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Winter Season 2012

Tuesday 10th January at 8pm
The Skin I Live In [La piel que habito]     Spain 2011  |  117 mins |  15
World renowned plastic surgeon Robert Ledgard has developed a synthetic skin capable of withstanding extreme damage, which he is secretly testing on a woman named Vera, whom he keeps imprisoned in his palatial home. But Robert is tortured by memories of his late wife, and Vera's seemingly willing capitulation hides a desperate desire to break free. The latest film from Spanish maestro Pedro Almodóvar re-unites him with former muse Antonio Banderas in a self-styled "horror story without screams or frights." Inspired by the noir thrillers of Fritz Lang and Alfred Hitchcock, the result is a fascinating, darkly twisted and ultimately disturbing modern take on Mary Shelley's oft- filmed Frankenstein story.

Tuesday 17th January at 8pm
Troll Hunter     Denmark | Sweden | France | Germany 2011  |  136 mins  |  15
The efforts of three college students to shoot a documentary about rogue bear hunter Hans take an unexpected turn when they discover that he is actually tracking down escaped trolls, creatures generally believed to be the stuff of folklore and fairy tales. Initially resistent, Hans eventually allows the students to film his activities, but the project soon proves more dangerous than they could ever have predicted.A witty, smartly made and hugely enjoyable Norwegian entry into the "found footage" horror sub-genre, one whose impressive CG effects are seamlessly blended into the film's convincingly documentary aesthetic, with director André Øvredal building real tension while keeping his tongue slyly in his cheek.

Tuesday 24th January at 8pm
Melancholia     Denmark | Sweden | France | Germany 2011  |  136 mins  |  15
At her own wedding reception, the superficially cheerful Justine (Kirsten Dunst) finds herself overcome with depression, a mood change that alienates everyone around her, including her sister Claire (Charlotte Gainsbourg) and her new husband Michael (Alexander Skarsgård). But her seemingly inexplicable sense of impending doom is shown to have substance when it is forecast that the world is coming to an end. Following the controversy of Antichrist, Danish provocateur Lars von Trier delivers a visually poetic and compellingly observed study of depression, relationships and destructive behaviour, aided at every step by a first-rate cast that includes Charlotte Rampling, John Hurt, Stellan Skarsgård, Udo Kier and Kiefer Sutherland.

Tuesday 31st January at 8pm
The Guard     Ireland 2011  |  96 mins  |  15
The investigation of a seemingly random murder sees unconventional west Ireland policeman Gerry Boyle teamed with by-the-book FBI agent Wendell Everett, who is leading an investigation into transatlantic drug smuggling. Initially dismayed by Boyle's unconventional approach, Everett soon realises that his new partner's natural police instincts could be the key to solving his case.An old fashioned 'odd couple' setup is the basis for one of the year's funniest and most unashamedly enjoyable films. Written and directed by John Michael McDonagh (brother of In Bruges writer-director Martin McDonagh), it features a dryly superb comic performance from Brendan Gleeson, and excellent support from Don Cheadle, Liam Cunningham, David Wilmot and Mark Strong.

Tuesday 7th February at 8pm
We Need to Talk About Kevin     UK/USA 2011  |  112 mins  |  15
Travel writer Eva (Tilda Swinton) struggles to cope with the pressures of motherhood, and over time becomes distanced from her difficult and manipulative son Kevin (Ezra Miller). But when Kevin goes on a high school killing spree, Eva is forced to confront her own feelings of responsibility and guilt over her son's upbringing and subsequent actions. We Need to Talk About Kevin is the first film for nine years from director Lynn Ramsay, who made such a splash with Ratcatcher and Morvern Callar. Adapted from Lionel Shriver's award-winning novel by Ramsey and co-screenwriter Rory Kinnear, this is an intense, sobering but mesmerising and cinematic experience, and boasts at its core three striking performances from Tilda Swinton, Ezra Miller, and John C. Reilly.

Tuesday 14th February at 8pm
The Ides of March     USA 2011  |  101 mins  |  15
Likeable and talented young Stephen Meyers (Ryan Gosling) lands his dream job of masterminding the presidential campaign for enigmatic and politically sincere Governor Mike Morris (George Clooney), under the watchful eye of seasoned political campaign manager Paul Zara (Philip Seymour Hoffman). It all starts so well, but as the campaign progresses and idealism gives way to pragmatism, Meyers begins to learn just how dirty the game of campaign politics really can be. Directed by George Clooney, who adapted Beau Willimon's play Farragut North with Grant Heslov and Willimon himself, this is a dark and refreshingly cynical look at the world of insider politics, one that bristles with intrigue and shines in its script and a string of superb performances.

Tuesday 21st February at 8pm
Take Shelter     USA 2011  |  120 mins  |  15
Loving husband and father Curtis's contentment with life is disrupted when he begins having dreams of an approaching apocalypse.When the dreams later develop into waking visions, his attempts to protect those close to him from what he believes is an approaching storm start to alienate him from his increasingly concerned family. Are his visions real, or is Curtis in the first stages of a psychological breakdown? Take Shelter is a tense and gripping drama, but also a touching and emotionally involving one, a beautifully nuanced study of a man whose determination to protect his family may well be transforming him into the primary threat. Only the second feature from talented newcomer Jeff Nichols, it boasts a superb central performance from Michael Shannon. (Cine Outsider review)

Tuesday 28th February at 8pm
The Light Thief [Svet-Ake]     France | Kyrgyzstan | Germany | Netherlands 2011  |  80 mins  |  15
In a small and impoverished town in the post-Soviet Kyrgyz Republic, local electrician Svet-ake (aka "Mr. Light," played by director and co-writer Aktan Arym Kubat) is a man whose willingness to help others with their personal issues has made him as popular as his wily technical skills. But when he strikes a deal with an unprincipled profiteer, he finds his altruistic nature being exploited at the expense of those he regards as his friends. A warm and engaging parable of good and evil, The Light Thief vividly captures the details of Kyrgyzstan village life, passes comment of the fate of the region's post-Soviet economy, and reminds us that even the quietest corners of the modern world are not safe from the ravages of entrepreneurial greed.

Tuesday 6th March at 8pm
Tyrannosaur     UK 2011  |  91 mins  |  18
Alcoholic widower Joseph is a man with a rage management problem, one that prompts him to lash out at anything and anyone for just about any reason.With his life in a downward spiral of furious self- destruction, a chance meeting with middle-class charity shop worker Hannah begins an uneasy friendship that brings a much needed ray of hope to Joseph's desolate life.Unbeknown to him,Hannah is dealing with her own difficult home life issues.The directorial debut of actor Paddy Considine (Dead Man's Shoes, The Bourne Ultimatum, Red Riding) is an uncompromising, emotionally wrenching but brilliantly handled study of how mutual understanding can bring light to lives dominated by darkness and boasts two superb central performances from Peter Mullan and Olivia Colman. (Cine Outsider review)

Tuesday 13th March at 8pm
The Salt of Life [Gianni e le donne]     Italy 2011  |  90 mins  |  12A
Forced into early retirement, middle-aged Gianni spends his waking hours doing menial jobs for his wife and his attractive neighbour, and keeping tabs on his teenager daughter and her boyfriend.When he learns that his good friend Alfonso has had a lover for two years, he decides that it may be time to reacquaint himself with one of life's most enduring pleasures. But finding the right woman proves harder that he first imagined. Gianni Di Gregorio follows up the surprise success of his debut feature Mid-August Lunch – which he wrote and directed at the tender age of 60 – with an equally beguiling, wistful and wittily observed story of the pleasures and difficulties of maturity. It's engagingly performed by a well-chosen cast, including Di Gregorio himself in the lead role of Gianni.

Tuesday 20th March at 8pm
In a Better World [Hævnen]     Denmark | Sweden 2010  |  119 mins  |  15
Troubled young Christian has known little stability since the death of his mother, and has become distanced from his father, who spends much of his time away on business trips.When he strikes up a friendship with the quieter Elias, whose father is also often absent, he finds a target for his anger by helping his new friend strike back at schoolyard bullies.When Elias's father returns from a trip to Africa, he attempts to convince the boys that arguments can be settled without recourse to violence, but it's not always easy to practice what you preach. Multi-award-winning director Susanne Bier (Brothers, After the Wedding) delivers an enthralling and intelligent examination of male reaction to injustice, and gets a string of fine performances from an excellent cast.

Tuesday 27th March at 8pm
Kill List     UK 2011  |  95 mins  |  18
Former soldier Jay (Neil Maskell) is struggling to pay his household bills and keep his family afloat.When his former war comrade Gal (Michael Smiley) proposes that the pair take on a series of contract killings, Jay reluctantly agrees, but the list of names they are initially given soon proves to be longer than they expected.The second feature from Down Terrace director BenWheatley is a dark and disturbing but finely crafted film, one that successfully melds social realism with elements from past gangster and horror classics – Get Carter and The Wicker Man are two notable examples – to create a gripping, blackly comic and horrifying new take on a once cliché-ridden genre.

Tuesday 3rd April at 8pm
Miss Bala     Mexico 2011  |  113 mins  |  15
Laura looks after her father and younger brother in humble circumstances in the Mexican border city of Baja. She dreams of becoming a beauty queen, and when her friend invites her to enter a local beauty pageant, she jumps at the chance. But the night before the audition, Laura is witness to a gangland massacre and becomes inadvertently drawn into the darkest elements of Mexico's criminal underworld. Shot in a series of long, fluid and always purposeful takes, Gerardo Naranjo's Oscar-nominated follow-up to his acclaimed I'm Going to Explode is an intense, sobering but utterly compelling socio-political thriller, with a superb central performance from former model Stephanie Sigman.