Highlights this month include: the Gaylene Preston film about the Christchurch earthquakes, ‘Hope and Wire’; the fun movie of the stage musical ‘Sunshine on Leith’; the complete third season’s of ‘Homeland’ & ‘Call the Midwife’; the Scarlett Johansson art-house feature ‘Under the Skin’; and the acclaimed BAFTA-nominated drama ‘The Selfish Giant’.
Under the skin.
“An alien entity inhabits the earthly form of a seductive young woman who combs the Scottish highways in search of the human prey it is here to plunder. It lures its isolated and forsaken male victims into an otherworldly dimension where they are stripped and consumed. But life in all its complexity starts to change the alien. It begins to see itself as ‘she’, as human, with tragic and terrifying consequences. UNDER THE SKIN is about seeing ourselves through alien eyes. UNDER THE SKIN, starring Scarlett Johansson, is Jonathan Glazer’s critically-acclaimed third feature after Sexy Beast and Birth.” (Product description from Amazon.co.uk)
Sunshine on Leith.
“Dexter Fletcher directs this cinematic adaptation of the acclaimed stage musical featuring the music of Scottish band The Proclaimers. Returning home from their most recent stint in Afghanistan, Davy (George MacKay) and Ally (Kevin Guthrie) have a new appreciation for life after witnessing the horrors of war first-hand. While Ally plans his proposal to Davy’s sister Liz (Freya Mavor), Davy falls for Yvonne (Antonia Thomas) and the two couples come together in time for Liz’s parent’s wedding anniversary, but not everything is plain sailing for love in Leith…” (Product description from Amazon.co.uk)
Hope and wire.
“”In this gripping drama set during the Christchurch earthquakes it’s the aftershocks that run the deepest, bringing to the surface the things that truly matter, the lies we tell ourselves, the compassion of the many and the selfishness of the few. Hope & Wire show us at our most desperate and our most hopeful. Echoing true events with a candid and unflinching eye, telling a universal story of family, hope and triumph against the odds.”–Publisher description.” (Syndetics summary)
Edge of tomorrow.
“Tom Cruise and Emily Blunt star in this sci-fi action feature based on the light novel ‘All You Need Is Kill’ by Hiroshi Sakurazaka. New Special Forces recruit William ‘Bill’ Cage (Cruise) is equipped with a powered exoskeleton and sent on a mission to fight a fierce alien race known as Mimics, who are ultimately unstoppable. Cage soon dies in combat but, caught in a time loop, he finds himself very much alive and once again facing the same battle. This process repeats itself several times but with every fight Cage grows stronger and more adept. He meets tough warrior Rita Vrataski (Blunt) and together they try to bring down the enemy once and for all.” (Product description from Amazon.co.uk)
Call the midwife. Series three.
“Based on the memoirs of Jennifer Worth, Call the Midwife follows Nurse Jenny Lee and the midwives from Nonnatus House convent as they provide the best possible care to the expectant mothers of Poplar. Series 3 sees Chummy, PC Noakes and baby Freddy back in the East End; Sister Bernadette – now known as Shelagh since leaving the convent – preparing for her wedding to Dr Turner; and Jenny facing some tough personal and professional challenges. At Christmas, when an unexploded World War II bomb is found under a warehouse close to Nonnatus House, the nuns and dozens of local families find themselves homeless. Later, Dr Turner finds himself in a race against time to immunise children against polio, and when a Royal visitor comes to the East End, Chummy persuades them to open the new Community Centre. A fascinating portrayal of birth, life, death and a community on the brink of huge social change, Call the Midwife continues to offer a gripping insight into a world that is so drastically different from how we live now.” (product description from Amazon.co.uk)
“Australian adventure drama directed by John Curran and starring Mia Wasikowska. Feeling estranged from the Australian urban culture, Robyn Davidson (Wasikowska) embarks on a trek over the harsh and arid landscape of the outback from Alice Springs to the Indian Ocean. Accompanied only by four camels and her dog, she meets a number of people along the way including Mr. Eddy (Roly Mintuma), an Aboriginal man who imparts some important local wisdom to her, and Rick Smolan (Adam Driver), an ambitious National Geographic photographer who is asked to document her journey for the magazine…” (Product description from Amazon.co.uk)
“Guy Trilby is a 40-year-old who finds a loophole in the rules of The Golden Quill national spelling bee and decides to cause trouble by hijacking the competition. While reporter Jenny Widgeon attempts to discover his true motivation, Guy finds himself forging an unlikely alliance with a competitor: awkward ten-year-old Chaitanya Chopra, who is completely unfazed by Guy’s take-no-prisoners approach to life.” (Syndetics summary)
The other woman.
“After discovering her boyfriend is married, a woman tries to get her ruined life back on track. But when she accidentally meets the wife he’s been cheating on, she realises they have much in common, and her sworn enemy becomes her greatest friend. When yet another affair is discovered, all three women team up to plot mutual revenge on their cheating, lying, three-timing ex. Hilarious comedy starring Cameron Diaz, Leslie Mann and Kate Upton.” (Product description from Amazon.co.uk)
They came together.
“Amy Poehler and Paul Rudd star in this romantic comedy directed and co-written by David Wain. Joel (Rudd) is an executive at a confectionary corporation that is trying to close down Molly (Poehler)’s small, independent sweet shop. Given the circumstances, when they meet they instantly take a disliking to each other. Over time a mutual attraction develops between them but they find that their work is not the only obstacle in their way of finding romance. While dining out with friends Kyle (Bill Hader) and Karen (Ellie Kemper), they recount the story of how they met and got together. The cast also features Cobie Smulders, Ed Helms and Jack McBrayer.” (Product description from Amazon.co.uk)
Leverage. Season one.
“All 13 episodes from the first season of the American crime drama series starring Timothy Hutton. Former insurance investigator Nathan Ford (Hutton) leads a team of professional criminals – cyber-geek Alec Hardison (Aldis Hodge), martial arts expert Eliot Spencer (Christian Kane), acrobatic cat burglar Parker (Beth Riesgraf) and charismatic con-artist and actress Sophie Devereaux (Gina Bellman) – in a quest for revenge against people and companies who misuse their power. Episodes are: ‘The Nigerian Job’, ‘The Homecoming Job’, ‘The Two-Horse Job’, ‘The Miracle Job’, ‘The Bank Shot Job’, ‘The Stork Job’, ‘The Wedding Job’, ‘The Mile High Job’, ‘The Snow Job’, ‘The 12-Step Job’, ‘The Juror #6 Job’, ‘The First David Job’ and ‘The Second David Job’.” (Product description from Amazon.co.uk)
The selfish giant.
“The Selfish Giant is a contemporary fable about 13-year-old Arbor (Conner Chapman) and his best friend Swifty (Shaun Thomas). Excluded from school and outsiders in their own neighbourhood, the two boys meet Kitten (Sean Gilder), a local scrapdealer – the Selfish Giant. They begin collecting scrap metal for him using a horse and cart. Swifty has a natural gift with horses while Arbor emulates Kitten – keen to impress him and make some money. However, Kitten favours Swifty, leaving Arbor feeling hurt and excluded, driving a wedge between the boys. Arbor becomes increasingly greedy and exploitative, becoming more like Kitten. Tensions build, leading to a tragic event, which transforms them all.” (Product description from Amazon.co.uk)
Homeland. The complete third season.
“As Carrie and Saul search for the truth behind the bombing of CIA headquarters, lines are blurred between friend and foe and no one can be trusted. While hiding a stunning secret of her own, Carrie helps recruit Brody for a dangerous mission that could offer him a chance at redemption. But when the plan unravels and Brody is targeted deep inside Iran, he must put his life in Carrie’s hands, leading to one of the most suspenseful and shocking season finales in TV history.” (Syndetics summary)
Lists of all new DVDs added to our collection recently can be found on our Booklists page, along with new fiction in print and audiobook.