List Film

Odeon South Woodford

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60/64 High Road, South Woodford, London, E18 2QL

American Sniper

American Sniper
  • 3 stars
  • 2014
  • US
  • 134 min
  • Directed by: Clint Eastwood
  • Cast: Bradley Cooper, Sienna Miller, Jake McDorman

Eastwood, noted for his kinship with the common soldier, is the ideal director for this true-life drama based on the autobiography of Navy SEAL sniper Chris Kyle (Cooper). Cooper continues to be impressive but the film unravels when it shows Kyle's home life, failing to engage with either marital or wider political issues.

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Mon 26 Jan
Tue 27 Jan
Wed 28 Jan
Thu 29 Jan

Birdman

Birdman
  • 4 stars
  • 2014
  • US
  • 119 min
  • Directed by: Alejandro González Iñárritu
  • Cast: Michael Keaton, Emma Stone, Edward Norton, Andrea Riseborough, Zach Galifianakis, Naomi Watts, Amy Ryan

Riggan Thompson (Keaton) played Birdman, a popular Hollywood superhero, but that was a while ago and he's having trouble getting the second art of his career started. A stellar cast (Norton, Watts, Stone) and fluid script prop up an award-worthy turn from Keaton, all mesmerisingly photographed by Lubezki. Highly imaginative.

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Mon 26 Jan
Tue 27 Jan
Wed 28 Jan
Thu 29 Jan

Ex Machina

Ex Machina
  • 4 stars
  • 2015
  • UK/US
  • 108 min
  • 15
  • Directed by: Alex Garland
  • Cast: Domhnall Gleeson, Oscar Isaac, Alicia Vikander

Ambitious young coder Caleb (Gleeson) wins a competition to take part in a research experiment at the hmoe of his CEO (Isaac) – where he meets the experiment itself, robot Ava (Vikander). The ensuing battle of the sexes is played out through dramatic, witty and provocative discussion, making for smart, accessible and relevant sci-fi.

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Mon 26 Jan
Tue 27 Jan
Wed 28 Jan
Thu 29 Jan

Foxcatcher

Foxcatcher
  • 4 stars
  • 2014
  • US
  • 130 min
  • Directed by: Bennett Miller
  • Cast: Channing Tatum, Steve Carell, Mark Ruffalo

Mark Schultz (Tatum) is a gold-medal-winning Olympic wrestler who exists in the shadow of his more successful older brother Dave (Ruffalo); then eccentric billionaire John du Pont (Carell) offers to become Mark's sponsor. Based on a true story, it's an ominous study of psychological torment, with career-best performances from Tatum and the compellingly creepy Carell.

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Wed 28 Jan

Fury

Fury
  • 4 stars
  • 2014
  • US/UK
  • 134 min
  • 15
  • Directed by: David Ayer
  • Cast: Brad Pitt, Shia LaBeouf, Logan Lerman, Michael Peña, Jon Bernthal, Jason Issacs, Scott Eastwood

The tale of a Sherman tank crew, led by Sgt Don 'Wardaddy' Collier (Pitt), in the final weeks of WW II. Grim and intense (heads and limbs blown off, bodies crushed under tanks) but in one of his finest performances, Pitt shows the humanity beneath the gung-ho façade; Lerman is also impressive as the rookie.

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Tue 27 Jan
Thu 29 Jan
Tue 3 Feb

The Grand Budapest Hotel

The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • 5 stars
  • 2014
  • US
  • 100 min
  • 15
  • Directed by: Wes Anderson
  • Cast: Ralph Fiennes, Saoirse Ronan, Edward Norton, Jude Law, Owen Wilson, Tilda Swinton, Willem Dafoe, Bill Murray, Adrien Brody, Jeff Goldblum, Harvey Keitel, F. Murray Abraham, Tom Wilkinson

Gustave H (Fiennes), the flamboyantly orderly concierge of the Grand Budapest Hotel, likes to romance the elderly guests, but when his wealthy lover (Swinton) dies mysteriously, he finds himself framed for murder. Perhaps Anderson's most uncompromisingly eccentric and perfectly realised film to date, with an astonishing and revelatory comic performance from Fiennes.

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Mon 26 Jan
Tue 27 Jan

The Imitation Game

The Imitation Game
  • 4 stars
  • 2014
  • UK/USA
  • 113 min
  • Directed by: Morten Tyldum
  • Cast: Benedict Cumberbatch, Keira Knightley, Matthew Goode

Historical drama about Alan Turing (Cumberbatch), father of modern computer science; how he and a team of codebreakers figured out how to beat the German Enigma machine during WWII, and his tragically early death. Triumphant slice of British heritage drama, with great emotional force and a touching performance from Cumberbatch.

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Mon 26 Jan
Tue 27 Jan
Wed 28 Jan

Into the Woods

Into the Woods
  • 3 stars
  • 2014
  • US
  • 124 min
  • Directed by: Rob Marshall
  • Cast: Meryl Streep, Emily Blunt, James Corden, Anna Kendrick, Chris Pine, Tracey Ullman, Christine Baranski, Johnny Depp

Disney's long-in-the-making adaptation of Sondheim and Lapine's musical, in which a clutch of fairytale characters help a baker (Corden) and his wife (Blunt) lift a curse which prevents them from having a baby. Despite some great moments, the story drags; if you're a fan it's likely to please, but it won't win anyone else over.

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Mon 26 Jan
Tue 27 Jan
Wed 28 Jan
Thu 29 Jan

Kingsman: The Secret Service

Kingsman: The Secret Service
  • 2015
  • UK
  • Directed by: Matthew Vaughn
  • Cast: Colin Firth, Samuel L Jackson, Mark Strong, Taron Egerton, Michael Caine

A veteran secret agent takes a young upstart under his wing.

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Thu 29 Jan
Fri 30 Jan
Sat 31 Jan
Sun 1 Feb
Mon 2 Feb
Tue 3 Feb
Wed 4 Feb
Thu 5 Feb

Metropolitan Opera: Les Contes d'Hoffmann

Live from the Met
  • 2015
  • US
  • E

Offenbach's fantastical final opera, based on three tales by German Romantic novelist ETA Hoffmann.

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Sat 31 Jan

Mortdecai

Mortdecai
  • 1 star
  • 2015
  • US
  • 106 min
  • 12A
  • Directed by: David Koepp
  • Written by: Kyril Bonfiglioli (novel)
  • Cast: Johnny Depp, Gwyneth Paltrow, Ewan McGregor, Olivia Munn, Jeff Goldblum, Paul Bettany, Aubrey Plaza, Oliver Platt, Ulrich Thomsen

Devious bounder Charlie Mortdecai (Depp), together with faithful Cockney manservant Jock (Bettany), becomes embroiled in a kooky con involving art forgery. This thoroughly unamusing spoof of a 60s caper flick features projectile vomiting and boob jokes instead of comedy.

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Mon 26 Jan
Tue 27 Jan
Wed 28 Jan
Thu 29 Jan

A Most Violent Year

A Most Violent Year
  • 4 stars
  • 2014
  • US
  • 125 min
  • 15
  • Directed by: JC Chandor
  • Cast: Oscar Isaac, Jessica Chastain, David Oyelowo, Alessandro Nivola, Albert Brooks

New York City, 1981: Abel (Isaac) is a businessman who's married into dirty money, but who's determined to remain legit even as his rivals are circling. Deliberately confounding the clichés of crime movies, Chandor controls the film with real poise. Isaac is compelling and intriguing, but Chastain steals the show as his swaggering, confident wife.

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Mon 26 Jan
Tue 27 Jan
Wed 28 Jan
Thu 29 Jan

Paddington

Paddington
  • 4 stars
  • 2014
  • UK
  • 95 min
  • PG
  • Directed by: Paul King
  • Cast: Ben Whishaw (voice), Nicole Kidman, Hugh Bonneville, Sally Hawkins

The story of an illegal immigrant from Peru and his efforts to be integrated into British society. He's a bear, by the way. Whishaw imbues the CGI Paddington with immense charm, the rest of the cast are excellent and the exuberant direction and smart, knowing script make for a genuine delight.

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Mon 26 Jan
Tue 27 Jan
Wed 28 Jan

The Rewrite

The Rewrite
  • 3 stars
  • 2014
  • US
  • 106 min
  • 12A
  • Directed by: Marc Lawrence
  • Written by: Marc Lawrence
  • Cast: Hugh Grant, Marisa Tomei, Aja Naomi King, Allison Janney

Hollywood screenwriter Keith (Grant) hasn't had a hit since 1999. Needing money, he accepts a writing residency in an upstate New York university, where he meets hard-working single mom Holly (Tomei). Despite an excruciating first 20 minutes, Grant is on excellent form, the leads have chemistry and Lawrence avoids mawkishness. Wobbly but entertaining.

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Tue 27 Jan
Thu 29 Jan

Royal Opera House: Andrea Chenier

Royal Opera House: Andrea Chenier
  • 2015
  • UK
  • Directed by: David McVicar

Live screening of David McVicar's new production of the French Revolution drama. Starring Jonas Kaufmann and Eva-Maria Westbroek conducted by Antonio Pappano.

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Thu 29 Jan

Taken

Taken
  • 3 stars
  • 2008
  • France
  • 93 min
  • 15
  • Directed by: Pierre Morel
  • Written by: Luc Besson, Robert Mark Kamen
  • Cast: Liam Neeson, Maggie Grace, Leland Orser, Jon Gries, David Warshofsky, Katie Cassidy, Holly Valance, Famke Janssen

Retired US secret agent operative Bryan (Neeson) steps into fray when his daughter Kim (Grace), with his ex-wife (Janssen), is 'taken' by sex traffickers on a trip to Paris. A high octane, blood thumping update of Paul Schrader's 1979 'Hardcore' is every bit as ridiculous as it sounds but no less enjoyable for it, with Francophile attitude, Chekhovian familial regret, over the top torture and not a fundamentalist Muslim in sight.

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Mon 26 Jan

Taken 3

Taken 3
  • 2 stars
  • 2015
  • US
  • Directed by: Olivier Megaton
  • Written by: Luc Besson, Robert Mark Kamen
  • Cast: Liam Neeson, Maggie Grace, Forest Whitaker

Bryan Mills (Neeson), ex-CIA operative, arrives at his apartment to find his ex-wife (Janssen) dead and himself framed for the crime. The third instalment of this increasingly creaky franchise feels as dozy as a pensioner in the midday sun; the fights and pile-ups are fine, but the characters are almost an afterthought.

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Mon 26 Jan
Tue 27 Jan
Wed 28 Jan
Thu 29 Jan

Testament of Youth

Testament of Youth
  • 3 stars
  • 2015
  • UK
  • 129 min
  • 12A
  • Directed by: James Kent
  • Cast: Alicia Vikander, Kit Harington, Taron Egerton

Vera (Vikander) is a wilful and intelligent English girl; when her friend Victor (Morgan), fiancé Roland (Harington) and brother Edward (Egerton) go off to fight in WW I, she follows them to be a nurse. Sparing and respectful adaptation of Brittain's 1933 memoir; tasteful rather than innovative, it still packs a punch.

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Mon 26 Jan
Tue 27 Jan
Wed 28 Jan
Thu 29 Jan

The Theory of Everything

The Theory of Everything
  • 3 stars
  • 2014
  • US/UK
  • 123 min
  • PG
  • Directed by: James Marsh
  • Cast: Eddie Redmayne, Felicity Jones, Tom Prior

Stephen Hawking (Redmayne) and Jane Wilde (Jones) lock eyes at a university party, but their budding love affair is given a blow by his diagnosis of motor neurone disease. Redmayne is astonishingly good and Jones inspires sympathy and admiration, but the script is never really convincing.

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Mon 26 Jan
Tue 27 Jan
Wed 28 Jan

Whiplash

Whiplash
  • 5 stars
  • 2014
  • US
  • 106 min
  • 15
  • Directed by: Damien Chazelle
  • Cast: Miles Teller, JK Simmons, Melissa Benoist

Andrew (Teller) is an aspiring jazz drummer at Shaffer Conservatory, who falls under the influence of terrifying conductor/instructor Terence Fletcher (Simmons). Teller thrives as the obsessively determined Andrew, and lifelong supporting actor Simmons emerges with formidable authority as the psychotically particular Fletcher. Riveting, audaciously edited and voraciously performed.

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Mon 26 Jan
Tue 27 Jan
Wed 28 Jan
Thu 29 Jan

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