New Times picks the best things to do in metro Phoenix from March 21 through 24.
Calling all people who shudder at the blasphemy of “freedom fries,” do a reasonable Amelie impression, and can’t help but click on the latest list of how to look as effortlessly stylish as apparently every woman born in France is preternaturally inclined: Downtown’s resident indie theater FilmBar totally gets it. And that’s why it’s hosting Francophone film week (not a celebration of James Franco) with four movies that’ll make you feel closer to la République. Monday, March 21’s offering is Les Visiteurs, which features a knight, a wizard, and time travel. So, like, allez! Tickets are $9 for the 7:30 p.m. showing. (Don’t fret, Franco-phonies, there will be English subtitles.) Minors will be admitted with a parent or guardian. See thefilmbarphx.com for more. Becky Bartkowski
Diamondbacks vs. Brewers
Sure, it’s just the preseason and a lot of the roster has changed. But the Diamondbacks haven’t forgotten that their last trip to the postseason — way back in 2011 — was thwarted by the Milwaukee Brewers. And on the shoulders of then-National League MVP Ryan Braun (who later acknowledged using banned substances during that season) no less. For Diamondbacks fans and players alike, the wounds still linger. But it’s 2016, and by all accounts the D-backs have the makings of a playoff team, while the Brewers, well, don’t. So you can bet that the Diamondbacks will have a little extra venom in their bite when they host the Brewers at 6:40 p.m. on Monday, March 21, at Salt River Fields, 7555 East Pima Road. Tickets are $11 and up. Visit www.cactusleague.com or call 480-270-5000 for details. Rob Kroehler
Off the Cuff
You have to respect a group of comedians who like to “make people laugh so hard that milk comes out of their noses, even if they’re not drinking milk.” The Off the Cuff Comedy Troupe is a nonprofit organization committed to showing you a good time. As an audience member, you get to help determine the subject matter, as their improvisational performance is filled with scenarios created on-the-spot, based on audience suggestions. The funny words start flying at 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 22, at Changing Hands Bookstore, 6428 South McClintock Drive in Tempe. Admission is free. Call 480-730-0205 or visit www.changinghands.com. Amy Young
Recycle to Mushroom Workshop with Sarah Hurwitz
your next crafternoon? We’re very obviously talking about mushrooms, which Phoenix artist Sarah Hurwitz will help you make from old plastic bottles during the Recycle to Mushroom Workshop at the gallery in the library at Scottsdale Civic Center, 3839 North Drinkwater Boulevard. Hurwitz created whimsical spore specimens and magical mushrooms for the library’s current exhibition, “11 Miles of Color,” which features recycled materials made into fresh artworks. So she’s totally an expert. Bring your own empty bottle to the free workshop, which starts at 3:30 p.m. on Wednesday, March 23. It’s an all-ages event, but kids younger than 13 need an adult to supervise. For details, see www.scottsdalepublicart.org. Becky Bartkowski
It’s verboten to speak the name of the Scottish play within theater walls. (That’s why you may have heard people call it the Scottish play.) Clueless audience members get a pass, as do actors who are literally on stage performing Macbeth. There, we said it.
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You might not know the difference between Banquo, Duncan, and Macduff, but surely you’re familiar with lines such as “Double, double toil and trouble,” and “Out, damned spot.” Class 6 Theatre has set its production of the murder-y tragedy in a lunatic asylum (what we now call a psychiatric hospital). It continues through Sunday, April 3, at Mesa Arts Center, One East Main Street. Tickets are $19 to $21 at 480-644-6500 or www.class6theatre.org. Wednesday, March 23’s showtime is 7:30 p.m. Julie Peterson
"Cattle Track Legends"
A beacon for high-minded creatives since the 1930s and just enough removed from the well-tread gallery scene, the Cattle Track Art Compound remains one of the enduring forces of Scottsdale’s artistic heyday. But for the exhibition “Cattle Track Legends,” art works from some of the Compound’s most notable artists are presented amidst the suburb’s downtown modern-day bustle at Larsen Gallery, 3705 North Bishop Lane. Featuring works from Arizona icons Philip C. Curtis, Fritz Scholder, and Mark McDowell, the show offers a glimpse at the iconic arts incubator from the 1940s, when Curtis moved there, to the present. Get a history lesson from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Thursday, March 24, and through Thursday, March 31. For details, visit www.larsengallery.com or call 480-941-0900. Becky Bartkowski
There are a couple ways to keep yourself sane while watching a terrible movie. The first is to hate-watch that sucker, riffing on the terrible acting and bad effects, à la Mystery Science Theater 3000. The other: Drop out the soundtrack entirely and add in your own dialogue, music, character names, and plot. It’s this second method that the team of local comedians and improv pros at National Comedy Theatre Phoenix has perfected at their regular Movie MASHterpiece showings, and their comedy overhaul abilities can make any turd of a movie — even, god forbid, Entourage — totally watchable.
Make a bad movie good at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, March 24, at 1111 South Longmore in Mesa. Tickets are $8. Call 602-374-5638 or visit nctphoenix.com for more. Zach Fowle