A surefire method of curbing Summer holiday hangovers is a trip to the cinema. Is there any better way to escape the desperate, desperate heat than with a choc top, a buddy and two hours of (fully air-conditioned) escapism? Summer's here and the holidays are nearing, which means a lineup of the most hyped, most anticipated, most expensive movies are heading to Australian cinemas. These are the ones we're most looking forward to...

Title THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO
Director David Fincher
Synopsis In case you aren't one of the zillion people who have read the books, in a nutshell: Daniel Craig plays journalist Mikael Blomkvist who gets hired to solve a 40-year-old mystery involving a missing girl. He is helped along the way by the awesomely vindictive computer hacker, Lisbeth Salander (played by Rooney Mara).
Why we're excited Firstly, David Fincher does not make lemons. Ever. His adaptation of Stieg Larsson's gripping bestseller guarantees frenetic editing, compelling suspense, transportive Nordic scenery, a blistering Trent Reznor score, and terrific performances - particularly from Rooney Mara who is said to deliver a star-making turn as the titular inked heroine. Sounds like pure cinematic entertainment.
Opens 26 December 2011



Title MELANCHOLIA
Director Lars Von Trier
Synopsis Two sisters (played by Kirsten Dunst and Charlotte Gainsbourg) find their already strained relationship challenged as a mysterious new planet threatens to collide into the Earth. It's been described as "A beautiful movie about the end of the world".
Why we're excited Von Trier is not to everyone's tastes but this looks like his most accessible movie to date. His surrealist, human take on the Apocalypse looks provocative and moving, but the main attraction here is unarguably Kirsten Dunst, who's widely-praised performance is said to be a true coming of age performance. Dare I say it: bring it on.
Opens 15 December 2011

**We have 10 double passes of Melancholia to giveaway. Details at the bottom of the post.**



Title THE ARTIST
Director Michel Hazanavicius
Synopsis Hollywood, 1927: As silent movie star George Valentin wonders if the arrival of talking pictures will cause him to fade into oblivion, he sparks with Peppy Miller, a young dancer set for a big break.
Why we're excited Already a major Oscar favourite, The Artist is being touted as one of the finest films of the year boasting a beguiling performance by Jean Dujardin as the declining star. Writer/director Hazanavicius' has made a true homage to the era of filmmaking captured in the story: The Artist is a silent film in black and white.
Opens 2 February 2012



Title MARTHA MARCY MAY MARLENE
Director Sean Durkin
Synopsis Elizabeth Olsen stars as Martha, a damaged woman haunted by painful memories and increasing paranoia, who struggles to reassimilate with her family after fleeing a cult led by the charismatic Patrick (played by John Hawkes).
Why we're excited Ever since premiering in Sundance at the beginning of the year, Sean Durkin's feature-length debut has been followed by waves of critical praise - particularly for the performances of the always-wonderful John Hawkes and Elizabeth Olsen who's astonishing star turn has made her a lock for a Best Actress Oscar nod. And who doesn't love a good cult movie - creepy and fucking fascinating!
Opens 19 January 2012

**We have 20 in-season double passes of Martha Marcy May Marlene to giveaway. Details at the bottom of the post.**



Title THE MUPPETS
Director James Bobin
Synopsis With the help of three fans (Jason Segel, Amy Adams, and Peter Linz voicing muppet character 'Walter'), The Muppets must reunite to save their old theatre from a greedy oil tycoon (Chris Cooper).
Why we're excited It's The Muppets!! THE MUPPETS! That's enough for me. But bonus reasons to be excited are: adorably funny Muppet-lover Jason Segel wrote the screenplay, it's directed by Flight Of The Conchords writer/creator James Bobin, and features cameo appearances by Rashida Jones, Emily Blunt, Ricky Gervais, Jack Black, Donald Glover, Danny Trejo, Billy Crystal, Alan Arkin...
Opens 12 January 2012



Title YOUNG ADULT
Director Jason Reitman
Synopsis Soon after her divorce, a YA fiction writer (Charlize Theron) returns to her home in small-town Minnesota, looking to rekindle a romance with her ex-boyfriend (Patrick Wilson, who is now married with kids. She ends up spending time with a former classmate (Patton Oswalt) who hasn't quite gotten over high school either.
Why we're excited The writing-directing team behind indie hit Juno, Diablo Cody and Jason Reitman respectively, have collaborated again on this movie and (based on premise alone) looks as though it has potential to be incredibly cringey. However, Charlize Theron is almost always terrific, and the against-type casting here seems inspired - as does the choice of brilliant comedian Patton Oswalt as her partner in crime.
Opens 19 January 2012



Title THE DESCENDANTS
Director Alexander Payne
Synopsis Matt King (George Clooney) is an indifferent husband and father of two girls, who is forced to re-examine his past and embrace his future when his wife suffers a boating accident. While his wife lies in a coma Matt learns she has been having an affair, causing him to question his life and relationships.
Why we're excited Despite the fact that the synopsis has the bones of another soapy Hollywood comedy-drama about families in crisis, the reviews have been universally glowing. Ann Hornaday of the Washington Post called it "tough, tender, observant, exquisitely nuanced portrait of mixed emotions at their most confounding and profound" and George Clooney's performance has been touted as the role of his career.
Opens 12 January 2012



Title ARRIETTY
Director Hiromasa Yonebayashi
Synopsis The Clock family are four-inch-tall people who live anonymously in another family's residence, borrowing simple items to make their home. Life changes for the Clocks when their daughter, Arrietty, is discovered by a human boy! ARGH!
Why we're excited Inspired by the popular children's novel series The Borrowers this is the latest creation from Japan's famed animation house Studio Ghibli (Spirited Away). The English version has been voiced by Saoirse Ronan, Mark Strong and Olivia Colman and, like previous Ghibli movies, it looks like a fully realised, visually dazzling alternate world in which audiences will be completely immersed.
Opens 12 January 2012



Title SHAME
Director Steve McQueen
Synopsis Brandon (Michael Fassbender) is a 30-something man living in New York who is unable to manage his sex life. After his wayward younger sister moves into his apartment, Brandon's world spirals out of control. From director Steve McQueen (Hunger), Shame is a compelling and timely examination of the nature of need, how we live our lives and the experiences that shape us.
Why we're excited The subject matter is as compelling as it is grim, and Michael Fassbender is just extraordinary. Reviewers are calling his riveting turn as emotionally crippled Brandon the "performance of the year".
Opens 9 February 2012




TICKET GIVEAWAYS
Martha Marcy May Marlene we have 20 x double passes to giveaway. To win simply head to the comment section (below) and write 'Martha'.
Melancholia we have 10 x double passes to giveaway. To win just write 'Sad Face' in the comment section and the first 10 entries will be heading to the cinnies!