The films to see in York this week – 15-21 November 2019

Are you hanging up a stocking on your wall? Are you hoping that the snow will start to fall?

Of course you’re not, because it’s only mid-November and you have standards. But nonetheless, this year’s big festive movie hits cinemas this week, in the shape of the George Michael-inspired romcom Last Christmas.

In other ‘80s pop news, Robert De Niro’s waiting for you to come and see him in Martin Scorsese’s new gangster epic The Irishman

New releases

The Irishman

Martin Scorsese returns to the gangster genre with this highly acclaimed drama, which sees him reunited with Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci, as well as working with Al Pacino for the first time.

Like Goodfellas, this decades-spanning tale is a real-life saga of organised crime, with De Niro playing Frank Sheeran, the Irishman of the title – a union official with mafia connections who becomes involved with crime boss Russell Bufalino (Pesci) and union leader Jimmy Hoffa (Pacino).

It debuted to rave reviews at the London Film Festival last month, with The Guardian among many proclaiming it ‘his best picture since Goodfellas and one of his best films ever’.

All the more reason to catch it on the big screen before it hits Netflix at the end of the month, then…

Last Christmas

  • Cert 12A, 103 mins
  • Vue York, City Screen, Everyman
  • From Fri Nov 15
  • More details

For all that it’s a couple of weeks too early, this festive romcom certainly has plenty going for it on paper.

Co-written by Emma Thompson (alongside playwright Bryony Kimmings), featuring the music of George Michael and starring Westeros escapee Emilia Clarke, it’s also helmed by Bridesmaids director Paul Feig.

Clarke stars as Kate, working as an elf in an all-year-round Christmas shop and none too happy with her lot – until she meets Tom (Henry Golding, Crazy Rich Asians), who seems too good to be true.

Is he everything she wants, or is she just kissing a fool? Find out, in the film no-one’s calling Fastlove, Actually

Le Mans ‘66

  • Cert 12A, 152 mins
  • Vue York, City Screen, Everyman
  • From Fri Nov 15
  • More details

From Rocky to Chariots of Fire, when it comes to sport films everyone loves an underdog.

Le Mans ‘66 is the latest entry in this ever-popular sub-genre, telling the tale of the Ford Motor Company’s battle to unseat reigning champions Ferrari in the titular race.

Christian Bale takes the maverick role as driver Ken Miles, while completing the dynamic duo is Matt Damon as car designer Carroll Shelby.

Steered to the screen by Walk the Line director James Mangold, it’s a film that Screen Daily claims “puts all the fine-tuned expertise of a big-budget Hollywood production at the service of a great piece of storytelling.”

Other screenings

If you’re a cinema-goer of a certain age and Last Christmas has got you feeling all nostalgic, then give up your best freeze-frame air-punch for Everyman, who have got Judd Nelson and the gang back in detention in The Breakfast Club on Friday 15th.

A more recent classic is on offer at City Screen on Sun 17th, as their Studio Ghibli season arrives at 2004 fantasy adventure Howl’s Moving Castle, where a young girl joins forces with a powerful wizard after she’s cursed by an evil witch.

Ecological concerns are a regular theme of Ghibli films, and I imagine director Hayao Miyazaki would approve of new documentary 2040, an optimistic guide to combating climate change from Australian environmentalist Damon Gameau – you can catch it at Vue on Sat 16th and Sun 17th.

I’m not sure how many people came away from Quentin Tarantino’s latest saying, “You know what, that could have done with being a bit longer”, but those who did can catch the extended cut of Once Upon a Time in Hollywood at Vue on Sat 16th – the same day also sees a screening of a new animated version of John Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress.

This week’s big music doc is Depeche Mode: Spirits in the Forest, which combines footage of the band’s 2017/18 tour with the stories of six of their famously devoted fans – it shows at all three York cinemas on Thurs 21st.

And finally, if that’s not quite your musical cup of tea, then on Tues 19th Everyman have a screening of Lionel Richie at Glastonbury, showcasing the singer’s 2015 concert at the festival alongside exclusive commentary from the man himself – why not pop down and say Hello?

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