UK Cinema Highlights Nov/Dec 2014

There have been so many great films out this year, including The LEGO movie, The Grand Budapest Hotel and Captain America: The Winter Soldier, and you’d be right in thinking that some of the best films have been reserved for Christmas release (new installments of The Hobbit and The Hunger Games to come!). There are some sequels as well as spin-offs and new ideas in the line-up, so let’s get started!

NB: I desperately tried to avoid a video-heavy post so soon after the Disney song list, but it’s difficult to make a decision on whether or not to see a film without having seen the trailer.

November release

14th – Nativity 3: Dude, Where’s My Donkey?

Starring: Marc Wootton, Martin Clunes, Jason Watkins, Celia Imrie, Catherine Tate, Adam Garcia

Mr Poppy is back! This time, Martin Clunes is the teacher of the St Bernadette’s children, and together they go on the search for Archie the donkey as they race to reunite Mr Sheppard (Clunes) with his fiancée Sophie (Tate) in New York. But how will Gordon Shakespeare interfere this time?

20th – The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1

Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Elizabeth Banks

Since destroying the hunger games, Katniss (Lawrence) has to fight to save Peeta (Hutcherson) and the rest of Panem.

28th – Paddington

Starring: Ben Whishaw, Julie Walters, Jim Broadbent, Peter Capaldi

The marmalade-sandwich-loving bear stars in his first feature-length film as he travels to London in search of a home. The Peruvian soon feels lost at Paddington Station until he meets the Brown family, who take him into their care after seeing, “Please look after this bear!” hung around his neck.

December release

5th – Penguins of Madagascar

Starring: Tom McGrath, Chris Miller, Christopher Knights, Benedict Cumberbatch

We knew it wouldn’t be long before the loveable, cunning penguins got their own film. They already have their own TV series on VIVA (Freeview channel 21) but obviously DreamWorks have decided that we don’t see enough of them (I’m not complaining, they are rather entertaining) and we don’t have to wait long to see it! Skipper, Private, Rico and Kowalski are back, this time to team up with another squad, led by Agent Classified (Cumberbatch). They must defeat the evil Dr. Brine and foil his plan for world destruction.

12th – The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

Starring: Martin Freeman, Richard Armitage, Ian McKellen, Benedict Cumberbatch

It wouldn’t be Christmas without the release of the next Hobbit film, would it? The third and final instalment in Peter Jackson’s trilogy sees Smaug rage terror over Lake-town, while Thorin is only interested in the reclaim of his homeland, leaving Bilbo and the dwarves to fight for themselves. Will Middle-Earth survive?

Update: I did not favour the film upon viewing, especially after the fantastic build up of the first two films.

19th – Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb

Starring: Ben Stiller, Dan Stevens, Robin Williams, Steve Coogan, Owen Wilson

Either they kept this very quiet, or I’ve lived under a rock for the past year, because I had no idea they were making a third Night at the Museum film! I thought the second film was funnier than the first one, but I’m not sure if they’ve exhausted all their jokes, and I don’t really see how a further film could add to the storyline, but it could work. As the tablet of Ahkmenrah begins to die out, Larry must go globetrotting with the help of Sir Lancelot (Stevens) to save the magic.

All information correct at time of writing

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