Saoirse Ronan plays a girl in love in How I Live Now
Select film reviews
- Chris Morgan
12 Years a Slave
Historical drama based on the eponymous 1853 autobiography by Solomon Northup. Directed by Steve McQueen (Hunger, Shame). In pre-Civil War America, Solomon Northup (Chiwetel Ejiofor), a free black man from upstate New York, is abducted and sold into slavery. Facing cruelty - personified by a malevolent slave owner (Michael Fassbender) - as well as unexpected kindnesses, Solomon struggles not only to stay alive, but to retain his dignity. In the 12th year of his unforgettable odyssey, Solomon's chance meeting with a Canadian abolitionist (Brad Pitt) will forever alter his life. "Stark, visceral and unrelenting, 12 Years a Slave is not just a great film but a necessary one," Guardian reviewer Paul MacInnes wrote. Rainbow Cinemas (14A).
Romantic comedy written and directed by Richard Curtis (Notting Hill, Four Weddings and a Funeral) and starring Domhnall Gleeson (Six Shooter, Boy Eats Girl), Rachel McAdams (The Notebook, Wedding Crashers) and Bill Nighy (Love Actually, Shaun of the Dead). On his 21st birthday, Tim Lake's (Gleeson) father (Nighy) tells him the family secret - all the males in their family are able to travel back in time. He can go back to any moment and live it over and over again until he gets it “right.” He decides to go back in time to see if he can win the girl of his dreams (Rachel McAdams), but he finds out that not everything can be fixed, and that time travel doesn't come without consequences. Rainbow Cinemas (14A).
All is Lost
Survival film written and directed by J.C. Chandor (Margin Call). While on a solo expedition on a yacht in the Indian Ocean, a resourceful sailor (Robert Redford) wakes to find his boat taking on water after a collision. With his navigation equipment and radio disabled, he's suddenly thrown into the path of a violent storm. After patching the breached hull, he weathers the tempest, but just barely. Using only a sextant and nautical maps to chart his progress, the sailor's hopes currents will eventually take him into the path of a passing vessel. But as his meager supplies dwindle, he soon finds himself staring his mortality in the face. "A genuine nail-biter, scrupulously made and fully involving, elemental in its simplicity," Village Voice reviewer Alan Scherstuhl wrote. Hyland Cinema (PG).
Biopic thriller directed by Paul Greengrass (The Bourne Supremacy, United 93). An examination of the 2009 hijacking of the US container ship Maersk Alabama by a crew of Somali pirates. The film focuses on the relationship between the Alabama's commanding officer, Captain Richard Phillips (Tom Hanks), and his Somali counterpart, Muse (Barkhad Abdi). Set on an incontrovertible collision course off the coast of Somalia, both men will find themselves paying the human toll for economic forces outside of their control. "Hanks' dedication and abilities utilized are the same tools used in his first Oscar-winning performance in Philadelphia," Awards Circuit reviewer Clayton Davis wrote. Hyland Cinema (14A).
Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2
Computer animated comic science fiction film and sequel to 2009 film of the same name. Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 picks up where the first movie left off. Inventor Flint Lockwood's genius is finally being recognized. He's invited by his idol Chester V to join The Live Corp Company, where the best and brightest inventors in the world create technologies for the betterment of mankind. Chester's right-hand gal - and one of his greatest inventions - is Barb, an orangutan with a human brain, who is devious, manipulative and likes to wear lipstick. It's always been Flint's dream to be recognized as a great inventor, but everything changes when he discovers that his most infamous machine - which turns water into food) - is still operating and is now creating food-animal hybrids. With the fate of humanity in his hands, Chester sends Flint and his friends on a dangerously delicious mission - to battle hungry tacodiles, shrimpanzees, apple pie-thons, double bacon cheespiders and other food creatures to save the world again. Rainbow Cinemas (G).
Dramatic comedy based on the French-Canadian film Starbuck. David Wozniak (Vince Vaughn), a meat delivery truck driver in his forties who works for his father, finds out years after making anonymous donations to a fertility clinic that he has fathered 533 children. He becomes aware of it when 142 of them file a lawsuit to reveal his identity. His friend Brett (Chris Pratt), a former lawyer, works on his defense and gets him a package of photos and information about the children. Curious, David begins to find out who they are and gets involved in his children's lives without telling them who he is. Rainbow Cinemas (PG).
Computer animated fantasy epic based on the Hans Christian Andersen's The Snow Queen. Co-directed by Chris Buck and Jennifer Lee. When a prophecy traps a kingdom in eternal winter, Anna (Kristen Bell), a fearless optimist, teams up with extreme mountain man Kristoff (Jonathan Groff) and his sidekick reindeer Sven on an epic journey to find Anna’s sister Elsa (Idina Menzel), the Snow Queen, and put an end to her icy spell. Encountering mystical trolls, a funny snowman named Olaf, Everest-like extremes and magic at every turn, Anna and Kristoff battle the elements in a race to save the kingdom from destruction. Rainbow Cinemas (G).
Science fiction drama directed by Alfonso Cuarón (Children of Men, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban). Dr. Ryan Stone (Sandra Bullock) is a brilliant medical engineer on her first shuttle mission with veteran astronaut Matt Kowalsky (George Clooney). But on a seemingly routine spacewalk, disaster strikes. The shuttle is destroyed, leaving Stone and Kowalsky completely alone - tethered to nothing but each other, spiraling out into the blackness. The deafening silence tells them they have lost any link to Earth, and any chance for rescue. As fear turns to panic, every gulp of air eats away at what little oxygen is left. But the only way home may be to go further out into the terrifying expanse of space. "Cuarón shows things that cannot be but, miraculously, are, in the fearful, beautiful reality of the space world above our world. If the film past is dead, Gravity shows us the glory of cinema's future. It thrills on so many levels. And because Cuarón is a movie visionary of the highest order, you truly can't beat the view," Time reviewer Richard Corliss wrote. Rainbow Cinemas (PG).
Dramatic action film directed by Gary Fleder (The Express, Things to Do in Denver When You're Dead). Widowed DEA agent Phil Broker (Jason Statham) retires to a small town for the sake of his 10-year-old daughter Maddy (Izabela Vidovic) and to escape his troubled past. He soon realizes he chose the wrong town when his path crosses with a band of drug traffickers, led by Gator Bodine (James Franco), a meth kingpin who puts Broker and his daughter in harm's way. Broker springs back into action to save Maddy and the town from Bodine's clutches. Rainbow Cinemas (14A).
How I Live Now
Drama based on Meg Rosoff's 2004 novel of the same name. Directed by Kevin MacDonald (The Last King of Scotland, Marley). Daisy (Saoirse Ronan), a teenager from New York, is sent to the English countryside for the summer to stay with cousins. She falls madly in love with Eddie (George MacKay) - her older cousin - when suddenly her perfect summer is blown apart by the outbreak of a 21st century world war. Along with Eddie's younger siblings, Isaac (Tom Holland) and Piper (Harley Bird), they are isolated and forced to fend for themselves. When the group is violently separated, Daisy must embark on a terrifying journey in order to be reunited with the boy she loves. Eddie is never far from Daisy's mind, but as her quest becomes more desperate, the prospect that she may never find him haunts her soul. Hyland Cinema (14A).
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire
Science fiction adventure film based on Suzanne Collins' 2009 novel Catching Fire and second installment in the Hunger Games film series. After winning the Hunger Games, Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) and Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) return home to get ready to go on a Victory Tour of all 12 Districts. Before the tour, President Snow (Donald Sutherland) pays Katniss a visit, warning her that he knows she's faking her love for Peeta. During the tour, the districts begin to rebel against the Capitol, prompting Snow to decide that there will be another Hunger Games, this time to include two previous winners from each district, hoping that Katniss will be killed. As the only female winner from District 12, Katniss is chosen, but when Hamish (Woody Harrelson) is selected as the male contestant, Peeta volunteers. As they get ready for games, Hamish advises Katniss and Peeta to team up with some of the other 24 participants if they want a chance of surviving. Rainbow Cinemas (PG).
Thor: The Dark World
Superhero film, sequel to Thor (2011) and eighth installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. In ancient times, Dark Elves battled the forces of Asgard in an attempt to detonate the Aether, a force of infinite destructive power. The surviving Dark Elves, led by the villaneous Malekith (Christopher Eccleston), were sentenced to centuries-long slumber. Astrophysicist Jane Foster's (Natalie Portman) body unwittingly becomes the Aether’s host, making her the target of the newly revived Malekith. Thor (Chris Hemsworth), who is due to succeed his father Odin (Anthony Hopkins) as king of Asgard, spirits Jane away to the realm, where his coronation is put on hold. The Dark Elves' plot to activate the Aether could have devastating consequences for all Nine Realms, including Earth. Thor turns to his treacherous, power-hungry brother, Loki (Tom Hiddleston) - who was imprisoned after a foiled scheme - when it becomes clear the estranged siblings have to join forces in order to stop Malekith. Rainbow Cinemas (PG).