The Canberra Film Diary: 12 – 18 December 2013


Welcome to the latest edition of The Canberra Film Diary, your one stop shop for all notable cinematic screenings within the ACT. For details on specific cinemas, check out the Canberra Page.


Christmas comes early this week in the ACT with a bumper crop of advanced previews to get you in the festive mood as well as freeing up your Boxing Day schedule.

Here are this week’s highlights:

Nebraska – Friday 6.30pm, Palace Electric

There was an awfully long wait between Sideways and The Descendants, but thankfully Alexander Payne only made us wait two years this time.  Now he is back with a tale about a father and son trip across Nebraska, which is already receiving Oscar buzz and five star reviews.  This is a must see, especially as it won’t be out until February next year.

Frozen – Sunday 10.30 am, GRU Manuka.

What says Christmas better than a Disney film? In the latest offering, fearless optimist Anna teams up with Kristoff in an epic journey, encountering Everest-like conditions, and a hilarious snowman named Olaf in a race to find Anna’s sister Elsa, whose icy powers have trapped the kingdom in eternal winter.  Sounds perfect family fun.

Saving Mr Banks – Monday 7.00pm, GRU Manuka

Continuing the Disney theme, Tom Hanks and Emma Thompson star in this tale of how Mary Poppins came to delight us on our screens.  Another Oscar front-runner and not out till 9 January next year.

Honourable Mentions

The Railway Man  – Monday 6.30pm, Palace Electric

Director Jonathan Teplizky will be in attendance for a special Q&A after this advanced screening of his latest drama, a true story set in WWII starring Colin Firth and Nicole Kidman, which is not scheduled for release until Boxing Day.

Major Releases

Three major releases hit the ACT this week:

American Hustle – Christian Bale and Jennifer Lawrence lead an all-star case in the latest offering from David O Russell.  Screening everywhere

The Gilded Cage – Family, food and friendships are all examined in this delightful and charming tale of the importance of remembering your roots.  One of the highlights of CIFF for me.  Screening exclusively at Palace.

Battle Of The Year: The Dream Team – Ever wondered if Sawyer from Lost could coach a dance troop to glory?  Well here is you chance to find out. Playing Hoyts and Limelight.

Other Notable Screenings

12 Dec – ARC – Fallout

13 Dec – Palace – Nebraska

13 Dec – Sunset Cinema – Dirty Dancing

14 Dec – Sunset Cinema – Blue Jasmine

14 Dec –ARC  – Wolf Children

14 Dec – ARC – Fallout

14 Dec – ARC – The Patience Stone

14 Dec – Palace GFF – A.C.A.B. All Cats Are Brilliant

14 Dec – Palace GFF – Capital

15 Dec – ARC – The Pevert’s Guide to Ideology

15 Dec – Palace Vintage – Anchorman

16 Dec – Palace – The Railway Man Q&A

18 Dec – Sunset Cinema – The Counsellor

So that’s it, another bumper week of cinematic goodness.  Let me in the comments what you plan on seeing. Have a good week.

The Canberra Film Diary: 5 – 11 December 2013


Welcome to the latest edition of The Canberra Film Diary, your one stop shop for all notable cinematic screenings within the ACT.  For details on specific cinemas, check out the Canberra Page.


Lots to look forward to this week, including a short film festival, some education from James Bond and the second half of a Tom Cruise double to enjoy. Here are this week’s highlights:

Tropfest  – Sunday, 8pm, Exhibition Park.

Tropfest is both Australia’s most prestigious and the world’s largest short film festival.  It takes place in Sydney’s Centennial Park with live feeds to state capitals, including Canberra.  The event will screen the 16 finalists from over 700 entries and also include live music, entertainment, bars and food.   Should be a cracking night out.   Click here for more details.

One Life – Monday + Tuesday, Palace & Dendy

See BBC Earth’s fascinating exploration of life and survival in the animal kingdom on the big screen and narrated by the one and only Daniel Craig.  Promises to be both beautiful and educational.

Philomena – Wednesday, Dendy (Club Dendy screening)

Fresh from the British Film Festival, Philomena, is a tale of a mother (Judi Dench) who with the help of a BBC journalist, attempts to track down her son who was taken away from her decades before.  Having received rave reviews, it’s not opening here till Boxing Day, so grab this chance to see it before the Christmas rush.

Honourable Mentions

Days Of Thunder – Sunday, Limelight

One of last week’s highlights was the Sunset Cinema screening of Top Gun.  This week, Limelight gives you the opportunity to watch Top Gun with cars, which is effectively what Days of Thunder is.  Nowhere near as good, but still a huge amount of fun. Remember, rubbing is just part of racing. ★★★

Major Releases

Enders Game – The latest of this years science fiction adaptions touches down, starring Harrison Ford and Asa Butterfield. Screening Everywhere.

Kill Your Darlings – They say all the best poetry comes from pain and love; well this tale of the origins of the beat poets has plenty of both.  Didn’t quite do it for me at CIFF, but still worth checking out.  Screening at Dendy and Palace. ★★★

Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs 2 – The long awaited follow up to one of the most original and bonkers animated films in years has finally arrived and it’s been worth the wait.  Cross Jurassic Park with food and you’ll get the picture.  Screening everywhere. ★★★★

Delivery Man – The latest Vince Vaughn vehicle arrives and is the tale of affable underachiever who discovers he has fathered over 500 children through anonymous donations to a fertility clinic 20 years ago.  Screening Hoyts, Dendy and Limelight.

Night Train To Lisbon – Another CIFF alumni gets a wider release. I missed this one at the festival, but it sold out which tells you something about this adaption of Pierre Mercier’s bestselling novel. Screening at Palace and GRU.

The Spectacular Now – I missed this during last weeks previews, but I remain very intrigued to see this tale of high school romance from the director of Smashed and the writers of (500) Days Of Summer, two of the best films of recent years. Screening exclusively at Palace.

Closed Circuit  – Straight from the recent British Film Festival and now finally into a full run, Eric Bana stars in a slightly stilted tale of legal ramifications in the aftermath of a terrorist attack in London.  A promising premise, but ultimately unsatisfying.  Screening exclusively at Palace. ★★

Other Notable Screenings

5 Dec  – Sunset Cinema – Prisoners

5 Dec – ARC – The Pevert’s Guide to Ideology

6 Dec – Sunset Cinema – The Smurfs 2

7 Dec – Sunset Cinema – Captain Phillips

7 Dec – ARC – Patrick

7 Dec – ARC – The Pevert’s Guide to Ideology

7 Dec – Palace GFF – The Eternal Return of Antonis Paraskevas

8 Dec – ARC – Fallout

8 Dec – ARC – Koolhaus Houselife + Phillip Johnson

8 Dec – Palace Vintage – Pretty Woman

8 Dec – Limelight – Days Of Thunder

8 Dec – TropFest

8 Dec – Palace GFF – Greek-Australian Short Film Festival

11 Dec – Sunset Cinema – We’re The Millers

11 Dec – Club Dendy – Philomena

11 Dec – Palace GFF – Love in the End

So that’s it, another bumper week of cinematic goodness.  Let me in the comments what you plan on seeing. Have a good week.