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What’s Worth Watching – February 2013

ThisIs40

Welcome to February… Spring! St. Bridget! Valentines Day! BAFTAS! Oscars! A leap year! No wait, no leap year this year, ah…

Looking through the listings below you’ll notice that February is packed full of releases with 26 new films coming our way, some of which we touched upon in the latest podcast (click here to give it a listen) but most of which are brand new. After the month of heavy-hitters we had last month (Django, Lincoln, Zero Dark Thirty) it’s more of a mixed bag this time round with most of the awards contenders now out of the way ahead of Oscar night on February 24th.

Anyway, as we did last month we have a dated list of all the films coming to Irish cinemas this month along with links to their IMDB pages and any existing Spooool.ie coverage. Below them we’ve picked out five that we feel will be worth your tenner at the cinema. And yes I know we’re skipping out some obscure Bollywood releases that will hit Cineworld but our market research has shown that none of you care about them. So there.

Irish Cinema Release Dates – February 2013

14/15 February 2013

22 February 2013

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#1 – Bullhead (Rundskop)
Feb 1st

bullhead

The 2012 Oscar nominee from Belgium finally arrives on UK and Irish screens. In the year since the film lost to A Seperation, we’ve been introduced to star Matthias Schoenaerts in his stunningly raw performance opposite Marion Cottilard in last year’s Rust and Bone (our review). Bullhead looks like it may be more of the same and we’re suckers for subtitles and muscles so will be happy to catch it.

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#2 – Wreck-It Ralph
Feb 8th

Wreck-It-Ralph

The big Disney film to take the kids to for the mid-term break. Except this one is a big old homage to the computer game arcades of the 1980s and 90s so the kids won’t really get half of the references. Disney also gave us the excellent Frankenweenie last October and so should be on a good run. Bring on the 16-bit LOLs!

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#3 – This is 40
Feb 14th

ThisIs402

Ah Judd Apatow. Love him or hate him, the man has a good eye for comedic talent (HBO’s “Girls” probably wouldn’t have been made without his clout) and everyone in Hollywood seems to love him. This is 40 is the pseudo-follow-up to the perfectly-formed 2007 Hollywood comedy Knocked Up – except this time we’re focusing in on Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann’s family as they approach the landmark 40 candles in the cake.

Considering Mann is Apatow’s real-life wife and their two children play exaggerated versions of themselves, it’s not hard to work out that Rudd is Judd Apatow. Or something. Anyway it means these characters feel very familiar and what they’re going through seems pretty real. Despite that long-running time, the stunning list of names in the supporting cast mean a check-in with the pseudo-Apatows is always worthwhile. And yes this is out on the same day as Die Hard 5, but I doubt we need to convince you to go and see that…

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#4 – No
Feb 8th

4No

We also touched upon No in the podcast a little bit and as one of 2013’s foreign-language film Oscar nominees, it’s likely to be very worthwhile. The film deals with the 1988 elections in Chile and for authenticity’s sake the film-makers opted to use (and allow me to paste from wikipedia here…) “low definition, 3/4′ Sony U-matic magnetic tape, which was widely used by television news in Chile in the 80s.” This kind of effect makes for an interesting viewing experience (check out the trailer below) but Gael Garcia-Bernal is always good value, and all the moreso when he’s allowed to speak in his mother-tongue. Páraic thinks this may be his best work since the Gillette ad campaign.

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#5 – Mama
Feb 22nd

5Mama

A few weeks ago Jessica Chastain held the rare honour of being the star of the first and second most popular films at the US box office, for Zero Dark Thirty and for the new horror film Mama. As far as I can work out that’s never happened before but is a testament to Chastain’s growing popularity over the last 18 months ago from virtual unknown to a name that can carry two films. We’ve been starved of a great big American horror film for some time now, and the 61% Rotten Tomatoes “fresh” rating currently being given to this suggests we may be waiting a little longer, but the “Guillermo Del Toro presents” tagline, Chastain’s presence and the very-creepy-but-gives-lots-away trailer suggests this should be a fun Friday night frightfest.

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Nigel

Nigel loves stupid films almost as much as he likes clever films. He'll watch anything but is usually drawn to documentaries, North American independent films, Irish cinema and gung-ho, balls-to-the-walls Hollywood blockbusters. Here's what he's been watching.