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Manchester Cinema Guide - The Hobbit
Manchester Cinemas
Manchester cinema guide ~ What's on in Manchester cinemas 20th - 26th December 2013.
films now showing:
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Manchester Cinemas - Gravity
Gravity 3D12a certificate
Our Review:5 stars
DEFINITELY MUST-SEE: Sci-fi thriller in which a medical engineer and an astronaut work together to survive after an accident leaves them adrift in space with their oxygen running dangerously low [watch trailer]
Starring: Sandra Bullock, George Clooney, Ed Harris
"The film of the year! " ~ Empire
"A stunning space saga that takes off for new technical frontiers... Ground control to Major Oscar" ~ Total Film
"The trailers were right for once – Alfonso Cuarón's disaster movie set in space is one of the year's best" ~ Little White Lies
Manchester Cinemas - It's A Wonderful Life
It's A Wonderful LifeU certificate
Our Review:5 stars
DEFINITELY MUST-SEE: An angel helps a compassionate but despairingly frustrated businessman by showing what life would have been like if he never existed in this cinema re-screening of the classic 1946 black & white film, regarded by most as the best Christmas movie ever [watch trailer]
Starring: James Stewart, Donna Reed, Lionel Barrymore, Thomas Mitchell, Henry Travers
"It is the greatest Christmas film of all time" ~ Total Film
"Enjoy it in a cinema so you can sob among others" ~ Empire
Manchester Cinemas - Blue Is The Warmest Colour
Blue Is The Warmest Colour18 certificate
Our Review:4 stars
MUST-SEE: French romantic drama 'La vie d'Adèle' follows a young schoolgirl whose life is changed when she falls in love with a young woman with blue hair. For the first time ever the Palme d'Or at Cannes was also officially awarded to two of the actors. Shown in French with English subtitles [watch trailer]
Starring: Léa Seydoux, Adèle Exarchopoulos, Catherine Salée, Mona Walravens
"two of the most natural, committed performances you’ll ever see... the most moving love story of the year" ~ Empire
"There is no nook or cranny that this passionate love story does not permeate" ~ Little White Lies
"Fearless, relatable and beautiful, this is one of the year’s best" ~ Total Film
Manchester Cinemas - 12 Years A Slave
12 Years A Slave15 certificate
Our Review:4 stars
MUST-SEE: Based on an incredible true story of one man's fight for survival and freedom. In the pre-Civil War United States, Solomon Northup, a free black man from upstate New York, is abducted and sold into slavery, spending 12 years struggling not only to stay alive but to retain his dignity [watch trailer]
Starring: Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender, Brad Pitt, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Giamatti
"Powerful, visceral and affecting" ~ Empire
~ Special pre-screening 7th January 2014 ~
Showing at Cineworld Didsbury:
~ General Release 31st January 2014 ~
Showing at Other cinemas in Manchester
Manchester Cinemas - Die Hard
Die Hard15 certificate
Our Review:4 stars
MUST-SEE: A cinema festive re-run of the 1988 Bruce Willis action thriller in which an NYPD officer tries to save his wife and several others who have been taken hostage by a German terrorist during a Christmas party at the Nakatomi Plaza in Los Angeles [watch trailer]
Starring: Bruce Willis, Alan Rickman, Bonnie Bedelia, Reginald VelJohnson
"Forget the inferior copycats that trailed along in its wake. Instead, enjoy the dynamic camerawork that redefined a genre" ~ Empire
"For all its moments of almost overwhelming cheese, Die Hard is still the definitive action thriller" ~ Total Film
Manchester Cinemas - Philomena
Philomena12a certificate
Our Review:4 stars
MUST-SEE: British comedy drama from Stephen Frears based on the true story of Martin Sixsmith, a Mancunian journalist who picks up the story of a woman's search for her son, who was taken away from her after she became pregnant and was forced to live in a convent [watch trailer]
Starring: Judi Dench, Steve Coogan, Sean Mahon, Michelle Fairley, Mare Winningham
" A terrific, sophisticated comedy that tackles serious issues with a lightness of touch and a spirit of steel" ~ Empire
" Blending comedy and tragedy, it secretes a potent sting" ~ Total Film
"Subtly sophisticated weepy with Coogan happily trading big thesp blows with Dame Judi" ~ Little White Lies
Manchester Cinemas - Mary Poppins
Mary PoppinsU certificate
Our Review: 4 stars

Cinema re-run to match the popularity of Saving Mr.Banks, the classic 1964 musical combines live with cartoon figures in telling the story of a super-nanny who flies in with her umbrella in response to the request of a banker's children [trailer]

Starring: Julie Andrews, Dick Van Dyke, David Tomlinson, Glynis Johns
"The colours pop and the music soars... it continues to be practically perfect in just about every way" ~ Total Film
~ Also see ~ Saving Mr Banks
Manchester Cinemas - All Is Lost
All Is Lost12a certificate
Our Review: 4 stars

Gripping Robert Redford survival drama in which, deep into a solo voyage in the Indian Ocean, a sailor wakes to find his 39-foot yacht taking on water after a collision with a shipping container left floating on the high seas. He is left finding himself staring his mortality in the face [trailer]

Starring: Robert Redford
Manchester Cinemas - Captain Phillips
Captain Phillips12a certificate
Our Review: 4 stars

Paul Greengrass's multi-layered thriller examines the true story of Captain Richard Phillips and the 2009 hijacking by Somali pirates of the US-flagged MV Maersk Alabama, the first American cargo ship to be hijacked in two hundred years [trailer]

Starring: Tom Hanks, Barkhad Abdi, Catherine Keener, Michael Chernus
" A riveting, emotionally complex and hugely intelligent dramatisation of a real-life ordeal" ~ Empire
Manchester Cinemas - American Hustle
American Hustle15 certificate
Our Review: 4 stars

Fictional crime drama from Director, David O. Russell (The Fighter and Silver Linings Playbook), set during 1978, in which a con man and his seductive British partner are forced to work for a wild FBI agent who pushes them into a world of Jersey powerbrokers and mafia. [watch trailer]

Starring: Christian Bale, Bradley Cooper, Amy Adams, Jennifer Lawrence, Jeremy Renner
" Funny, sexy and stylish as hell" ~ Total Film
~ General Release 1st January 2014 ~
Showing at Other cinemas in Manchester
Manchester Cinemas - Nebraska
Nebraska15 certificate
Our Review: 4 stars
Black & White road movie drama in which an aging, booze-addled father makes the trip from Montana to Nebraska with his estranged son in order to claim a million dollar Mega Sweepstakes Marketing prize [trailer]
Starring: Bruce Dern, Will Forte, June Squibb, Stacy Keach, Bob Odenkirk
"A charming road movie that develops into a full-blown study of life and roots" ~ Empire
Manchester Cinemas - Cinema Paradiso
Cinema ParadisoPG certificate
Our Review: 4 stars
A 25th anniversary restoration of the 1988 Oscar winner in which a filmmaker recalls his childhood, when he fell in love with the movies at his village's cinema and formed a deep friendship with the projectionist. Italian with English subtitles [trailer]
Starring: Philippe Noiret, Enzo Cannavale, Antonella Attili
"Every bit as enchanting as you remember. Molto, molto bene" ~ Empire
Manchester Cinemas - The Hunger Games
The Hunger Games ~ Catching Fire12a certificate
Our Review: 3.5 stars

The middle chapter of the sci-fi trilogy. Katniss and Peeta become targets of the Capitol after their victory in the 74th Hunger Games [trailer]

Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Woody Harrelson
"a gutsier, tougher, better round of Games" ~ Total Film
Manchester Cinemas - The Hunger Games
The Hobbit ~ The Desolation of Smaug 3D
12a certificate Our Review: 3.5 stars

The middle chapter of Peter Jackson's 3D Tolkien adaptation in which the dwarves, along with Bilbo Baggins and Gandalf, continue their quest to reclaim Erebor from Smaug [trailer]

Starring: Ian McKellen, Martin Freeman, Richard Armitage
"Middle-earth's got its mojo back" ~ Empire
Manchester Cinemas - Saving Mr Banks
Saving Mr. BanksPG certificate
Our Review: 3.5 stars
Disney cinema biopic of Mary Poppins author P. L. Travers who reflects on her difficult childhood while meeting with Walt Disney during the making of the adaptation of her novel [trailer]
Starring: Emma Thompson, Tom Hanks, Colin Farrell, Paul Giamatti
"A delicate and brilliantly acted story of overcoming the past" ~ Empire
~ Also see ~ Mary Poppins
Manchester Cinemas - Arthur Christmas
Arthur Christmas 3D U certificate
Our Review: 3.5 stars
A cinema re-run of the 2011 festive Aardman Animation in which Santa's youngest son looks to use his father's high-tech operation for an urgent mission on Christmas Eve [trailer]
Starring voices of: James McAvoy, Hugh Lawrie, Jim Broadbent, Bill Nighy
"Just delight in the supremely clever Aardman comedy" ~ Empire
Manchester Cinemas - The Muppet Christmas Carol
The Muppet Christmas CarolU certificate
Our Review: 3.5 stars
A re-run of the 1992 festive classic in which The Muppet characters tell their version of the classic Dickens tale of an old and bitter miser's redemption on Christmas Eve [trailer]
Starring Michael Caine & voices of: Dave Goelz, Frank Oz
"Vastly enjoyable despite the syrupy, soppy song bit in the middle" ~ Empire
Manchester Cinemas - The Patience Stone
The Patience Stone15 certificate
Our Review: 3.5 stars

War drama set in an unnamed Islamic country torn apart by conflict in which a young woman tends to her injured older husband. The arrival of a young soldier complicates her life even more. English subtitles [trailer]

Starring: Golshifteh Farahani, Hamid Djavdan, Hassina Burgan
"The material is given suitable punch by the outstanding Farahani" ~ Empire
Manchester Cinemas - Anchorman 2
Anchorman 2 ~ The Legend Continues15 certificate
Our Review: 3.5 stars

Sequel to the 2004 comedy and, with the 70s behind him, San Diego's top rated newsman, Ron Burgundy, returns to take New York's first 24-hour news channel by storm [trailer]

Starring: Will Ferrell, Steve Carell, Paul Rudd, David Koechner
"Bigger and broader than before" ~ Total Film
Manchester Cinemas - Fill The Void
Fill The Void
Our Review: 3.5 stars

Israeli drama "Lemale et ha'halal" in which a young Hasidic Jewish woman is pressured into an arranged levirate marriage to an older widower. Hebrew with English subtitles [trailer]

Starring: Hadas Yaron, Yiftach Klein, Irit Sheleg, Renana Raz
"A well acted and delicately told tale" ~ Empire
Manchester Cinemas - Thor
Thor ~ The Dark World 3D
12a certificate Our Review: 3.5 stars

3D Marvel sci-fi adventure in which Thor must embark on his most perilous and personal journey yet, reuniting him with Jane Foster and sacrifice everything to save us all [trailer]

Starring: Chris Hemsworth, Natalie Portman, Tom Hiddleston
"Marvel’s great run continues" ~ Empire
Manchester Cinemas - Frozen
Frozen 3D PG certificate
Our Review: 3.5 stars

Festive 3D Disney animation from the same team behind Wreck-It Ralph, in which a fearless optimist encounters Everest-like conditions, and a hilarious snowman named Olaf in a race to find her sister [watch trailer]

Starring voices of: Kristen Bell, Josh Gad, Idina Menzel
"A very decent seasonal Disney feature" ~ Little White Lies
Manchester Cinemas - Rise Of The Guardians
Rise Of The Guardians 3D
PG certificate Our Review: 3.5 stars

2012 Dreamworks Animation which sees Santa Claus, Jack Frost, The Easter Bunny, The Sandman and The Tooth Fairy team up to protect the innocence of children [trailer]

Starring voices of: Hugh Jackman, Alec Baldwin, Isla Fisher, Jude Law
"Gorgeously designed and frequently laugh-out-loud funny" ~ Empire
Manchester Cinemas - Fanny
FannyPG certificate
Our Review: 3.5 stars

French drama adapted from the second part of Pagnol’s Marseillaise trilogy, which follows on from Marius [also showing] but is now told from the perspective of Fanny. French with English subtitles [trailer]

Starring: Daniel Auteuil, Victoire Belezy, Jean-Pierre Darroussin
"Sit back and luxuriate in the film’s unhurried pleasures" ~ Total Film
~ Also see ~ Marius
Manchester Cinemas - The Butler
Lee Daniels' The Butler12a certificate
Our Review: 3.5 stars

Cinema biopic inspired by the true story of a black butler who served eight presidents at the White House during the civil rights movement, Vietnam, and other events [trailer]

Starring: Forest Whitaker, Oprah Winfrey, John Cusack, Jane Fonda
"Tough, ambitious and very moving" ~ Little White Lies
Manchester Cinemas - Mandela Long Walk To Freedom
Mandela ~ Long Walk To Freedom12a certificate
Our Review: 3.5 stars

Biopic of Nelson Mandela's life journey from his childhood in a rural village through to his inauguration as the first democratically elected president of South Africa [trailer]

Starring: Idris Elba, Naomie Harris, Terry Pheto, Jamie Bartlett
~ General Release 3rd Jan 2014 ~
Showing at Other cinemas in Manchester

Manchester Cinemas - Home Alone
Home AlonePG certificate
Our Review:

Re-run of the classic 1990 John Hughes festive comedy in which an 8-year-old boy, accidentally left behind while his family flies to France for Christmas, must defend his home against idiotic burglars [watch trailer]

Starring: Macaulay Culkin, Joe Pesci, Daniel Stern
"It is a hilarious comedy that kids will love." ~ Empire
Marius12a certificate
Our Review:

French drama adapted from the first of Pagnol’s Marseillaise trilogy, which charts the growing relationship between a man, who desires to travel the world, and a girl, who sells cockles. French with English subtitles [trailer]

Starring: Daniel Auteuil, Jean-Pierre Darroussin, Victoire Belezy
~ Also see ~ Fanny
Floating Skyscrapers18 certificate
Our Review:

Polish coming-out drama "Plynace wiezowce" which tells the story of a young man discovering his homosexuality, while his girlfriend tries to cling onto him [watch trailer]

Starring: Mateusz Banasiuk, Marta Nieradkiewicz, Bartosz Gelner
Despicable Me 2
Our Review:

The follow up to the 2010 animation and Gru, an ex-supervillain adjusting to family life, is recruited by the Anti-Villain League to help deal with a powerful new super criminal [trailer]

Starring voices of: Steve Carell, Kristen Wiig, Russell Brand, Steve Coogan
The Polar Express 3D
Our Review:

IMAX re-screening of the classic 2004 tale set on Christmas Eve, in which a doubting boy boards a magical train that's headed to the North Pole and Santa Claus' home [trailer]

Starring voices of: Tom Hanks, Chris Coppola, Michael Jeter
Turbo 3D
Our Review: 3 stars
Dreamworks 3D animation in which a freak accident might just help an everyday garden snail achieve his biggest dream: winning the Indy 500 [watch trailer]
Starring: Ryon Reynolds, Paul Giamatti, Samuel L Jackson, Michael Pena
The Railway Man15 certificate
Our Review:

Drama based on the true World War II story of Eric Lomax, a British soldier prisoned, tortured and forced to work on the construction of the Thai/Burma railway by the Japanese [trailer]

Starring: Colin Firth, Nicole Kidman, Jeremy Irvine. Stellan Skarsgård
~ Pre-screening 22nd December ~
Showing at Showcase Belle Vue
~ General Release 10th Jan 2014 ~
Showing at Other cinemas in Manchester

Carrie15 certificate
Our Review: 3 stars

A reimagining of the classic Stephen King horror about a shy girl outcast by her peers and sheltered by her deeply religious mother, who unleashes terror on her small town [watch trailer]

Starring: Chloë Grace Moretz, Julianne Moore, Gabriella Wilde
The Secret Life Of Walter MittyPG certificate
Our Review:
Remake of the 1947 comedy drama in which a day-dreamer escapes his anonymous life by disappearing into a world of fantasies filled with heroism, romance and action. [trailer]
Starring: Ben Stiller, Kristen Wiig, Shirley MacLaine, Sean Penn
Oldboy18 certificate
Our Review:
Spike Lee action film in which a man, obsessed with vengeance, sets out to find out why he was kidnapped and locked into solitary confinement for 20 years without reason [trailer]
Starring: Josh Brolin, Elizabeth Olsen, Samuel L. Jackson
Our Review:
Sylvester Stallone written thriller in which a former DEA agent moves his family to a quiet town, where he soon tangles with a local meth druglord [watch trailer]
Starring: Jason Statham, James Franco, Winona Ryder
Black NativityPG certificate
Our Review:
Festive musical in which a street-wise teen from Baltimore who has been raised by a single mother travels to New York City to spend Christmas with his estranged relatives [trailer]
Starring: Forest Whitaker, Angela Bassett, Jennifer Hudson
Free Birds 3D
Our Review: 2 stars
3D animation in which two turkeys must put aside their differences and team up to travel back in time to change history and get turkey off the Thanksgiving menu for good [trailer]
Starring voices of: Owen Wilson, Woody Harrelson, Amy Poehler
Walking With Dinosaurs 3D
Our Review: 2 stars
3D CGI family animation which allows you to see and feel what it was like when dinosaurs ruled the Earth, in a story where an Pachyrhinosaurus triumphs to become a hero [trailer]
Starring voices of: John Leguizamo, Justin Long, Karl Urban
Nativity 2 ~ Stranger In The Manger 3D
Our Review: 2 stars
The 2012 British festive film in which a worried new teacher has to juggle a pregnant wife and a class of children on a road trip to the National 'Song for Christmas' Competition [trailer]
Starring: David Tennant, Pam Ferris, Jessica Hynes, Marc Wootton
Moshi Monsters ~ The Movie
Our Review: 2 stars
Children's animation based on an online game in which the Moshi Monters must stop evil Dr. Strangeglove from pulverising the Great Moshling Egg [trailer]
Starring voices of: Keith Wickham, Emma Tate, Tom Clarke Hill
47 Ronin 3D 12a certificate
Our Review: No reviews yet
3D martial arts action movie in which a band of samurai set out to avenge the death and dishonor of their master at the hands of a ruthless shogun [watch trailer]
Starring: Keanu Reeves, Hiroyuki Sanada, Kô Shibasaki
The Harry Hill MoviePG certificate
Our Review: No reviews yet
BAFTA-winning TV comedian Harry Hill kick-starts his film career with this madcap roadtrip comedy which concerns the fate of his ailing hamster [watch trailer]
Starring: Harry Hill, Julie Walters, Matt Lucas, Simon Bird, Johnny Vegas
Justin Bieber's BelievePG certificate
Our Review: No reviews yet
Music documentary with never-seen-before footage, in which the pop star talks about his life, loves, fights and even the possibility that he could crash and burn [watch trailer]
Starring: Justin Bieber, Will I Am, Usher Raymond, Ryan Seacrest
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