DVD/VOD Releases – September 2015

A Royal Night Out (12)

Drama | Romance | Thriller

Dir. Julian Jarrold, UK, 2015, 97 mins

Cast: Sarah Gadon, Bel Powley, Jack Reynor, Rupert Everett, Emily Watson, Roger Allam

VE Day, 1945. Across the world, people are celebrating the end of the war. London overflows with celebration and excess. Two teenage sisters are allowed out at night for the first time to join the party. They have an amazing adventure; it’s like a first date. And they get back home far too late.

Home is Buckingham Palace. Our two teenagers are Princess Margaret and the future queen of England, Elizabeth II. Based on untold true events, A Royal Night Out is the heart warming and charming tale of the Queen as you’ve never seen her before.

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Bait (15)

Horror

Dir. Dominic Brunt, UK,  2015, 86 mins

Cast: Victoria Smurfit, Jonathan Slinger, Rula Lenska

Dominic Brunt’s impressive second feature after the beloved ‘Emmerdale’ actor took the genre by storm with BEFORE DAWN is a tense female revenge saga – a frightening true-life crime thriller graced by a scalpel-sharp screenplay and extraordinary performances. Two women who dream of opening their own café in a work-depressed northern town go to the wrong person for a loan in this chilling allegory of the economic brutality independent businesses face within the austerity-led banking system. Unable to meet the outrageous payment demands, the hardened duo must find it within themselves to take pitiless, bloody retribution on their malicious aggressor.

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Fast & Furious 7 (12)

Action | Crime | Thriller

Dir. James Wan, Japan,US, 2014, 137 mins

Cast: Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Dwayne Johnson

Continuing the global exploits in the unstoppable franchise built on speed, Vin Diesel, Paul Walker and Dwayne Johnson lead the returning cast of Fast & Furious 7. James Wan directs this chapter of the hugely successful series that also welcomes back favorites Michelle Rodriguez, Jordana Brewster, Tyrese Gibson, Chris “Ludacris” Bridges, Elsa Pataky and Lucas Black. They are joined by international action stars new to the franchise including Jason Statham, Djimon Hounsou, Tony Jaa, Ronda Rousey, Nathalie Emmanuel and Kurt Russell.

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Girlhood (15)

Drama | World

Dir. Celine Sciamma, France, 2014, 113 mins, subtitles

Cast:  Karidja Touré, Assa Sylla, Lindsay Karamoh

Raw, raucous but tender look at a group of black high school students living in the tough banlieues of Paris.

Oppressed by her family setting, dead-end school prospects and the boys law in the neighborhood, Marieme starts a new life after meeting a group of 3 free-spirited girls. She changes her name, her dress code, and quits school to be accepted in the gang, hoping that this will be a way to freedom.

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Maxine Peake As Hamlet (12)

Drama

Dirs. Sarah Frankcom & Margaret Williams, UK, 2015, 180 mins

Cast: Maxine Peake, John Shrapnel, Barbara Marten

From its sell-out run at Manchester’s Royal Exchange Theatre comes this unique and critically acclaimed production of Shakespeare’s tragic Hamlet.

In this stripped-back, fresh and fast-paced version, BAFTA nominee Maxine Peake creates a Hamlet for now, giving a performance hailed as “delicately ferocious” by the Guardian and “a milestone Hamlet” by the Manchester Evening News. Hamlet is Shakespeare’s most iconic work. The play explodes with big ideas and is the ultimate story of loyalty, love, betrayal, murder and madness.

Hamlet’s father is dead and Denmark has crowned a new king. Consumed by grief, Hamlet struggles to exact revenge, with devastating consequences. This groundbreaking stage production, directed by Sarah Frankcom, was the Royal Exchange’s fastest-selling show in a decade. Alongside Maxine Peake as the eponymous prince, a number of other roles, including Polonius and Rosencrantz, are also played by women.

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Rosewater (15)

Biography | Drama

Dir. Jon Stewart, US, 2014, 103 mins

Cast: Gael Garcia Bernal, Kim Bodnia, Claire Foy, Dimitri Leonidas

The directorial debut of Jon Stewart, whose Comedy Central show, “The Daily Show,” has won 18 Primetime Emmy Awards. This adaptation tells the true story of Iranian Canadian journalist, Maziar Bahari, who was detained in Iran in 2009 while attempting to cover the presidential election, and is based on the memoir Then They Came for Me by Maziar Bahari and Aimee Molloy. Maziar Bahari (Gael García Bernal) was detained and brutally interrogated at Evin Prison for more than 100 days whilst his pregnant fiancée back in London campaigned tirelessly for his release. Bahari was usually blindfolded when being interrogated and the sole distinguishing feature of his interrogator was that he smelled of rosewater. His imprisonment was connected to an interview he conducted on The Daily Show in 2009; Shortly before he was arrested, Bahari filmed an interview with The Daily Show’s Jason Jones, who had travelled to Iran to do a series of satirical pre-election reports about the Iranian people entitled “Behind the Veil.”

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Unfriended (15)

Horror | Thriller

Dir. Levan Gabriadze, US, 2014, 82 mins

Cast: Shelley Hennig, Moses Jacob Storm, Renee Olstead, Will Peltz, Jacob Wysocki, Courtney Halverson, Heather Sossaman

While video chatting one night, six high school friends receive a Skype message from a classmate who killed herself exactly one year ago. At first they think it’s a prank, but when the girl starts revealing the friends’ darkest secrets, they realize they are dealing with something out of this world, something that wants them dead. Told entirely from a young girl’s computer desktop, Unfriended redefines ‘found footage’ for a new generation of teens.

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Age of Adaline, The (12)

Drama | Romance

Dir. Lee Toland Krieger, US, 2015, 110 mins

Cast:  Blake Lively, Michiel Huisman, Kathy Baker, Amanda Crew, Harrison Ford, Ellen Burstyn

After miraculously remaining 29 years old for almost eight decades, Adaline Bowman has lived a solitary existence, never allowing herself to get close to anyone who might reveal her secret. But a chance encounter with charismatic philanthropist Ellis Jones reignites her passion for life and romance. When a weekend with his parents threatens to uncover the truth, Adaline makes a decision that will change her life forever.

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Avengers: Age Of Ultron, The (12)

Action | Adventure | Fantasy | Sci-Fi

Dir. Joss Whedon, US, 2015, 142 mins

Cast: Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo

When Tony Stark tries to jumpstart a dormant peacekeeping program, things go awry and Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, including Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, The Incredible Hulk, Black Widow and Hawkeye, are put to the ultimate test as the fate of the planet hangs in the balance. As the villainous Ultron emerges, it is up to The Avengers to stop him from enacting his terrible plans, and soon uneasy alliances and unexpected action pave the way for a global adventure.

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Building Jerusalem (12)

Documentary | Sport

Dir. James Erskine, UK,  2015, 90 mins

Cast (as themselves) : Jonny Wilkinson, Clive Woodward, Martin Johnson, Matt Dawson

22nd November 2003: The Rugby World Cup Final.

After six weeks of gruelling competition, England is battling reigning champions Australia. The two teams are inseparable after eighty minutes: the game drags deep into extra time: just two minutes are left on the clock.

England rumble to within 40 yards of the posts. The ball is sent spiralling back to Jonny Wilkinson, the golden boy of English rugby, in a split second he drop kicks for goal and a chance for sporting immortality….

From the producer of Oscar-winning ‘Man on Wire’ and ‘Senna’, Victoria Gregory, and Emmy-nominated Director, James Erskine, Building Jerusalem combines scintillating match action, extraordinary original interviews with the key players including Jonny Wilkinson, Clive Woodward, Martin Johnson and Matt Dawson, with never-before-seen behind the scenes and match footage.

It is an astonishing story of pressure, expectation and courage, tracing the roots of success back to the professionalization of the game in the 90s, culminating in that glorious World Cup campaign of 2003 that turned Woodward’s poisoned chalice into a golden cup.

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Canal, The (15)

Horror | Mystery | Thriller

Dir. Ivan Kavanagh, Ireland, 2014, 92 mins

Cast: Rupert Evans, Antonia Campbell-Hughes, Hannah Hoekstra

Cinema Archivist David Williams lives with his wife, Alice, and their 5-year-old son, Billy. All seems well until David begins to suspect that Alice is cheating on him. His anxiety is then compounded by a bizarre coincidence at work: cataloguing a film-reel from 1902, he learns that his home was the site of a brutal series of murders by a man named William Jackson, who slew his wife for being unfaithful and drowned both of their children in the nearby canal. As David’s suspicions grow, a shadowy figure of a man, who resembles Jackson, starts to appear to him and David becomes convinced that this “evil supernatural presence” that inhabits his house, never ever wants him or his family to leave.

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CITIZENFOUR (15)

Documentary

Dir. Laura Poitras, Germany/US, 2014, 114 mins, some subtitles

Cast (as themselves): Edward Snowden, Jacob Appelbaum, Julian Assange

In January 2013, filmmaker Laura Poitras was several years into the making of a film about abuses of national security in post-9/11 America when she started receiving encrypted e-mails from someone identifying himself as “citizen four,” who was ready to blow the whistle on the massive covert surveillance programs run by the NSA and other intelligence agencies.  In June 2013, she and reporter Glenn Greenwald flew to Hong Kong for the first of many meetings with the man who turned out to be Edward Snowden. She brought her camera with her. The film that resulted from this series of tense encounters is absolutely unique in the history of cinema: a 100% real-life thriller unfolding minute by minute before our eyes.

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Hard to be a God (Trudno byt bogom) (18)

Drama | Sci-fi | World

Dir. Aleksei German, Russia, 2013, 177 mins, subtitles

Cast: Gali Abaydulov, Yuriy Ashikhmin, Remigijus Bilinskas

A group of scientists visits the distant planet Arkanar, and discovers a society still trapped in its own medieval era. Unable to interfere with the course of its history, they can only watch in mounting horror as all sparks of intelligent and independent thought are mercilessly snuffed out by Arkanar’s cruel rulers. Will they remain enmired in their squalid existence for ever, or can the visitors subtly nudge the more open-minded in the right direction? Truly, it’s hard to be a god.

Legendary Russian sci-fi authors Arkady and Boris Strugatsky (whose Roadside Picnic was filmed as Stalker by Andrei Tarkovsky) wrote the source novel, and adapting it was director Aleksei German’s dream project for decades. It would take six years of shooting, a further six of post-production and a posthumous premiere before his masterpiece was finally unveiled.

But masterpiece it is: a visually astonishing, almost tactile recreation of an unnervingly recognisable alternative universe, drenched in blood, mud and the tears of the oppressed.

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Salt Of The Earth (12)

Documentary | Biography

Dirs. Juliano Ribeiro Salgado, Wim Wenders, France/Brazil/Italy, 2014, 110 mins

Cast: Sebastião Salgado, Wim Wenders, Juliano Ribeiro Salgado

For the last 40 years, the photographer Sebastião Salgado has been travelling through the continents, in the footsteps of an ever-changing humanity. He has witnessed some of the major events of our recent history; international conflicts, starvation and exodus. He is now embarking on the discovery of pristine territories, of wild fauna and flora, and of grandiose landscapes as part of a huge photographic project which is a tribute to the planet’s beauty.

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Big Game (12)

Action | Adventure

Dir. Jalmari Helander, Finland/UK/Germany, 2014, 110 mins

Cast:  Samuel L. Jackson, Onni Tommila, Ray Stevenson, Jim Broadbent, Felicity Huffman

When Air Force One is shot down by terrorists leaving the President of the United States stranded in the wilderness, there is only one person around who can save him – a 13-year old boy called Oskari.

In the forest on a hunting mission to prove his maturity to his kinsfolk, Oskari had been planning to track down a deer, but instead discovers the most powerful man on the planet in an escape pod.

With the terrorists closing in to capture their own “Big Game” prize, the unlikely duo must team up to escape their hunters. As anxious Pentagon officials observe the action via satellite feed, it is up to the President and his new side-kick to prove themselves and survive the most extraordinary 24 hours of their lives.

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Goob, The (18)

Drama

Dir. Guy Myhill, UK, 2014, 84 mins

Cast:  Hannah Spearritt, Sienna Guillory, Marama Corlett

Young Goob, 16 years old, returns home to his mother where he grew up in the countryside, between a small restaurant and a field of pumpkins. His mother’s new companion and Goob don’t get along. This summer Goob will mature in many ways, dealing with a girl in the stock-car circuit, a gay cousin who dances, and problems with a seasonal woman fieldworker.

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Infini (15)

Horror | Sci-fi | Thriller

Dir. Shane Abbess, Australia, 2015, 110 mins

Cast: Daniel MacPherson, Grace Huang, Luke Hemsworth, Luke Ford

An elite Search and Rescue team embark on a mission to an off-world mining-facility in order to prevent a global threat and rescue soldier Whit Carmichael, the lone survivor of a biological outbreak.

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John Wick (15)

Action | Thriller

Dir. Chad Stahelski, US, 2015, 101 mins

Cast: Keanu Reeves, Michael Nyqvist, Alfie Allen

When sadistic young thugs senselessly attack John Wick – a brilliantly lethal ex-assassin – they have no idea that they’ve just awakened the boogeyman. With New York City as his bullet-riddled playground, Wick embarks on a merciless rampage, hunting down his adversaries with the skill and ruthlessness that made him an underworld legend.

 

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New Girlfriend, The (15)

Drama | World

Dir. Francois Ozon, France, 2014, 105 mins, subtitles

Cast:  Romain Duris, Anaïs Demoustier, Raphaël Personnaz

Claire (Anaïs Demoustier) is grieving the loss of her lifetime best friend, who has left behind a husband, David (Romain Duris), and a newborn baby. On an unannounced visit, a shocked Claire discovers David nuzzling his infant while wearing the clothes of his dead wife. Unfazed, David explains that his former wife had always been aware of this particular idiosyncrasy. In time, Claire begins to overcome her initial reaction, and helps David to create his own female persona to inhabit.

In this, his latest cinematic offering, Ozon has delivered a well-paced psychological drama that investigates grief and identity. The New Girlfriend is also a funny, good-natured poke at the mores and peccadilloes of France’s bourgeoisie in a film that effortlessly fuses the best of Hitchcock and Almodóvar. (Source: www.affrenchfilmfestival.org)

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Pitch Perfect 2 (12)

Comedy | Music

Dir. Elizabeth Banks, US, 2015

Cast: Anna Kendrick, Rebel Wilson, Hailee Steinfeld

Anna Kendrick and Rebel Wilson return in this musical comedy sequel following the fortunes of an all-girl a cappella singing group. The film follows The Barden Bellas as they enter an international singing competition that a group from the US have yet to win. Can they impress the judges enough to beat their competitors? The cast also includes Elizabeth Banks, Hailee Steinfeld, Brittany Snow and Katey Sagal.

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52 Tuesdays (15)

Drama | Family

Dir. Sophie Hyde, Australia, 2013, 114 mins

Cast: Tilda Cobham-Hervey, Del Herbert-Jane, Mario Spate

Billie’s journey to independence is accelerated when her mother Jane informs her she is going to live her future life as a man. Although Billie is going to move out and live with her father, every Tuesdays will be sacred as a space where both Billie and Jane/James can spend time together.

Winning Best Director at Sundance and the Crystal Bear at Berlin International Film Festival and shot in real time, every Tuesday for one year – exposing both characters’ transformations – 52 Tuesdays is a remarkable and enthralling experiment in storytelling.

Filmed one day, every week, for a year.

Trailer     Official Site

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Catch Me Daddy (15)

Thriller

Dir. Daniel Wolfe & Matthew Wolfe, UK, 2014, 112 mins, some subtitles

Cast: Sameena Jabeen Ahmed, Conor McCarron, Gary Lewis, Wasim Zahir

A highly original portrayal of Love on the Run, a compelling blend of modern-day Western and visceral chase-thriller, set against a uniquely British backdrop.  

A universal tale of family conflict and teenage rebellion, ‘Catch Me Daddy’ follows Laila, a girl on the run from her family, hiding out in the badlands of West Yorkshire with her drifter boyfriend Aaron.  When her brother arrives in town with a gang of bounty hunters in tow, she is forced to flee for her life and faces her darkest night.

Trailer     Official Site

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L'Eclisse (R/I) (PG)

Drama

Dir. Michelangelo Antonioni,France, Italy, 1962, 126 mins, Subtitles

Cast: Monica Vitti, Alain Delon, Francisco Rabal

Winner of the Special Jury Prize at the Cannes Film Festival in 1962, it was the final film in Antonioni’s informal trilogy on contemporary malaise (following L’Avventura and La Notte), a series of films that redefined the concept of narrative cinema.

Filmed in sumptuous black and white, and full of scenes of lush, strange beauty, it tells the story of Vittoria (the beautiful Monica Vitti – L’Avventura, La Notte, Red Desert – Antonioni’s partner at the time), a young woman who leaves her older lover (Francisco Rabal – Viridiana, The Holy Innocents, Goya in Bordeaux), then drifts into a relationship with a confident, ambitious young stockbroker (Alain Delon – Le Samourai, Rocco and his Brothers, Le Cercle Rouge). But this base narrative is the starting point for much, much more, including an analysis of the city as a place of estrangement and alienation and an implicit critique of colonialism.

Using the architecture of Rome – old and new – as a backdrop for this doomed affair, Antonioni achieves the apotheosis of his style in this return to the theme that preoccupied him the most: the difficulty of forming true connections amidst the meaninglessness of the modern world. The final shot remains one of the greatest endings in cinema. The film features stunning performances from two icons of 60s cinema: the seductive Monica Vitti and the elegant, chiseled Alain Delon.

Trailer     Official Site

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La Famille Belier (15)

Comedy | Drama | Music

Dir. Eric Lartigau, France/Belgium,  2014, 106 mins, Subtitles

Cast: Karin Viard, François Damiens, Eric Elmosnino

The Béliers are ordinary people : Rodolphe and Gigi are married, have two children and run their farm for a living. Ordinary people? Well, almost… since three of them, Dad, Mum and their son Quentin, are deaf. Which is not the case of the boy’s big sister, Paula. And not only can she speak but her music teacher scouts her beautiful voice as well. He offers her to sit for the entrance exam of the Maîtrise de Radio France, a vocal elite choir in Paris. Her parents, who rely on her as their ears and mouth in the outside world, take the news badly. Paula, who hates the idea of betraying her parents and her brother, goes through a painful dilemma.

Trailer     Official Site

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Man Up (15)

Comedy | Romance

Dir. Ben Palmer, UK,France, 2015, 88 mins, subtitles

Cast:  Lake Bell, Simon Pegg, Ophelia Lovibond

A 34 year old single woman, Nancy, hung-over again, exhausted by the endless fruitless set ups by her friends, traveling across London to toast another 10 years of her parent’s successful happy magical marriage runs in with a 40 year old divorcee, Jack, who mistakes her for his 24 year old blind date. Nancy, deciding to go with it, happens to hop on the most chaotic yet hilarious journey of her life which neither of them will ever forget. There is drinking, truths, an old stalker class mate with long a standing crush, lost divorce papers, lost hopes, competitive indoor sports and yeah Jack finding out the truth that Nancy isn’t his blind date. ‘Man Up’ a romantic comedy about taking chances, finding about being yourself, making decisions and rolling with the consequences.

Trailer     Official Site

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Moomins On The Riviera (U)

Animation | Comedy| Family

Dirs. Xavier Picard & Hanna Hemila, Finland/France, 2014, 80 mins

Cast (voices): Tracy Ann Oberman, Nathaniel Parker, Ruth Gibson, Russell Tovey

In search of adventures, the Moomins, Snorkmaiden and Little My set sail for the French Riviera. After a perilous journey, they reach their dream destination where Snorkmaiden is dazzled by the attentions of a playboy leaving Moomin consumed by jealousy. When Moominpappa befriends an aristocrat and adopts the name ‘de Moomin’, an exasperated Moominmamma retreats to the calm of their trusty old boat, to wait for her family to come to their senses and to remember their motto: “Live in peace, plant potatoes and dream.”

Trailer     Official Site

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Narcopolis (15)

Mystery | Sci-fi | Thriller

Dir. Justin Trefgarne, UK, 2014, 96 mins

Cast: Elliot Cowan, Elodie Yung, Jonathan Pryce, James Callis, Harry Lloyd

A fast thriller set in a futuristic city where the manufacture and use of all recreational drugs is legal. An elite unit, created by an over-stretched police force, works to keep the black market dealers off the streets and the licensed drug companies rich.

When Frank Grieves, police officer and former addict, is called to investigate an unidentifiable corpse, he finds himself pulled into a world infected with corruption and in which the only person he can rely on is himself.

Trailer     Official Site

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Ruth & Alex (12A)

Drama

Dir. Richard Loncraine, US, 2015, 119 min

Cast: Diane Keaton, Morgan Freeman, Cynthia Nixon

A long-time married couple who’ve spent their lives together in the same New York apartment become overwhelmed by personal and real estate-related issues when they plan to move away.

Trailer      Official Site

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