All the new flicks this week came out on Boxing Day, but you do have a fair few options. Shiny new films at the multiplex include a young European journalist and his dog Snowy on a treasure hunt in The Adventures of Tintin, dancing penguins in Happy Feet Two, Matt Damon as a solo dad buying a zoo in We Bought A Zoo, and Ben Stiller, Eddie Murphy, Casey Affleck and Matthew Broderick hamming it up in caper flick Tower Heist. If you're after something a little more historical, the art houses will be bringing you two dramatic portraits of stern women, with Meryl Streep as a scarily good Margaret Thatcher in The Iron Lady, and Glenn Close doing a scarily good gender transformation playing a woman pretending to be a man in order to work as a butler and survive in 19th century Ireland in Albert Nobbs. The only movie you probably shouldn't see on December 31 is Lars von Trier's end-of-the-world, contemplation-of-existence, cosmic head-spinner Melancholia. Might be a bit much.
The fine-lookin' US Marshal in a cowboy hat with a killer southern drawl and an even sharper shot, Raylon Givens, returns this week as TV One begins screening the second season of Justified on Wednesday at 10.45pm. After a solid opening, the second season is set to dig a little deeper into the backgrounds of the Crowthers, Givens and Bennetts as alliances shift in Harlan. Also starting is a mini-series from the creators of The Wire called The Corner. Screening on SoHo from Monday, 8.30pm, it's based on a true story and chronicles the life of a family living in poverty amid the open-air drug markets of West Baltimore. Made in 2000, it's as relevant now as it was 11 years ago. New Year's Eve TV isn't offering too much excitement, so if you're at home for the evening, feel free to have a drink, throw the stereo on and dance round the living room instead.
Many local musicians have taken off to the beaches for their annual summer tours, so you might like to do the same. Ladi6 and The Black Seeds will be performing north of Auckland at Mangawhai Tavern tonight, while Dave Dobbyn, Midnight Youth and Dukes will be at Waihi Beach Hotel on New Year's Eve, and the old guard - Jimmy Barnes, Hello Sailor, and Dragon - will be rocking in the new year at Ascension Wine Estate in Matakana. If you are going to be in town on New Year's Eve the place to be is the Gunslingers Ball at Kings Arms, where Bernie Griffin and the Grifters, Heart Attack Alley, The Broadsides, The Situations, Live Nudes, Gundry Blues and Tina Turntables will be having a right ol' hoe-down.
This summer Auckland Museum is the scene of the crime for The Poisoners. If you've got some budding detective children, then take them along to this new interactive exhibition where they'll have to solve the mystery of who murdered scientist Felix Splicer. One of four suspects committed the crime and the weapon is among hundreds of objects from the Natural History collection - from deadly hemlock to venomous sea snails.
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