Screen closes on Alban Arena's season

A BUSY few days of films beckons at the Alban Arena as it cruises towards its annual August shutdown. The first to be shown at 1pm on Tuesday, July 28, and 1.30pm on Wednesday, July 29, is the hit movie Marley and Me starring Owen Wilson and Jennifer Anis

A BUSY few days of films beckons at the Alban Arena as it cruises towards its annual August shutdown.

The first to be shown at 1pm on Tuesday, July 28, and 1.30pm on Wednesday, July 29, is the hit movie Marley and Me starring Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston.

It chronicles the pair's relationship and the challenges they face as a married couple wanting to start a family - all the time with their beloved dog Marley by their side.

Although Marley can chew through drywall, gets kicked out of obedience classes and never meets a leg he doesn't like, he proves to be the couple's most faithful friend.


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The film features cameos from Alan Arkin as Wilson's boss and Kathleen Turner as Marley's obedience instructor.

Showing on the same two days but at 7.30pm each evening is Gran Torino, Clint Eastwood's fourth directorial feature in a two-year span.

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It tells the story of a Korean War veteran's reluctant friendship with a Hmong teenage boy and his immigrant family in contemporary Detroit.

Eastwood stars as Walt Kowalsi, an unabashed bigot who never heard a racial insult he didn't love. But while there is nothing subtle about his bigotry, his misanthropy knows no bounds.

Gran Torino is about the unlikely bonds that people form to navigate the subtle complexities of everyday life and like an earlier Eastwood film, Million Dollar Baby, it explores the challenging yet rich new world that can open up when individuals let down their guard, even if just for a moment.

Monsters vs Aliens is the lunchtime film on Thursday, July 30, and Friday, July 31. A family film it starts when a radioactive meteor hurtles into Susan Murphy - voiced by Reese Witherspoon - on her wedding day and she is transformed into a towering, platinum-haired giant.

Taken away by government, she is introduced to other scientific oddities, all of whom are released from captivity when a massive alien robot appears in San Francisco - and clearly does not come in peace.

Co-directed by Rob Letterman and Conrad Vernon of Dreamworks Studios, it playfully references everything from Dr Strangelove to Close Encounters of the Third Kind.

Monsters vs Aliens can be seen at 1.30pm on both days.

The evening film at 7.30pm on the same two days is In The Loop which finds the US President and the UK Prime Minister fancying a war - but not everyone agreeing it is a good thing.

US General Miller (James Gandolfini) doesn't think so and neither does the British Secretary of State for International Development Simon Foster (Tom Hollander)

But after Simon accidentally backs military action on TV, he suddenly finds he has a lot of friends in Washington DC.

Only if Simon's entourage of one can sleep with the right intern and if they can both stop the Prime Minister's chief spin doctor rigging the vote at the UN, can they halt the war.

Tickets for all the films are �6 with concessions �4, available from the Arena box office on 01727 844488.

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