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Our top 5 film picks for February

BY Tom Browne

1st Jan 2015 Film & TV

Our top 5 film picks for February

We've selected five of the latest films out this month for you to watch. From zombie infected Austen to the subtly affecting Chronic.


The title of this absorbing film refers to Dalton Trumbo, one of Hollywood’s most acclaimed screenwriters who nevertheless found himself blacklisted in the 1940s and 1950s for his past ties to the Communist Party.

Although the movie is rather conventional in narrative terms, Bryan Cranston (of Breaking Bad fame) is consistently excellent in the lead, and there are fine cameos from Helen Mirren as the Commie-baiting gossip columnist Hedda Hopper and the always-reliable John Goodman as Frank King, the down-at-heel studio head who gives Trumbo and his colleagues anonymous work when no one else will touch them.

Special mention should also be given to John McNamara’s hilarious and street-smart screenplay, of which Trumbo himself would be proud.


Pride and Prejudice and Zombies

This very loose take on the Jane Austen classic once again focuses on the burgeoning love between the redoubtable Elizabeth Bennett (Lily James) and the class-conscious Mr Darcy (Sam Riley)—but this time set against the backdrop of a 19th-century England overrun by the undead.

Austen purists will be choking on their toasted teacakes, but there’s much grisly fun for the rest of us.



Image via Curzon Artifical Eye

Tim Roth has often stolen the show with well-judged supporting roles, but here he takes centre stage as a troubled and reserved home-care nurse who has to juggle his own problems with those of his terminally ill patients.

The film is unsparing in its details and shorn of any sentimentality; as such, it may be too emotionally raw for some, but it’s worth checking out for Roth’s performance and a screenplay that scooped an award at last year’s Cannes Film Festival.


A Bigger Splash

A partial remake of the French classic La Piscine, this focuses on ailing rock star Marianne (Tilda Swinton) and lover Paul (Matthias Schoenaerts), whose holiday in Italy is interrupted by a visit from Marianne’s old flame Harry (Ralph Fiennes) and his vampish daughter Penelope (Dakota Johnson).

This oddly uneven psychodrama functions best as a showcase for its stars, with Fiennes and Swinton impressing in particular.


Dad’s Army

The boys from the Home Guard first hit the big screen in 1971, but this version boasts a whole new cast, including Bill Nighy, Tom Courtenay, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Michael Gambon and Toby Jones.

Expect slapstick laughs and incompetence aplenty. All together now: “So who do you think you are kidding, Mr Hitler…?”


You can read our picks early every month with a copy of Reader's Digest magazine


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