Big-Screen Cheat Sheet: Which Movie Should You See This Weekend?

From Oz: The Great and Powerful to Dead Man Down, get the scoop on what's playing in theaters

From James Franco, Mila Kunis and Michelle Williams going on an adventure to the Emerald City in Oz: The Great and Powerful to Colin Farrell plotting a course of revenge against Terrence Howard in Dead Man Down, here are the movies to check out this weekend. Plus, the films that have already hit theaters! Will you be grabbing your popcorn and catching one of them this weekend?

Oz: The Great and Powerful (March 8)

Oz the Great and Powerful Review

Walt Disney Pictures

Short Story: We know the story of Dorothy and Toto. We know the story of Glinda and Elphaba in Wicked. But what about the story behind the wizard himself? Oz: The Great and Powerful takes us on that journey, revealing how small-time magician Oscar Diggs (James Franco) landed the job for which he is now famous. Also starring Mila Kunis as the Wicked Witch of the West and Michelle Williams as Glinda.
Click here for the official movie site!

What They're Saying: "I suspect that even [kids] will be fidgeting during the last 45 minutes; like so many other recent tentpoles, the film is stuffed with three endings too many." -- Entertainment Weekly

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 64%

Good for Kids? No childhood is complete without many repeat viewings of The Wizard of Oz. But according to Common Sense Media, even this PG-rated prequel contains "dark surrealism, wicked witches and ominous imagery [that] could make this film quite scary for young kids."
Click here for the full Common Sense review!

Dead Man Down (March 8)

Dead Man Down Review


Short Story: Forget romantic sunsets and long walks on the beach. In Dead Man Down, the common ground between Victor (Colin Farrell) and Beatrice (Noomi Rapace) is a mutual interest in exacting revenge on their enemies. Victor is plotting against crime kingpin Alphonse (Terrence Howard), a man who has shattered Victor's happiness. But when Beatrice needs help getting redemption of her own, she and Victor find themselves in a tangled web of lies and deceit. Sounds scintillating!
Click here for the official movie site!

Good for Kids? Coming from Niels Arden Oplev, the director of Sweden's original Girl with the Dragon Tattoo film, Dead Man Down is certainly unsuitable for young viewers. The film is rated R, primarily for violence and language throughout.

21 and Over (March 1)

21 and Over Review

Relativity Media

Short Story: From the writers of The Hangover comes... The Hangover. Well, pretty much. In this racy comedy, med school hopeful Jeff Chang (Justin Chon) celebrates his 21st birthday with best friends Miller (Miles Teller) and Casey (Skylar Astin) the night before his big exam. Naturally, the night quickly spirals into a drunken marathon of debauchery and embarrassment. Cheers!
Click here for the official movie site!

What They're Saying: "These guys get into more trouble in one night than members of this film's target audience will encounter in their entire college lives." -- The New York Times

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 29%

Good for Kids? Judging by its R-rating, 21 and Over seems aptly named. The film includes sexual content, strong language, graphic nudity, drugs and drinking, making it appropriate for adult audiences only.

Stoker (March 1)

Stoker Review

Fox Searchlight Pictures

Short Story: What's family without a little dysfunction? When India's (Mia Wasikowska) father dies unexpectedly, she and her emotionally unstable mother (Nicole Kidman) struggle to cope. That is, until India's long-lost Uncle Charlie (Matthew Goode) moves in with the ladies, who become increasingly drawn to him as they move through the grieving process.
Click here for the official movie site!

What They're Saying: "The true problem is that it's a film that throws a lot of heavy topics at us -- lust, incest, murder, psychopathy, inherited family sins -- for the sheer sake of throwing them." -- The Atlantic Wire

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 70%

Good for Kids? Not really! Stoker is rated R for disturbing violent and sexual content, so it's definitely not a film for little ones.

Jack the Giant Slayer (March 1)

Jack the Giant Slayer Review

Warner Bros.

Short Story: Based on the tale of Jack and the Beanstalk, Jack the Giant Slayer centers around a young farmhand (Nicholas Hoult) who inadvertently opens the gateway to a world of giants. When the giants start a war to reclaim long-lost land, it is up to Jack to protect his kingdom and the princess he loves (Eleanor Tomlinson).
Click here for the official movie site!

What They're Saying: "You barely care about most of the live characters, let alone the CG ones. The action is never captivating or even very convincing. And the story is mostly an excuse for outsized action setpieces -- and there's very little that's magical about those." -- The Huffington Post

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 52%

Good for Kids? Don't let Jack the Giant Slayer's fairytale roots fool you. According to Common Sense Media, the film has potential to be a bit frightening, featuring "danger around every corner, life-like digitized giants and intense battle scenes."
Click here for the full Common Sense review!

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