THE SHAPE OF WATER

It’s the Cold War era: America, 1962. A mute, isolated woman, named Elisa (Sally Hawkins), works as a cleaning lady in a hidden, high-security government lab. When she and co-worker Zelda (Octavia Spencer) discover a classified experiment – a mysterious, scaled creature from South America – their lives are set to change forever, especially as their new friend’s fate lies in the hands of a malevolent government agent and marine biologist. Hawkins plays Elisa with delicate nuance, in del Toro’s spellbinding and romantic tale of the inexplicable. Full details.

JOURNEY’S END

In March 1918, an army company take their posting on a front-line trench, knowing that a German attack is imminent. With supplies as low as the men’s morale, this is no place for new recruit Raleigh (Asa Butterfield), who has requested a placement with Stanhope (Sam Claflin), his sister’s fiancé, now much changed through war stresses and alcohol. Director Saul Dibb (The Duchess) captures the dread-inducing claustrophobia of the trenches in this outstanding adaptation of RC Sherriff’s 1928 play.  Full details.

JOURNEY’S END – Subtitled

In March 1918, an army company take their posting on a front-line trench, knowing that a German attack is imminent. With supplies as low as the men’s morale, this is no place for new recruit Raleigh (Asa Butterfield), who has requested a placement with Stanhope (Sam Claflin), his sister’s fiancé, now much changed through war stresses and alcohol. Director Saul Dibb (The Duchess) captures the dread-inducing claustrophobia of the trenches in this outstanding adaptation of RC Sherriff’s 1928 play. Subtitled for those with a hearing loss. Full details.

COCO

As the Day of the Dead draws near, young Miguel defies his family to enter a talent contest – but borrowing a guitar from the tomb of a local musical icon spirits him (and lovable stray dog Dante) into the afterlife, where the carnival is also in full swing! Can Miguel find a way back with the blessing of his late relatives – and even solve a family mystery? Pixar’s celebration of Mexican culture is a return to the heights of Inside Out and Wall-E – an unequivocally life-affirming, hilarious, moving and wondrously designed masterpiece. Full details.

COCO

As the Day of the Dead draws near, young Miguel defies his family to enter a talent contest – but borrowing a guitar from the tomb of a local musical icon spirits him (and lovable stray dog Dante) into the afterlife, where the carnival is also in full swing! Can Miguel find a way back with the blessing of his late relatives – and even solve a family mystery? Pixar’s celebration of Mexican culture is a return to the heights of Inside Out and Wall-E – an unequivocally life-affirming, hilarious, moving and wondrously designed masterpiece. Full details.

PHANTOM THREAD

In 1950s London, distinguished couturier Reynolds Woodcock dresses socialites, movie stars and royalty with unique style and flair. He lives a carefully tailored life with women coming and going, until he is entranced by Alma, a young, headstrong woman, who soon becomes a fixture in his life as his muse and lover – yet refuses to submit to his usually unbending will. Daniel Day-Lewis is enthralling in what may be his final screen role, complemented by an equally captivating Lesley Manville and newcomer Vicky Krieps. Full details.

PHANTOM THREAD

In 1950s London, distinguished couturier Reynolds Woodcock dresses socialites, movie stars and royalty with unique style and flair. He lives a carefully tailored life with women coming and going, until he is entranced by Alma, a young, headstrong woman, who soon becomes a fixture in his life as his muse and lover – yet refuses to submit to his usually unbending will. Daniel Day-Lewis is enthralling in what may be his final screen role, complemented by an equally captivating  Lesley Manville and newcomer Vicky Krieps. Full details.

LOVELESS

The director of Leviathan returns with a grim portrayal of life in modern Russia. A warring couple –  living together only because of a housing shortage – are slow to realize that their son has run away. They resent the time taken from their new partners to deal with the disappearance, and the police are also uninterested. Only a group of volunteers goes looking for the boy – up and down endless apartment stairways, walking through the forests in hi-vis jackets, posting leaflets on bus stops, and searching abandoned houses – as the winter closes in and the snow gets heavier. Full details.

THE GREATEST SHOWMAN – Babes In Arms screening

This original musical tells the rags to riches story of P.T. Barnum (Hugh Jackman), who gathers together a group of talented misfits to create a spectacle while fighting society’s prejudices. Marrying his childhood sweetheart (Michelle Williams), everything seems to be going well until he falls for the charms of opera singer Jenny Lind (Rebecca Ferguson). First-time director Michael Gracey fills the screen with dazzling choreography and colour, the songs are belted out by an array of talent, and Jackman makes us believe that Barnum can conquer the world. ‘Splashy, fun, crowd-pleasing entertainment’ (Film Journal). Babes In Arms screening. Full details.

THE POST

Spielberg’s thrilling drama centres on the Washington Post’s Katherine Graham, the first female publisher of a major American newspaper. Graham forms an alliance with editor Ben Bradlee (Tom Hanks), as they risk their careers, and compete with the New York Times, to expose a massive cover-up of government secrets spanning three decades and four US presidents. With Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks surrounded by a highly acclaimed ensemble cast, accomplished performances abound in a 1970s tale with clear relevance for the present day. Screened on International Women’s Day. Full details.