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Top Picks: James Bay's 'Chaos and the Calm,' the Berlin Philharmonic at the movies, and more

The streaming service Acorn TV lets you find great international TV post-'Downton Abbey,' acclaimed movies 'Brooklyn' and 'The Big Short' will soon be available on DVD and Blu-ray, and more top picks.

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Shining songwriter

When a performer becomes immensely popular, there’s usually a very good reason why. Singer/songwriter/heartthrob James Bay is a case in point. Chaos and the Calm, showcasing his beguiling, stirring, heart-on-sleeve songwriting, catapulted the young Brit to the top of the pop and indie charts last year, with no descent in sight. Bay was the tall, lanky, hatted duet partner of another rising star, Tori Kelly, at this year’s Grammys, and they wowed the audience with their passion, precision, and singing chops.

For your movie list

Two of the most acclaimed films of 2015 (both of which were nominees for the Oscar for best picture) will be available on DVD and Blu-ray March 15. Heartwarming and vibrant Brooklyn tells the story of an Irish woman (Saoirse Ronan) who comes to America. And The Big Short (starring Christian Bale and Steve Carell) is entertaining and surprisingly easy to follow considering it tells the story of the complex factors that led to the 2008 financial collapse in the United States.

Museum pocket guide

Looking for an educational spot to visit while on your next family trip or “staycation” in the US? The app museumGO lets you choose a city and then scroll through a list of museums, art galleries, and historical and cultural sites. Addresses, hours, and admission prices are included as well as a link to the website of each location. The app costs 99 cents. Check it out at www.museumgo.co/app.php.

British TV

Missing “Downton Abbey” already? Check out what else international TV has to offer with the streaming service Acorn TV, which offers recent programs such as “Foyle’s War” as well as older acclaimed shows such as the 1970s adaptation of “Poldark.” Users can opt for a 30-day free trial, a monthly membership for $4.99, or a yearly subscription for $49.99.

Big-screen culture

Fathom Events has two interesting offerings for the month of March. On March 19, moviegoers can see the Berlin Philharmonic at work with the feature “The Beethoven Project,” which shows the orchestra tackling two of the composer’s most famous symphonies. On March 20, celebrate the 60th anniversary of The Ten Commandments by experiencing its epic scenes on the big screen. Check for a participating theater near you at www.fathomevents.com.

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