List Film

Vue Newcastle-under-Lyme

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The Square, Market Arcade, High Street, Newcastle-under-Lyme, Staffordshire, ST5 1PT

Annie

Annie
  • 3 stars
  • 2014
  • US
  • 118 min
  • PG
  • Directed by: Will Gluck
  • Cast: Jamie Foxx, Quvenzhané Wallis, Rose Byrne

Annie (Wallis) leads a group of multi-racial foster kids in Harlem; when grumpy magnate Will Stacks (Foxx) saves her from being run over, he's persuaded to become her guardian. Wallis (Beasts of the Southern Wild) has real screen presence, but it's largely forgettable.

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Mon 29 Dec
Tue 30 Dec
Wed 31 Dec
Thu 1 Jan

The Best of Me

The Best of Me
  • 2 stars
  • 2014
  • US
  • 117 min
  • 12A
  • Directed by: Michael Hoffman
  • Cast: James Marsden, Michelle Monaghan, Liana Liberato

Dawson (Marsden), an insanely handsome, inexplicably single oil rig worker who's also got hidden depths (he reads Stephen Hawking), has pined for his high-school girlfriend (Monaghan) for 21 years. Then they meet. An even-more-listless-than-usual Nicholas Sparks adaptation with the button-pushing ability of a blind man and an ending of industrial-strength stupidity.

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Mon 29 Dec

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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Thu 1 Jan

The Book of Life

The Book of Life
  • 4 stars
  • 2014
  • US
  • 95 min
  • U
  • Directed by: Jorge R Gutierrez
  • Cast: Zoe Saldana, Channing Tatum, Diego Luna, Ron Perlman

Manolo (Luna) and best friend Joaquin (Tatum) are both in love with feisty Maria (Saldana), but it all goes El Sur when squabbling gods La Muerte (del Castillo) and Xibalba (Perlman) make a wager over who'll win her. Lively, colourful animation exploring dark themes, with great gags, superb voice work, and a delightful soundtrack.

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Mon 29 Dec
Tue 30 Dec
Wed 31 Dec
Thu 1 Jan

Dumb and Dumber To

Dumb and Dumber To
  • 3 stars
  • 2014
  • US
  • 109 min
  • Directed by: Bobby Farrelly, Peter Farrelly
  • Cast: Jim Carrey, Jeff Daniels

Twenty years after the original movie, Harry (Daniels) and Lloyd (Carrey) go on a road trip to find Harry's daughter Penny (Melvin). Despite some simple and effective gags the plot is too contrived with not enough payoff, and the Farrellys have retained their signature bad taste but left out the heart.

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Mon 29 Dec
Tue 30 Dec
Wed 31 Dec

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies
  • 3 stars
  • 2014
  • US/New Zealand
  • 144 min
  • 12A
  • Directed by: Peter Jackson
  • Written by: Fran Walsh (screenplay), Philippa Boyens (screenplay), Peter Jackson (screenplay), Guillermo del Toro (screenplay), J. R. R. Tolkien (novel)
  • Cast: Martin Freeman, Ian McKellen, Richard Armitage, Andy Serkis, Benedict Cumberbatch, Graham McTavish, Ken Stott, Hugo Weaving, James Nesbitt, Luke Evans, Stephen Fry, Billy Connolly, Evangeline Lilly, Christopher Lee, Cate Blanchett, Ian Holm, Elijah Wood

Smaug's on the rampage, Thorin is consumed with greed and war breaks out. The final instalment of Jackson's Middle-earth adventures features moments of spirited action and some terrific performances, but like the other Hobbit films it pales in comparison to the episodes of the previous trilogy.

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Mon 29 Dec
Tue 30 Dec
Wed 31 Dec
Thu 1 Jan

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1
  • 4 stars
  • 2014
  • US
  • 125 min
  • 12A
  • Directed by: Francis Lawrence
  • Cast: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Harrelson, Elizabeth Banks, Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Julianne Moore

Carving the final book in the Hunger Games series into two movies pays off, giving rhythm to a story that might otherwise have felt rushed. Action and politics are confidently balanced, Sutherland is deliciously vile as ever, Hutcherson is finally given something interesting to do and while Lawrence is rightly the star, the older actors are a pleasure.

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Mon 29 Dec
Tue 30 Dec
Wed 31 Dec

The Jungle Book

Jungle Book
  • 4 stars
  • 1967
  • US
  • 78 min
  • U
  • Directed by: Wolfgang Reitherman
  • Cast: Bruce Reitherman, Phil Harris, Sebastian Cabot, Louis Prima, George Sanders, Sterling Holloway

Growing up in the jungle, young Mowgli learns from the animals around him. Enjoyable Disney, a long way from Kipling's book, but the songs are wonderful.

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Mon 29 Dec
Tue 30 Dec
Wed 31 Dec
Thu 1 Jan

Nativity 3: Dude, Where's My Donkey?!

Nativity 3: Dude, Where's My Donkey?!
  • 2 stars
  • 2014
  • UK
  • 109 min
  • U
  • Directed by: Debbie Isitt
  • Written by: Debbie Isitt
  • Cast: Adam Garcia, Catherine Tate, Celia Imrie

The third film in the series sees the kids from St Bernardette's helping teacher Mr Shepherd (Clunes) recover from a donkey-inflicted bout of amnesia. The Christmas story is crossed with the formulaic dance movie, with results that may prove testing to short attention spans. Unnecessarily long and annoyingly repetitive.

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Mon 29 Dec
Tue 30 Dec
Wed 31 Dec

Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb

Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb
  • 2 stars
  • 2014
  • US
  • Directed by: Shawn Levy
  • Cast: Ben Stiller, Robin Williams, Dan Stevens, Ricky Gervais, Rebel Wilson, Ben Kingsley, Owen Wilson

Former museum nightwatchman Larry (Stiller), now a manager at New York's Museum of Natural History, goes to London to rekindle a magical object. Stiller looks bored, and despite some refreshing cameos and the last, shining glimpse of Williams, it's so laboured and lousy it makes you want to punch yourself in the face.

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Mon 29 Dec
Tue 30 Dec
Wed 31 Dec
Thu 1 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 29 Dec
Tue 30 Dec
Wed 31 Dec
Thu 1 Jan

The Penguins of Madagascar

The Penguins of Madagascar
  • 3 stars
  • 2014
  • US
  • 92 min
  • Directed by: Eric Darnell, Simon J. Smith
  • Cast: Tom McGrath, Chris Miller, John DiMaggio, Christopher Knights, Benedict Cumberbatch, John Malkovich, Ken Jeong, Annet Mahendru, Peter Stormare

The espionage-savvy penguins team up with an interspecies special forces group, to tangle with octopus/scientist Dr Octavius Brine (Malkovich). The knockabout style offers few chances for genuine drama and the result is a lighthearted, frenetic but rather unimaginative romp, a step down from the psychedelic wit of Europe's Most Wanted.

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Tue 30 Dec
Wed 31 Dec

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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Thu 1 Jan
Fri 2 Jan
Sat 3 Jan
Sun 4 Jan
Mon 5 Jan
Tue 6 Jan
Wed 7 Jan

Unbroken

Unbroken
  • 3 stars
  • 2014
  • US
  • 137 min
  • Directed by: Angelina Jolie
  • Written by: Joel Coen (screenplay), Ethan Coen (screenplay) , Richard LaGravenese (screenplay), William Nicholson (screenplay), Laura Hillenbrand (book)
  • Cast: Jack O'Connell, Garrett Hedlund, Domhnall Gleeson

Staggering true story of Louis Zamperini (O'Connell), an Olympic runner who in WW II became a USAAF bombardier who was shot down, survived in a raft for days and ended up in a Japanese POW camp. Jolie's directorial skills are much improved, but there's just too much story going for any character development.

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Mon 29 Dec
Tue 30 Dec
Wed 31 Dec
Thu 1 Jan

The Woman in Black: Angel of Death

The Woman in Black: Angel of Death
  • 2 stars
  • 2015
  • UK
  • 98 min
  • 15
  • Directed by: Tom Harper
  • Cast: Helen McCrory, Jeremy Irvine, Adrian Rawlins, Oaklee Pendergast, Ned Dennehy

A group of children evacuated from the Blitz are placed in the dreaded Eel Marsh House, along with their teacher Eve (Fox), whereupon the titular spectre awakens and starts picking them off. A suspense-free, tedious sequel to the atmospheric 2012 movie, with cheap jump scares and a cliché-ridden screenplay.

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Thu 1 Jan
Fri 2 Jan
Sat 3 Jan
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Wed 7 Jan

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