LFF 2014 Previews Part i:

The Obvious Choices.

The Imitation Game (Morten Tyldum)

To be honest, the opening and closing galas at the LFF are a hit and miss bunch (360 in 2011 anyone?) but this year's looks like a certainty. Tyldum's fictionalised tale of English code breaking legend Alan Turing stars Benedict Cumberbatch and Keira Knightly and for a film essentially about a maths geek, it looks pretty damn thrilling. 

Fury (David Ayer)

Part of BS recently spent a couple of days playing on a tank for this one, much fun was had. Brad Pitt stars as a bad-ass Sherman Tank commander charging into Germany during the dog days of the Second World War. End of Watch (which we mostly enjoyed) director Ayer is at the helm.

Foxcatcher (Bennet Miller)

Have you seen Steve Carell? Good grief no, no you haven't. Check out the trailer for this fact based journey into the crazy world of wrestling. Carell is the benefactor gone slightly mad, Channing Tatum his charge. Directed by Moneyball and Capote helmer Miller, we're struggling to see how this can be anything other than superb.

Mr. Turner (Mike Leigh)

Doesn't seem five minutes ago that Tim Spall was Barry in Auf Wiedersehen, Pet. How he's come on since then. Playing the eponymous painter here, Spall puts in what is already an award winning performance that we're willing to bet will feature at the Academy's bash next February. The always magnificent Mike Leigh directs.

Rosewater (Jon Stewart)

We've been fans of Mr. Stewart since discovering him (!) on the Daily Show way back in 2001 on an extended trip to the USA. Immediately banishing naive thoughts that American's can't do serious humour, we're very excited that he has branched out into the movie world. Based on the true story of journalist Maziar Bahari's incarceration and torture in his home country of Iran, this could mark Stewart as a very exciting new filmmaker.

Men, Women & Children (Jason Reitman)

Remember back when Adam Sandler could be expected to come up with a decent movie occasionally? No? Well, think back to Punch Drunk Love and Happy Gillmore, it was once possible. This one is more of an ensemble but still looks as if it could be Sandler back in a decent movie. Reitman directs Chad Kultgen's novel about life staring at screens.

Wild Tales (Damián Szifrón)

As ever with the LFF, most of the joy resides in checking out as many international releases as possible. Szifrón brings us this comedy from Argentina, taking in all kinds of shady low-lifes across six unrelated stories. Ricardo Darín (The Secret in Their Eyes) stars.

Song of the Sea (Tomm Moore)

Last year's Family Gala screening of Foosball (finally released in August in the UK as The Unbeatables) was a bit of a disappointment but we have high hopes for this one. Celtic magic and folklore abound as Moore (Oscar nominated for The Secret of Kells) brings his charmingly round faced animation back to the screen. Who doesn't want to see magical beings who turn into seals and disappear into the sea?

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