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The Quick Take for March 7, 2014

Streaming Picks

The beginning of a new month brings a new batch of movies to stream. Netflix has made Pokémon available—two movies and 48 episodes of Pokémon: Black and White. For those who love thrillers (or are watching Hannibal on TV), the critically acclaimed The Silence of the Lambs, with Jodi Foster and Anthony Hopkins, is also available. For romance, watch Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey fall in love on the dance floor in Dirty Dancing. Or for some good laughs with the family, try Stuart Little, one of my favorites growing up.

Critics Roundup

It's a big day at the box office—with some big names too.

300: Rise of An Empire, a sequel to 300, releases today. While there are many reviews of Rise of An Empire (and can all be found here), it seems critics are in agreement: the movie's strength is also its weakness. The Dissolve says it does what most sequels do–"doling out more of the same in even greater doses." Yet its biggest draw is the "immersive imagery and shameless spectacle."

Robin Williams makes an appearance in The Face of Love, in which recently widowed Nikki (Annette Bening) falls in love with her late husband's doppelgänger at an art museum (both are played by Ed Harris). The Dissolve praises Bening's performance but says nobody told her the film would be "a dopey-quasi thriller rather than a devastating quasi-thriller." The A.V. Club says the film presumes that a story and string score are enough to carry a movie. But one amazing performance might be all you need to take a chance on The Face Of Love.

Grand Piano, with Elijah Wood and John Cusack, is about a concert pianist and—a psychopath? Indiewire praises director Eugenio Mira for "breathlessly" combining artistic anxiety and personal desperation. But The Dissolve calls it an unabashed B-movie: the writer, Damien Chazelle, has "created the blueprint for an entertaining bad movie."

Movie News

Though it really tells us nothing of the plot, the first teaser trailer for season 7 of Mad Men is out this week, and that's enough to get excited about. Read more and watch the trailer here.

Almost a year ago we learned Veronica Mars would be returning, but this time on the big screen, funded by fans. Now it's almost time for the new film to be released and the New York Times has all the information you need.

But the funniest piece of news from the week might be the painful moment at the Oscars when John Travolta called Idina Menzel "Adele Dazeem." The best part is that you can now "travoltify" your own name. Enjoy!

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

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The Quick Take for March 7, 2014