NEW YEAR’S DAY The Pirates! In An Adventure With Scientists!
Hugh Grant voices the Pirate Captain, a bungling buccaneer with his heart set on winning the Pirate Of The Year award, in this uproarious animation.
E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial
A lonely boy befriends a stranded alien and teaches us all a thing or two about friendship in Steven Spielberg’s timeless sci-fi fantasy. Henry Thomas heads the cast.
Prequel to the 2001 Pixar hit, finding out how the two beastly friends first met while at college. Mike and Sulley are struggling to make the grade, but for very different reasons. If they work out how to play off each other’s strengths, they might just get to graduate.
The blue birds flock together again for a fun follow-up to the 2011 animated avian comedy. Lovebird macaws Blu and Jewel take to the skies to start a new life with their three chicks in the wilds of the Amazon. There, they are met by the vengeful cockatoo Nigel.
Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol
Tom Cruise hits the ground running in this latest outing for the Impossible Missions Force, who are shut down after being assumed guilty of a bombing. Cruise goes rogue to clear their name.
Whitney Houston: A Tragic Love
The life of Whitney Houston is laid bare in this powerful TV movie, directed by Angela Bassett. Yaya DaCosta is sensational as the singer, whose voice and soul are ravaged by addiction and her tumultuous marriage to Bobby Brown.
It’s Glee with guitars, as music-loving highschool misfits compete in a battle-of-thebands contest – and find love and acceptance along the way. Watch out for a cameo appearance by the late, great David Bowie. Directed by Todd Graff.
Superior war drama following a group of Allied agents who are parachuted into occupied Europe to disable the Nazis’ fast-developing missile programme. An all-star cast includes George Peppard and Sophia Loren.
Man Of Steel
Henry Cavill (above) steps into Superman’s flamboyant boots in this action-packed comic-book reboot. Here, the superpowered alien defends his adopted home from genocidal invaders from his own planet. Co-starring Laurence Fishburne.
Sandra Bullock calls her Miss Congeniality role to mind as she plays Sarah Ashbur, an uptight FBI agent, here paired with straight-talking cop Melissa McCarthy in a bid to bring down a drug boss. Fun action comedy from Paul Feig.
Dallas Buyers Club
Matthew McConaughey (above) and Jared Leto won Oscars for their roles (lead and supporting, respectively) in this touching fact-based drama about efforts to illegally smuggle HIV drugs into the US from Mexico. Music includes Shuggie Otis’ Sweet Thang.
Surveillance thriller starring Michelle Monaghan and Shia LaBeouf as two ordinary people who start receiving commands via their mobile phones. They must obey the instructions – or else.
TUESDAY Confessions Of A Shopaholic
Likeable Isla Fisher (above) is Rebecca Bloomwood, a clueless girl who doesn’t drop, no matter how much she shops. Standard romcom fare, but you get behind Fisher’s character and wish her well, no matter how poor her financial judgment.
The Bourne Identity
Matt Damon turned action hero with this first in a series of well-done, successful thrillers. Damon is Jason Bourne, although he doesn’t know it yet. With people out to kill him, he needs to find out who he is – and fast. Brian Cox is among the supporting cast who could be friend or foe.
Sylvester Stallone stars as a mountain ranger taking on one last mission before he retires in a high-adrenaline adventure thriller that makes the most of its mountain scenery.
The Grand Seduction
The residents of a small town go to extreme lengths to persuade a visiting doctor to become a permanent resident in this comedy starring Brendan Gleeson, Cathy Jones and Taylor Kitsch.
Robert De Niro and Ben Stiller continue to fail to bond as father- and son-in-law in this third Meet The Parents film. Barbra Streisand, Blythe Danner, Teri Polo, Laura Dern, Harvey Keitel and Dustin Hoffman also star in this family antics sequel.
WEDNESDAY Little Women
Louisa M. Alcott’s classic novel is adapted with an all-star cast. Susan Sarandon is Marmee, mother to four strong-willed daughters who are growing up, full of spirit and imagination, in Massachusetts during the American Civil War.
Heart Of Murder
Heart transplant recipient Emma (Makenzie Vega) discovers that her donor might have been the victim of a murder, and sets out to learn the truth. Grisly theme, feeble execution.
12 Years A Slave
Director Steve McQueen’s Oscar-winning drama is based on the incredible true story of Solomon Northup (Chiwetel Ejiofor) a free black man living in pre-Civil War New York, who was abducted and sold into slavery. Also starring Michael Fassbender.
The Shawshank Redemption
This adaptation of a Stephen King novella has gone on to be considered one of the great films of its time. Tim Robbins is the man doing time in prison – for a crime he didn’t commit… .
By-the-numbers spy game thriller made all the more watchable by its two leads, Al Pacino and Colin Farrell. Pacino is the CIA instructor who recruits Farrell’s computer genius, deploying him to sniff out an enemy in their midst – but what’s training and what’s real?
The Perks Of Being A Wallflower
Two fantasy franchise child stars – Logan Lerman (Percy Jackson) and Emma Watson (Harry Potter) – get a transitional gig in this adaptation of Stephen Chbosky’s acclaimed novel. Watson is the high-school teen who is drawn to Lerman.
THURSDAY The Thirty-Nine Steps
Robert Powell (above) takes on the role of Richard Hannay in John Buchan’s breakneck thriller – as he would again in two series of TV’s Hannay in 1988 and 1989. This moves the ending from the Kent coast to Big Ben, but is actually one of the more faithful adaptations.
All Creatures Great And Small
This prequel to the long-running TV series stars Simon Ward in the role of newly qualified vet James Herriot, who gets a crash course in calf delivery and pen-side manner from Anthony Hopkins as eccentric animal doc Siegfried Farnon. Lisa Harrow plays the future Mrs Herriot.
Quentin Tarantino plays fast and loose with history – and spelling – in his violent Second World War adventure following a group of Jewish-American soldiers out to destroy the Nazis.
Real-life brothers Gary and Martin Kemp star as the infamous London gangsters in this gritty biopic. Charting their rise to fame and notoriety, it’s an unflinching account of a glamorous world underpinned by ruthless, sadistic violence.
David Lean’s epic romantic drama is set in west Kerry in 1916, and stars Sarah Miles (above) as Rosy Ryan, a married woman whose affair with a British Army officer leads to tragic consequences.
Die Hard With A Vengeance
This third film in the action franchise more or less maintains the quality. This time, Bruce Willis’s John McClane buddies up with Samuel L. Jackson for a wild-goose chase across NYC.
FRIDAY Fire Down Below
Rita Hayworth is on smouldering form as she comes between seafaring best friends Robert Mitchum and Jack Lemmon in the Caribbean. The splendid cast gives it superior novelty value. By Pixar’s high standards, this comes close to backfiring, but an average Pixar film still outclasses the rest – and Lightning McQueen (above, with pal Mater) will delight youngsters.
Comedy starring Jennifer Aniston and Vince Vaughn as a couple who split up, but can’t agree on who should move out. So, they continue living together while each of them secretly plots to drive the other out.
Fun With Dick And Jane
When a businessman loses his job, he and his wife turn to crime as a way of maintaining their previous standard of living. Comedy starring George Segal, Jane Fonda and Ed McMahon.
Emily Browning stars in this psychological horror as a woman whose mother’s death haunts her. Browning is well-suited to the role, but the Korean original, A Tale Of Two Sisters, is better.
The superhero film is flipped on its head in this neatly observed shaky-cam sci-fi tale. Dane DeHaan is one of the teens who acquire superpowers and film their misadventures.
Good Will Hunting
Matt Damon and Ben Affleck made their impressive screenwriting debut with this engaging drama. Damon takes the lead, too, as Will Hunting – the wayward lad who turns out to have surprising hidden depths.
SATURDAY Memphis Belle
The crewmen of a B-17 bomber prepare for their final mission – a raid on a heavily defended German city. Fact-based Second World War drama, starring Matthew Modine and Eric Stoltz (above).
Mutiny On The Bounty
Marlon Brando leads a revolt in this seafaring adventure, which is based on a true story. He stars as Christian Fletcher, who leads a mutiny against the tyrannical Captain Bligh (played by Trevor Howard).
Ridley Scott’s Oscar-winning period epic stars Russell Crowe as a former Roman general who is sold into slavery and forced to become a gladiator. Joaquin Phoenix is also on strong form as the emperor. Music by Hans Zimmer and Lisa Gerrard.
Martin Scorsese’s classic crime drama follows Henry Hill (Ray Liotta) as he rises through the ranks of the Mafia. But his ascent is threatened by drugs and his volatile friend Tommy (an electrifying Joe Pesci). Based on Nicholas Pileggi’s novel.
The Cold Light of Day
A man searching for his kidnapped family is caught in a conflict between rival intelligence agents. Thriller, starring Henry Cavill, Bruce Willis and Sigourney Weaver.
A former CIA agent investigates the murder of a senator, which he believes to be the work of an infamous Soviet assassin. Spy thriller, with Richard Gere, Stephen Moyer and Topher Grace.