nancy Kerrigan scandal, and ESPN has released a 30 by 30 documentary: The Price of Gold. This new look at the controversy is available on Netflix. And for something completely different, season 9 of SpongeBob SquarePants is on Hulu Plus.

Critics' Roundup

The fatalist film Omar, directed by Hany Abu-Assad, was released in theaters today. It follows two young men selected to be suicide bombers. A.O. Scott says Abu-Assad "juxtaposes the routines of everyday life in the West Bank with the brutal facts of Israeli occupation and the resistance to it." (Read his full review for the The New York Timeshere.) Ben Kenigsberg for The A.V. Club writes that (ambiguous) protagonist Adam Bakri "conveys a palpable sense of anxiety as his character navigates a course that affords him few real options, yet dooms him no matter what he does." Jordan Hoffman for The Dissolve calls Omar "a small-scale drama about a hard-to-pin-down individual in an intractable battle far greater than he is."

In Secret may have been a scandalous story in 1867 when it was first published as Thérèse Raquin by Émile Zola, but as a film, it's lost its shock factor. "Therese Raquin," writes Manohla Dargis for The New York Times, "can approach its initial power only if the telling of the tale convulses with the same lunatic intensity that consumes Zola's criminal lovers." The film has also been described as "a surprisingly dull adultery drama that covers standard ground without much flair or insight." (Read Kenigsberg's full review here.) It sounds like In Secret is a period piece that's more like a film noir and not worth the watch.

Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me, the documentary on the 87-year-old actress, Broadway star, and cabaret entertainer, "invites you to reflect on questions that Ms. Stritch asks herself frequently: Who am I when I am off the stage? Without an audience, do I even exist?" (Read Stephen Holden's full review for the The New York Times.) But more than a conventional celebrity profile, Shoot Me "is an unflinchingly honest examination of a woman who is aware that the end is approaching." Jen Chaney for The Dissolve says what we don't want to: "Everybody dies." And yet, Stritch rarely shrinks back from the eternal, and this afternoon with a "vivacious, essential presence . . . feels like time well-spent." (Read The A.V. Club's full review.)

Movie News

The Lego Movie is such a success that Legoland is opening a new exhibit with a behind-the-scenes look at the set.

Tina Fey is set to produce and star in an adaptation of The Taliban Shuffle by journalist Kim Barker.

And Jimmy Fallon won the highest TV ratings of late-night television for his first episode of The Tonight Show. For more opinions from the critics, read Indiewire's roundup here.

Heather Cate is a spring intern with Christianity Today Movies and a student at The King's College.

Tags:
Read These NextSee Our Latest
TrendingChristianity Today's 2015 Book Awards
Christianity Today's 2015 Book Awards
Our picks for the books most likely to shape evangelical life, thought, and culture.
Editor's PickWhat Forgotten Christmas Tradition Should Churches Revive?
What Forgotten Christmas Tradition Should Churches Revive?
Rooting our celebration of Christ’s birth more deeply in our lives.
Comments
View this article in Reader Mode
Christianity Today
The Quick Take for February 21, 2014