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Notes on a Scandal

Golden Globe Nominee Best Actress, Supporting Actress, Screenplay. When Sheba Hart joins St. George's as the new art teacher, Barbara Covett senses a kindred spirit. But Barbara is not the only one drawn to her. Sheba begins an illicit affair and Barbara becomes the keeper of her secret. "Notes on a Scandal" is a story of loneliness, loyalty, envy and love. Directed by Richard Eyre ("Stage Beauty") Judi Dench, Cate Blanchett, Bill Nighy, Andrew Simpson, Phil Davis, Michael Maloney, Juno Temple, Max Lewis

R for language and some aberrant sexual content/98m/F/Fox Searchlight

Last King of Scotland

Winner Golden Globe Best Actor Forest Whitaker. In an incredible twist of fate, a Scottish doctor on a Ugandan medical mission becomes irreversibly entangled with one of the world's most barbaric figures: Idi Amin. Impressed by Dr. Garrigan's brazen attitude in a moment of crisis, the newly self-appointed Ugandan President Amin hand picks him as his personal physician and closest confidante. Though Garrigan is at first flattered and fascinated by his new position, he soon awakens to Amin's savagery - and his own complicity in it. Forest Whitaker, James McAvoy, Kerry Washington, Gillian Anderson

R for some strong violence and gruesome images, sexual content and language/123m/S/Fox Searchlight

Volver

Golden Globe Nominee Best Foreign Language Film and Best Actress. Set in Madrid and its lively working-class neighbourhoods, the immigrants from various Spanish provinces share dreams, lives and fortune with a multitude of ethnic groups and other races. At the heart of this social framework, three generations of women survive wind, fire and even death, thanks to goodness, audacity and a limitless vitality. Raimunda is married to an unemployed labourer and has a teenage daughter. Sole, her sister, makes a living as a hairdresser. Their mother, who died in a fire along with her husband, appears first to her sister and then to Sole, although the people with whom she has some unresolved matters are Raimunda and her neighbour in the village, Agustina. The living and the dead coexist without any discord, causing situations that are either hilarious or filled with a deep, genuine emotion. The way in which the dead continue to be present in their lives, the richness and humanity of their rites mean that the dead never die. Directed by Pedro Almod&

243;var ("Bad Education", "Talk to Her", "All About My Mother") Pen&

233;lope Cruz, Yohana Cobo, Carmen Maura, Lola Due&

241;as, Blanca Portillo

R for language/120m/S/Sony Pictures Classics

Children of Men

A world one generation from now has fallen into anarchy due to an infertility defect in the population. The youngest citizen has just died at 18, and humankind is facing the likelihood of its own extinction. When the planet's last remaining hope - a lone pregnant woman - is threatened, a disillusioned bureaucrat becomes a reluctant activist forced to face his own demons while protecting her. Directed and co-written by Alfonso Cuaron ("Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban", "Y Tu Mama Tambien") Clive Owen, Julianne Moore, Michael Caine, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Charlie Hunnam, Clare-Hope Ashitey

R for strong violence, language, some drug use and brief nudity/109m/F/Universal

Queen

Winner of 2 Golden Globes - Best Actress Helen Mirren, Best Screenplay An intimate, revealing and often humorous portrait of the British royal family in crisis. The setting for this fictional account of real events are the private chambers of the Royal Family and the British government in the wake of the sudden death of Princess Diana in August of 1997. The tightly contained, tradition bound world of the Queen of England is abruptly brought into conflict with the slick modernity of the country's brand new, image-conscious Prime Minister, Tony Blair. Directed by Stephen Frears ("High Fidelity", "Mrs. Henderson Presents") and written by Peter Morgan ("The Last King of Scotland") Helen Mirren, James Cromwell, Michael Sheen

PG-13 for brief strong language/98m/F/Miramax

Painted Veil

Golden Globe Winner Best Original Score Based on the classic novel by W. Somerset Maugham, "The Painted Veil" is a love story set in the 1920s that tells the story of a young English couple, Walter, a middle class doctor and Kitty, an upper-class woman, who get married for the wrong reasons and relocate to Shanghai, where she falls in love with someone else. When he uncovers her infidelity, he accepts a job in vengeance in a remote village in China ravaged by a deadly epidemic, and takes her along. Their journey brings meaning to their relationship and gives them purpose in one of the most remote and beautiful places on earth. Naomi Watts, Edward Norton, Live Schreiber, Toby Jones

PG-13 for some mature sexual situations, partial nudity, disturbing images and brief drug content/124m/S/Warner Independent Pictures

Dreamgirls

Winner of — Golden Globes - Best Picture/Musical or Comedy, Supporting Actor Eddie Murphy, Supporting Actress Jennifer Hudson. Set in the turbulent early 1960s to mid-70s, "Dreamgirls" follows the rise of a trio of women - Effie, Deena and Lorrell - who form a promising girl group. An ambitious manager gradually takes control of the girls' look and sound, eventually giving them a shot at stardom. The spotlight, however, begins to focus on one of the girls, as they come to realize that the cost of fame and fortune may be higher than they ever imagined. Jamie Foxx, Beyonc&

233; Knowles, Eddie Murphy, Danny Glover, Anika Noni Rose, Jennifer Hudson, Keith Robinson, Bobby Slayton

PG-13 for language, some sexuality and drug content/131m/S/Paramount

Smokin' Aces

A mob boss takes out a hefty contract on Buddy "Aces" Israel, a sleazy magician who has agreed to turn state's evidence against the Vegas mob. When word of the bounty spreads, thugs-for-hire, double-crossing mobsters, bounty hunters and hot vixens race to rub out Aces. Ben Affleck, Jeremy Piven, Andy Garcia, Alicia Keys, Ray Liotta, Ryan Reynolds, Peter Berg

R for some strong violence, sexuality, nudity, language and drug use/108m/S/Universal

Epic Movie

A parody of recent films. the story centers on four not-so-young orphans: One raised by a curator at the Louvre, another a refugee from Mexican "libre" wrestling, the third a recent victim of snakes on her plane, and the fourth a "normal" resident of a mutant "X" community. The hapless quartet visits a chocolate factory, where they stumble into an enchanted wardrobe that transports them to the land of Gnarnia. There they meet a flamboyant pirate captain and earnest students of wizardry. Kal Penn, Adam Campbell, Jennifer Coolidge

PG-13 for crude and sexual humor, language and some comic violence/85m/F/Fox

Catch and Release

After the sudden death of her fianc&

233;, Gray finds comfort in the company of his friends: Lighthearted Sam, hyper-responsible Dennis, and his old childhood buddy Fritz, an irresponsible playboy whom she'd pegged as one of the least reliable people in the world. As secrets about her supposedly perfect fianc&

233; emerge, Gray comes to see new sides of the man she thought she knew, while finding herself drawn to one of his friends. Jennifer Garner, Timothy Olyphant, Juliette Lewis, Kevin Smith

PG-13 for sexual content, language and some drug use/112m/S/Sony

Arthur and the Invisibles

Ten-year-old Arthur, in a bid to save his grandfather's house from being demolished, goes looking for some much-fabled hidden treasure in the land of the Minimoys, a tiny people living in harmony with nature. Directed by Luc Besson, based on his books Freddie Highmore, Mia Farrow, and the voices of David Bowie, Robert DeNiro, Emilio Estevez, Jimmy Fallon, Harvey Keitel, Madonna, Snoop Dog, Jason Bateman, Anthony Anderson

PG/94m/S/MGM

Hitcher

A young man and woman driving across country become prey for a serial killer, who blames his murders on the young man. Remake of the 1986 film which starred Rutger Hauer, C. Thomas Howell and Jennifer Jason Leigh. Sean Bean, Sophia Bush, Zachary Knighton

R for strong bloody violence, terror and language/84m/S/Focus

Night at the Museum

Larry, a down-and-out dreamer, grudgingly accepts the supposedly menial job of graveyard shift security guard at the Natural History Museum. He soon discovers that when the visitors go home at the end of the day, the real adventure begins &

as the museum's stuffed, waxed and well- preserved residents come out to play. Facing the possibility of losing his job and letting down his son Nick yet again, Larry must wage an incredible battle to save the museum, hoping to become at last the bold, adventurous dad he's always wanted to be. Directed by Shawn Levy ("Pink Panther", "Cheaper by the Dozen") Ben Stiller, Robin Williams, Carla Gugino, Dick Van Dyke, Mickey Rooney, Bill Cobbs, Ricky Gervais, Kim Raver

PG for mild action, language and brief rude humor/109m/F/Fox