1. Good Vibrations, in cinemas now
Belfast was a troubled place in the 70s: conflict, violence, bombs - not the most ideal place to try to foster a new music scene. But Terri Hooley did just that, pitting the power of music against politics, not only creating a small oasis with his record store Good Vibrations, but fostering a whole community of kids and punks, and starting a record label that brought the city back to life. Game Of Thrones star Richard Dormer plays Hooley in this acclaimed biopic, and Dylan Moran, Jodie Whittaker, and Liam Cunningham help to bring comedy and heart to this celebration of rebels and music lovers.
2. White Lung and Upset, Kings Arms, Friday
Californian band Upset.
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Kick-ass, sweetly vicious, and intense, are words thrown around frequently when it comes to Canadian punk band White Lung, so you can bet their Friday night show will be a full-on sonic assault, especially because they're releasing their third album Deep Fantasy the same day. Plus they're being supported by rising Californian punk rockers Upset, which includes ex-Best Coast and Vivian Girls multi-instrumentalist Ali Koehler, and Patty Schemel who used to drum for Hole.
3. Two Faces Of January, in cinemas now3
The Two Faces of January.
Adapted from a book by Patricia Highsmith, who also wrote The Talented Mr Ripley, directed by Hussein Amini, who wrote Drive, starring Kirsten Dunst, Viggo Mortensen, and Isaac Davidson, and set in 1960s Greece, this film has all the ingredients for a visually alluring, yet chilling thriller. Two morally ambiguous men with a knack for a good con, a beautiful wife, and a secret that's following them across borders is the set-up, and it's best to know little more than events take a sinister turn in between sunny ruins and carefree fishing villages.
4. Aotea Square Ice Ring, from today
Once again bringing a little magic into town to alleviate the wintery blues, the traditional skating rink is being expanded this year, with a beginners area, and a 35m multi-level ice slide, which will perfect for tubing and sledding. It will be open from 10am to 10pm every day (perfect for the school holidays), and they'll be running a programme of events including ice sport weekends, foam parties, ice carnivals, chicken bowling, and Americana celebrations.